Cisco Systems has released automatic communication software calledSchoolMessenger for Cisco Unified Communications, which will enable schools to convey important information to parents more efficiently.
SchoolMessenger, a US parental notification company, has integrated its system with the Cisco telephony application, which is based on internet protocol (IP). Teachers can record a personalized message, select a preprogrammed calling list, and send a message to parents from a computer or IP phone.
SchoolMessenger works with the schools’ student information systems, so data can be quickly mined for names and numbers. Then the system uses a district’s IP voice infrastructure to notify parents of absentees, school closings and more. Cisco says that because fewer dedicated circuits are needed for outbound calling campaigns, the district saves money.
Cisco claims that the SchoolMessenger system provides more efficient communications compared to traditional autodialer systems. In turn, this helps improve attendance rates and increases student performance.
A school district in Utah, one in Washington, and another in Illinois have implemented the communication technology.
Derry Lyons, the director of IT services for South Kitsap School District, comments, with Cisco and SchoolMessenger we’ve eliminated manual dialing for attendance and improved administrative communications for weather-related school closures.