As the new school year fast approaches, Galt Joint Union High School District (GJUHSD) teachers, staff and administrators are furiously preparing for arguably the most uncertain start in decades. Classes will be held virtually to begin the school year on Aug. 17, so textbooks, computers and hotspots will be passed out next week.
Not having students physically on school campuses will take an already challenging task for communication between schools and parents and multiply that challenge tenfold.
Hoping to not just dodge this new obstacle, but to overcome it, GJUHSD administration will be using ParentSquare, a cutting-edge communication platform that helps connect schools with families to improve student outcomes and school success. The new program guarantees to not only allow parents to receive up-to-date information from the district and school, but allows one-to-one communication between teachers and parents in any language.
In fact, this app promises to keep parents in the know like never before, but there’s one catch – parents must make sure to update their contact information with their student’s school.
This new mode of communication has many features, including school contact information; staff directory; attendance; district-wide, school-wide and class information posts; private messaging between teachers/staff and parents; school calendar; and the ability to virtually sign forms, to name just a few.
ParentSquare can be used as an app on smartphones or online via its website. The app is available for free for iOS and Android smartphones.
Signing in is easy if your information is correct at your child’s school. Simply download the free app to your smartphone and enter your name and child’s school, and if your information is correct with the district, you should be able to complete registration and enter the parent portal where you can create a password and start exploring the communication options available.
If you would rather not download the app to your phone, online access is just as simple. Go to www.parentsquare.com and enter your information. Once the system syncs with your contact information with the district, you will be welcomed into the parent portal.
Whether parents use the on-phone app or the website, parents can choose to receive alerts and updates through the app, via email, via text message or all three.
Although signup is not mandatory for parents to receive email, text or robocall urgent updates from the district, GJUHSD administration strongly encourages parents, guardians and caregivers to sign up for ParentSquare to help increase the school-to-home communication.
Teachers and staff are expected to shift to ParentSquare from the various other modes of communication used in the past, and are currently being trained on the new system.