Blogs

August 18, 2013

Participation with your School PTA Makes a Good Neighborhood

There are numerous ‘Best Places to Live’ rankings on the web, but none of them look beyond statistics to crown their winners.  No statistic can predict the relations you build within your neighborhood. That is why those rankings are best left as diversions, used only to reinforce our convictions, or to provide some anecdote we might use against a rival town. The rankings do not tell you of the unique ways that a town grows on you. The more ties you make to the community, the more affection you feel towards your neighborhood. Little things, like meeting neighbors in church, driving your kids and their friends to soccer, learning the name of your barber, make a new town home to you. There are many ways to build community ties. For example, joining a PTA/PTO committee is a great way to get involved in your local parent community.  The school directory […]
August 18, 2013

From a Print Directory to a Mobile Directory, a Go Green solution for School Parents

  The production and use of paper contribute towards significant pollution of our environment, affecting, air, water and land.   Even paper recycling can be a source of pollution due to the sludge produced during a recovery process known as deinking.  The increasing demands for paper consumption has led to deforestation of ‘old growth forests’, compounding the ecological impact of increased Greenhouse gas production and global warming. So, what can schools do to ‘Go Green’ and thus lessen the environmental and ecological impact of paper consumption? Every year thousands of schools in states across America go through the grueling process of compiling and printing school directories for parents which include families‚ names and contact information, teacher and student class rosters as well as other school related information.  These print directories consume significant levels of paper and ink products, a tradition that is at odds with the School’s mission to Go […]
March 26, 2013

Mobile School Directory App Versus a PDF

I talk to school parents every day about our mobile school directory app. One of the questions asked is – how does a mobile app compare to an electronic PDF available over the web containing a list of parent contacts. I have compiled a table with the list of comparable features. Our mobile school directory app, MobileArq, is available on smartphones, iPads or any tablet device, computers (laptops and desktops). PDF Directory Mobile School Directory App Hard to view on a smartphone. Built for usage on a smartphone, tablet or computer with the same URL Not interactive Interactive‚ call/email/text from app Personal info cannot be updated/published by the user. Personal info can be updated and published immediately by the user or directory volunteer. No Group Communications Send message in a single click to members of any group. E.g., class/forensics/sport teams. As you can see, the benefits of having an app […]
March 2, 2013

School Directory Production

School Directory Production can be a torturous process I was talking to the “PTA ex-Directory Chair” in one of the Elementary Schools about the school directory process in her district. She told me that after three years of producing the school directory for her elementary school, she was “BURNED OUT” and stepped down last year. Let me call her Mrs. Directory Chair. Mrs. Directory Chair was very frustrated about the problems she faced in the school. They used archaic systems to collect the information, namely paper forms. Although the district collected the information, they would not give her the updates she needed for the existing parents. This was in part due to the “privacy policy”. Each time she would walk into the office to get some information, they would ask her for all her details ALL OVER again. And she was visiting them three to four times a week! Although […]