There have been a few instances in the news lately where the importance for maintaining up to date contact information for parents has been highlighted. In these cases, schools have tried unsuccessfully to get in touch with parents when their child has failed to turn up to school.
Most schools have a system in place to instantly contact parents when a child is absent or an important message needs to be sent home. However, this is completely irrelevant if the parent doesn’t receive this message because of old and incorrect contact information.
We’ve put together three key tips which you, as a school, can implement to help ensure that parent contact details are kept up to date.
Instead of relying on parents to remember a message they received when they first arrived at your school, send them regular reminders to update their contact information. The beginning of a new term is a good time to do this as everyone is fresh and because this only occurs four times a year, it isn’t seen as a nuisance. Including a note in regular newsletters can also be a friendly, non-invasive way to remind parents to update their information.
Maintaining member lists
The member lists that you keep for teams, groups and classes are a good way to easily contact specific groups of students and their parents. Keeping these as up to date as possible will help to ensure the right people are receiving the right message. When children leave or join teams, groups or classes, update them in your member lists. This way you can ensure that you have done everything you can at your end to get the message through to the parents.
Building early relationships
A child arriving at your school for the first time is a great opportunity to get parents accustomed to updating their contact information. If they understand the importance of keeping contact details up to date from the start, the chances of them continuing this throughout their relationship with your school are much higher.
Avoiding communication breakdown is so important between schools and their parents. Ensuring you have done everything possible to keep parent information up to date can help to alleviate future issues from arising.