OnOct. 22, the district will be adding text messaging capabilities toSchoolMessenger, the mass notification system it now uses to deliver importantinformation by phone and email to its stakeholders.
The system will be configured to send text messages to cell phone numbers inSchoolMessenger whose recipients have agreed to receive them.
“We have heard from principals that some parents would like to receive texts sowe are making this option available to school sites as another means ofcommunication,” said Superintendent Cindy Marten. “This new tool aligns withthe Board of Education’s focus in 2014 on enhancing communications and parentengagement as outlined in Vision 2020.”
The district and its school sites currently have the option of sending recipientseither a voice or email message, or both. Now they will also have the abilityto send text messages, expanding the tools they can utilize to communicate withparents and staff. It is important to note, however, that recipients will onlyreceive text messages if they opt-in, have a cell phone number on file with thedistrict and the message sender provides content for a text message.
The district will likely limit its use of text messaging to emergencysituations, such as lockdowns, in which short, quick communication is helpful.Texts may also direct individuals to an email or a website for moreinformation.
“SchoolMessenger uses short code texting, which is highly reliable and fastbecause it’s regulated by the wireless carriers,” added Jennifer Rodriguez, thedistrict’s SchoolMessenger liaison. “Our goal is to make sure that the districtand its schools have all the tools they need to effectively communicate eachday, but especially during emergencies.”
The district will be encouraging all stakeholders throughout October to opt-into receiving texts. To do this, recipients can text “Yes” to 68453 from eachmobile device at which they wish to receive text messages. Should you opt-inand no longer wish to receive messages, or vice versa, the process forswitching preferences is simple; either text “YES” or “STOP” to 68453.
For those that have not opted-in on their own, a reminder message will be sentdistrict-wide Oct. 22 to all cell phone numbers on file reminding individualsto opt-in. The message will read “San Diego Unified text messages. Reply Y foraprx 3 msgs/mo. Txt HELP 4info. Msg&data rates may apply. Seeschoolmessenger.com/tm.”
The reminder text message is sent on the same day, Oct. 22, that district andschool sites can start sending text messages to individuals that have opted-in.
The district will send reminders throughout the school year to encouragerecipients to opt-in. Information about text messaging is available on thedistrict’s CommunicationsDepartment webpage.
Maria Montgomery, Principal
6475 Antigua Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92124
Phone (858) 279-1022
Fax (858) 569-7418