Texas High School To Implement Honeywell's Instant Alert
3/13/2007—B. F. Terry High School in Rosenberg, TX has selected Minneapolis, MN-based Honeywell's Instant Alert for Schools to improve parent communication and emergency responsiveness.
As a pilot site for the Lamar Consolidated Independent School District (Lamar CISD), the school will use the web-based system to send thousands of families English and Spanish messages via phone, mobile phone, pager, e-mail and PDA. Using a secure website or phone, school representatives can instantly message all contact points provided by parents or guardians, who can use the web to update their contact information and how they'd like to be reached (for instance, e-mail for routine messages and mobile phone for emergencies.)
"With Instant Alert, we're better prepared to respond in an emergency, but we're also equipped to communicate more proactively with parents in everyday situations," said B. F. Terry Principal Vera Wehring in a prepared statement. "We expect the service to enhance the learning environment and increase academic achievement, because informed parents mean informed students."
The school, which has more than 1,700 9-12 students, will use the service to update parents with communications such as emergency notifications, weather issues, bus delays and event cancellations. B. F. Terry is the first school in the Houston area to adopt Instant Alert, joining more than 1,100 schools nationwide using the service, including 20 in Texas.
"In today's environment, it's important to get accurate information to parents as quickly as possible," said Lamar CISD Superintendent Thomas Randle.
The system also lets schools create unlimited subgroups, such as sports teams, clubs, parent organizations and grade levels, to send customized messages to these groups. To combat truancy, schools also can send alerts to individual parents.
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David Kopf is a freelance technology writer and marketing consultant, and can be reached at [email protected].