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Communicating with parents


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I was just wondering how many of you use email to communicate with parents. I recently did a newsletter which either just got left on the side or left in children's bag or staff even forgot to give it out. Feedback from a questionnaire I need was they wanted more communications. I'm thinking of asking parents for an email address and using this to communicate more with them. Do other just use email or paper or a mix of both?

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A mix of both for me :1b

I'm also a fan of the 'Daily Contact' book - sometimes I only write a very brief line - but if something else needs saying it does mean that there is an immediate two-way flow of info (if they read it that is :D ) - very useful too for parents who don't deliver or collect their own children :1b

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Mixture, mainly paper but also use text and e-mail. I asked all if they wanted to receive copies through e-mail and only a small percentage replied, our text service I use to ask them to advise me if they wanted to register on it now I don't it happens automatically at registration now, think I may start to do this with e-mail too. How many times something is happening and parents come in 'I didn't know about it' they say as I put my head in my hands and growl to myself what about the newsletter, text and sign on door :(

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I send a newsletter weekly by email. I have a few parents who don't have computer or can only partially see on their phones so I print a copy for them. I also display on notice board and on website.

I have created a team of parents who I meet with each half term and they share concerns and I run through new ideas etc. but I have also given them the task to talk to the other parents and drop into conversation stuff from the newsletter. This also works well.

But even with all of this I still get comments such as "oh I didn't know." I just accept that we are all busy and sometimes we just skim read or half listen.

Biggest concern is getting messages to parents about applying to school. I translate into all the different languages spoken by parents, I stand on the gate and nag but there is always one parent who just does not get the message

Hey ho!

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I use email, all my parents currently have an email address in fact I've not had a parent who hasn't got an email address for many years now; a copy of the latest newsletter is also on the noticeboard in the parents entrance.

I also put a post on Facebook saying that the latest newsletter has been sent to their email account - I don't put the newsletter on FB as we put photos on ours.

If it's a brief reminder eg don't forget photographer in today, I will email and also Facebook it.

I'm NOT a fan of Facebook, but I realised that it seems to be the way these days for our young mums :1b

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I

I'm NOT a fan of Facebook, but I realised that it seems to be the way these days for our young mums :1b

I may have to bit the bullet in 2015 and accept the need for facebook.... :(:(:D

I have been known to stand with a clipboard and pen whilst handing out newsletters/dates/info etc. I'm almost ashamed to say I think parents are now frightened of the 'look' I give if they dare to say... 'I didn't know'!!!

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Due to likes, comments etc to which I don't post much on Facebook ! We come up high in google search rankings ? always a bright side ha ha ha plus the fantastic comments are for all to see which I get quite emotional at reading them, it's great to know others can see/read them ..... I do as someone above though just post to say newsletter or information etc is out so to look out for their copy, I don't put it on there. :)

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I have to say, ( sorry to all those who hate facebook with a passion!) that our parents group has been a massive success! I post newsletters and updates on there and reminders and parents really appreciate it, paper copies are still given to all parents and we can also text. I gave up counting how many parents thanked me for the reminder about our Christmas party lol newsletters just do not the level of attention they deserve! lol and people now a days don't seem to use diary's. A few parents will email for information but most of them have joined our face book group, which is a closed group so invitation only.

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I have to say, ( sorry to all those who hate facebook with a passion!) that our parents group has been a massive success! I post newsletters and updates on there and reminders and parents really appreciate it, paper copies are still given to all parents and we can also text. I gave up counting how many parents thanked me for the reminder about our Christmas party lol newsletters just do not the level of attention they deserve! lol and people now a days don't seem to use diary's. A few parents will email for information but most of them have joined our face book group, which is a closed group so invitation only.

Whatever works for you! :1b

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controversially, I am of the strong opinion that parents need to take more responsibility (guess what's bugged me this term!)

It takes us longer to write the newsletter than it does to read it so if we go to the effort to do it (as they requested on questionnaires) (and they all say it's great blah blah blah when given it) then they need to read it and note when things are or be disappointed that they missed something - phones are great for this, they even give an alarm - they shouldn't need to rely on us reminding them - we have enough to do! ​however I am mindful that FB is the way forward probably, but still refuse to do it as it's just another thing to 'keep on top of'

Our elf was terrible this year and removed reminder posters that never got noticed anyway as he felt the newsletter was enough

We are slowly finding that the less we spoon feed the more parents step up she hopes!

 

pops head back down below parapet and resumes scoffing of chocolate

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I can't help but wonder what happens to the parents that constantly "miss" the info we provide them with once their child goes onto school, where there are no endless reminders, weekly detailed newsletters, no constant chasing by staff or eleventh hour phone calls.....they all must cope, so are we just perpetuating the problem by spoon feeding them at nursery? (yes, I hold my hand up to being a spoonfeeder).

