Friday, February 15, 2013

Strengthen the home-school connection right from your phone with

School guidance counselor Willyn Webb says that has made a positive improvement for her school’s Parent Accountability Committee (PAC) which meets once per month.

Celly is a free, mobile social network that works via group texting.  It is instant, private, and secure. There is never an exchange of personal cell phone numbers, yet everyone is connected in the ways that work best depending on the need.  

Each cell is it's own mobile social network that works with any mobile phone or device. Members can join instantly with one text and exchange group messages, polls, reminders, and web alerts.  There is a record of all texts sent and received.  

Before she found it frustrating to provide a clear picture of what was happening in school during a once a month meeting. Her solution was to invite them all to join her PAC Cell. She did this at a meeting where she shared the number and Cell name.  It’s so easy to join.  They just took out their phones and in the first five minutes of the meeting it was in place.  

At first they just communicated about logistics.  For example, Webb used to set up a last minute Christmas potluck for their December meeting.  Today, Webb sends a daily message that might be to share progress regarding service learning projects, academic milestones, praises for students and staff, struggles, and needs for improvement.  The parents are welcome to respond, and if applicable, a powerful response might be re-sent to the group.   

During the few seconds it takes to send a single text parents truly become part of the day to day happenings at Delta Opportunity School. Parents have shared that this helps them do their job better, look more forward to meetings, and be able to truly advocate for their school. 

As a result of the PAC is now communicating often and Webb says she feels great about keeping her PAC up-to-date and informed with the praises, growth, and challenges. 

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