Multi Academy Trusts

We have been talking to several new customers over last two weeks who are multi academy trusts and have realised that that our product has the potential to work very well for MATs.
We provide the option for schools to have multiple sections and previously this has been used by schools for upper and lower schools, (with those with students in age ranges 4-18), or separate sectiosn for sixth form from the main school. One school wanted to use the sections for different content for each class within a nursery adn primary school. Their classes were names after small wild animals.

Don't get an App from App for Schools

Don't get an App from App for Schools if you already have free individual messaging.
Don't get an App from App for Schools if you already have 24/7 support.
Don't get an App from App for Schools if you already get free secure areas where you can post material that only selevted people can see e.g. Staff, Governors, Year 6 pupils, Football team etc etc
Again and again we provide apps to schools and our contacts are shocked by how much value you get from our apps, that you don't get from other providers.
These are genuine comments.

Sometimes schools are too busy to use our apps effectively - here's some help

It's sad but true that schools are too busy to use an app properly....
aside from teaching the students, observing the required teaching strategies from SLT or OFSTED, dealing with interventions (of all descriptions), completing paperwork, ensuring lessons are prepared ahead of time, keeping up with CPD, being the face of friendly lead learners, monitoring corridor activity of the more energetic pupils etc etc... there's not much time for suggesting and then managing an app.

Helping schools in pressurised environments (Safeguarding)

This morning a school rang to ask about our registration app.
This is an app that some sixth forms use to check-in students who perhaps have more freedom around school than students in younger year groups. Our app allows a sixth former to check in provided they can be located within defined geographical areas of the school using  GPS location through a branded school app that we provide.. When the student checks in they can select their activity from an appropriate list set by the school. This "registration" can then be written back to the MIS.

How one school used an app

A medium sized primary school in Hertfordshire approached us two years ago to produce an app. With a school roll of some 400 pupils, their motivation was entirely around reducing the cost of messaging between the school and parents.

Parent engagement, how effective can an app be?

Speak to any app company and they will tell you that an app is the best way to engage your parents. And in the internet world this is the generally perceived wisdom. More and more people are spending more and more and more time on their phones and particularly looking at apps.

So I thought it would be an interesting exercise to look at a real world example.

Your new year parent app checklist

Now that the sunshine has gone and it feels like summer is over it feels like we should be focusing on the new school year hear at apps for schools.
We are now helping many schools prepare their parent communication apps for the new starters arriving in September, making sure the app is ready to deceiver the info they need.
So I thought it would be worth posting a short checklist of things to complete in the app to get ready: 

Can I build an app?

I have been building websites for schools for many years now, and a reoccurring theme is schools asking “Can’t we just build a website ourselves?”
The answer of course is Yes, there are a huge amount of tools out there that enable you to quite cost effectively launch a website. You may have to use generic template and be prepared to compromise on certain functions but with a little knowledge you could have a website to be proud of.
Now a question that I have never been asked until very recently was “Can we just build an App for ourselves?”

Open forum school apps

I recently had a discussion with a headteacher about the possibility of including an open student forum within their app.

It is something we have discussed here at apps for schools on a few occasions but each time it was felt by the school that the possibility of abuse meant that the pros were outweighed the cons.

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