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I have said it before but as one of those who was anti Fb ,since setting up page it has been really helpful although there are always those who still ask again and again , I have made it clear that FB is done voluntary and is not to be abused. I can upload letters etc and also use email and hard copies for those without email , folder with copies of newsletters in foyer. Our FB is a closed group and only current parents added by me.

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i was chatting to one of the local primary school teachers, they have just moved from a small infants school into a brand new primary sized building, despite weekly updates of how the build was progressing via news letters and the occasional extra update, they still had parents shocked on the last day of term to find out that they were moving sites! some even went in to say they did not want their child to move to the new building but wanted them to stay....the fact that the school had been moving resources, and taking their classes to the new building came as a complete surprise to some, and it was not just one or two parents either! lol

we leave our news letters in the children's draw right on the top of any paintings or other creations, but I would like to bet most of them get put straight in the recycling bin when they get home lol

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Our half termly newsletter gets sent out by email to save printing costs but I have now gone back to printing off a b&w copy as well for everyone as no one ever seems to print off their own copy or to read it if it's on their phones. It's also on our website. We also use text reminders about events or fee invoices being in their bags or for emergency messages eg a snow day.

We also have a closed fb group which parents or other staff use for reminders as well as an "official" fb page run by me which I will use to flag up coming events. It's so much easier to put things on facebook rather than update our website. It does irritate me A LOT when some staff and parents seem to think that just because something is on facebook that ALL parents see it, so I do try to cover all eventualities. And from experience I know that even then, some parents still don't read what is in front of them.

 

General letters asking for permission slips etc go out in paper form, usually I have to pick up 1 or 2 which have been put down and forgotten in the cloakroom. We still get parents who come in clueless on dressup days and the like.

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I can't help but wonder what happens to the parents that constantly "miss" the info we provide them with once their child goes onto school, where there are no endless reminders, weekly detailed newsletters, no constant chasing by staff or eleventh hour phone calls.....they all must cope, so are we just perpetuating the problem by spoon feeding them at nursery? (yes, I hold my hand up to being a spoonfeeder).

But we do give information, remind, send duplicates, talk to parents when they deliver and collect children etc right through the Infant school - so spoonfeeding all the way then!!

Most effective thing I have ever done was to get children to write invitations to parents to Christmas and Summer performances

and occasional events through the year, then put them in the child's hand as they went through the door at the end of the day - harnessed the 'pester power'!

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We do newsletters and also use facebook, we have a closed group and and open group. Facebook works well for us but there will always be those parents that don't read things properly. I've had 2 parents email me this week saying their children wouldn't be in... ermmm we are closed, it's been in 3 newsletters and an individual letter sent to everyone who is all year round plus facebook... I wonder how many turned up ....

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Email works well for us, with the back up of a hard copy of a newsletter on the door and daily messages on a large wipe board easel by the entrance door. Not to mention the constant verbal feedback and reminders!! And yes there is always parents who swear they never the get information!!! Have finally after many years learnt that I am never going to have a 100% success rate with communication issues!! :rolleyes:

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Literacy problems have been an issue in the past but we do cater for our eal parents and they are spoken to face to face, but we are lucky that our families all have one parent who speaks some English.

ah yes but just remember that speaking english has no bearing on reading english!

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ah yes but just remember that speaking english has no bearing on reading english!

or any other language for that matter.

We stopped translating newsletters etc into other home languages when parents told us they couldn't read them and they were more comfortable with a member of staff or a friend translating for them, so that's what we try to do. Takes a lot of effort, but I still feel guilty about missing the milk letter in my daughter's first term at school, and try to avoid other people feeling that guilt!!

When all else fails 'google translate' has worked well for me with some parents when I can't find anyone to translate - we use it as a conversation tool, not printing out loads of stuff because it sometimes needs several goes to make a meaning clear

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  • 3 weeks later...

We do newsletters and also use facebook, we have a closed group and and open group. Facebook works well for us but there will always be those parents that don't read things properly. I've had 2 parents email me this week saying their children wouldn't be in... ermmm we are closed, it's been in 3 newsletters and an individual letter sent to everyone who is all year round plus facebook... I wonder how many turned up ....

what do you put on the open page and what on the closed please?
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E-mails only for me, occasionally with a 'please confirm receipt'. (I only have parents of 25 children). Paper is far too complicated. Very brief messages, in the subject line whenever possible. Tonight's was 'Thick socks and insoles'. All of them know what that means by now (as they've had to be reminded and corrected many times this winter...)

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what do you put on the open page and what on the closed please?

Hi, on the open page we have a sort of blog, we post photos each week of the things we've been up to in each room, no faces, just activities or hands and feet! We also put up messages for events.

On the closed page, it's more of a message board, for parents to ask questions, and for us to put up reminders.

This is the link to our open page if you want to have a look ;)https://www.facebook.com/busybeesbourneltd

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