Teachers’ letters are replaced by phone app at Gosport school

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COMMUNICATING with parents and carers can often be challenging for schools – so one has developed a smart new method.

Gomer Juniors in Gosport has teamed up with designers Apptree to create a mobile phone app to give information on what is going on at the school and engage them in their children’s learning

TECH From left, headteacher Georgina Mulhall with parents Phil Ashton and Sheila Clark and their children, Mia Clark, nine, left, and Eva Ashton, seven. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (150807-1)

TECH From left, headteacher Georgina Mulhall with parents Phil Ashton and Sheila Clark and their children, Mia Clark, nine, left, and Eva Ashton, seven. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (150807-1)

Headteacher Georgina Mulhall said: ‘Apps seem to be everywhere now, so we thought an app for our school would be perfect to put information at parents’ fingertips.’

In the process of designing the app, the school looked at its current communications, including a monthly newsletter, a website, Facebook page, Twitter, text service and one-off letters.

Mrs Mulhall said: ‘When we reviewed how we communicate with parents, we realised that no one method suits all parents/carers.

‘We’re increasingly aware that more parents/carers are working, often irregular hours and frequently they are not desk-based and don’t receive emails.’

The app automatically co-ordinates to the school’s calendar, which means parents can access a real-time information.

Due to the technology, the school plans reduce the amount of paper reminders and letters home about calender changes and additions.

‘This stands to save us considerable cost and will be more environmentally friendly,’ said Mrs Mulhall.

‘We also have the ability to send out last minute reminders and unavoidable changes as notifications direct to our parents’ pockets.’

Parents were given a demonstration of how the app works at the launch, yesterday.

Governor and former parent Penny Smith said: ‘It’s very easy to use and complements the school website.’

And Parent Partnership member Sally Wakely, who has a child in Year 4, said: ‘I’m really pleased.

‘It’s very easy and convenient to use and everything is easy to access.’

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