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New Teacher/Parent Two-Way Communication Tool

GISD is excited to launch a new communication platform for our teachers and parents beginning this school year. Several years ago, we began a district wide implementation of two platforms which helped streamline communication methods for our teachers and parents.  PK - 4th grade classrooms were utilizing Class Dojo and 5th - 12th grade classrooms were utilizing Remind. 

While these were effective communication platforms, GISD was introduced to a new platform, SchoolStatus, which has more resources available to our teachers.  It is our hope that this new platform will better equip our teachers to ensure effective communication and increase parent engagement.

What do you need to know as a parent? 

Parents do not need to “opt-in”.  If you have a student registered in GISD, then the teachers have your contact information and can open those lines of communication.All of your contact information is pulled from Ascender and updated nightly.  This is the same method of pulling contact information as we currently use for district and campus level communication.  With that being said, our contact information is only as good as what you provide. Please ensure that your phone numbers and email addresses are updated as any changes are made.  On this note, the only way for a parent or guardian to be able to receive messages is for that parent or guardian to be listed as a contact in Ascender. 

There is not an app to download.  Messages sent from your child’s teacher will come through your text message thread, phone calls will come to your phone, and emails will come through your regular email account. For you, the parent, this looks like any other message.  The difference on the teacher's side is that all communication is sent via the SchoolStatus platform and recorded and a parent communication log is created.

When will I hear from my child’s teacher?  Teachers were given access to the platform on August 22.  If you have not yet heard from your child's teacher(s), you should be receiving a text very soon.  The teachers will reach out to you via text message.  He/she will ask you to respond to which locks in their contact number and for you to save that number, which is unique to each teacher for each student. This is NOT their personal cell phone number. This will be the number that you will be able to text or call to reach that teacher regarding your student. 

How do I contact my child’s teacher? Once the teacher sends the initial text or phone call, you can contact the teacher directly.  The teacher has the ability to send messages to individual contacts or the class as a whole. However, when you respond to the message, it will ONLY go directly to the teacher.  We want to ensure that you, the parent, have ample opportunity to engage in two-way communication with your child’s teacher. 

Are there certain times I can send a text or call?  The teacher has the ability to set office hours in which phone calls will actively ring.  However, if you make a call when it is not their designated office hours, then you will be directed to either leave a voicemail or be transferred to the front office.  

How will I get information from Principals and GISD? Throughout this school year, campus and district leaders will continue to use the same communication platform, so there are no changes on your end as a parent.  This will allow for a soft launch on the district-side and ensure that the rollover to the new platform is 100% and we are still able to effectively reach all families in the event of an emergency. We will begin to transition district and campus level communication to SchoolStatus next semester.