Case Studies

Case Studies

We are confident that along with improving the safety of your pupils, Groupcall Messenger can save your school time and money.

However, don’t just take our word for it! By reading our case studies you can see
examples of how Messenger has directly benefited its users.

 

Primary School Case Studies

Cavendish Community Primary School

Cavendish Community Primary School

Cavendish Community Primary School is a large school on the outskirts of Manchester City Centre that has been serving the community since 1904. It’s extremely diverse with 70% of pupils being from ethnic minorities. The school fosters a vibrant, inclusive and happy environment...

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Snaresbrook Independent Preparatory School

Snaresbrook Independent Preparatory School

Founded in the early 1930's, Snaresbrook Preparatory School is an Independent school based in South Woodford, London. With Groupcall Messenger, they are now able to send reminders to parents regarding all aspects of their child's school life. See how Snaresbrook Independent Preparatory School is working towards a paper-free newsletter system with Groupcall Messenger...

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Flakefleet Flies

Flakefleet flies as absences hit an all time low

In 2007, Flakefleet Primary School had missed attendance targets for five to six years prior. A key action from the last Ofsted report stated "Improve the attendance of the small minority of persistent absentees to increase their rates of progress and so raise their attainment". See how they did this with Groupcall Messenger...

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Groupcall Messenger helps school find a missing child

Groupcall Messenger helps school find a missing child

As part of their first day contact procedure, West End Middle School in Kirklees use Groupcall Messenger to contact the parents and guardians of pupils who are marked in the register as unauthorised absent. Messages are sent to instantly inform them that their child is not at school, and asks them to provide a reason for this...

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Groupcall Messenger helps school find a missing child

As part of their first day contact procedure, West End Middle School in Kirklees use Groupcall Messenger to contact the parents and guardians of pupils who are marked in the register as unauthorised absent. Messages are sent to instantly inform them that their child is not at school, and asks them to provide a reason for this. Shortly after becoming a subscriber, the school had the opportunity to see how effective Groupcall Messenger can be in an emergency situation, when the parent of a pupil responded to the school’s first day contact text message, to say that they did not know where their child was. “The pupil’s Mum thought that their child was at school as usual”, explains Joanne, West End Middle School’s Business Manager. “After receiving the unauthorised absence text she contacted the school straight away in a panic to inform us that she didn’t know where her child was”. Following on from this the school organised a search party to patrol the local area. “The pupil turned up at her Grandma’s house”, quipped Joanne. “Before we installed Groupcall Messenger it would have taken us much longer to establish that the child was missing, the system improves the safety of pupils by allowing us to contact parents instantly”. The school is also a fan of the multilingual, group and remote access features of Messenger; Joanne remarked that Groupcall Messenger has improved the relationship with those who do not speak English as a first language. “Now that we can contact them in their own language, we can communicate with our families from Poland. Without Groupcall Messenger it is much harder to contact these individuals”. Upon arrival on their recent school trip to France, the teacher in charge sent a text message to parents of the pupils to inform them that their children had arrived safely. “Along with being assured that their children were safe, parents replied to the text to wish their kids a good time on the trip. The teacher was able to relay these messages back to the pupils”!

For more information - Please contact us at: sales@groupcall.com

Helmshore Primary School

Helmshore Primary School

A primary school in Rossendale is turning to SMS and voice messaging technology to improve levels of communication with parents and keep them better informed of school developments. Helmshore Primary School, which has 340 pupils on roll, has successfully completed a two-month pilot of the Groupcall Messenger system and has now decided to move forward with its permanent installation...

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Helmshore Primary School

A primary school in Rossendale is turning to SMS and voice messaging technology to improve levels of communication with parents and keep them better informed of school developments. Helmshore Primary School, which has 340 pupils on roll, has successfully completed a two-month pilot of the Groupcall Messenger system and has now decided to move forward with its permanent installation. The system allows schools to simultaneously send automated and pre-recorded voice and SMS messages to the landlines or mobile phones of parents, staff or other school contacts and is in use throughout the UK for absence management, emergency response and to enhance pupil safety. “We have found ourselves using the system extensively over the past couple of months to advise parents about the cancellation of football matches and, during the recent snow, to send one message to all parents to let them know that we would be open as usual,” explains school administrator, Sarah Jones. “Having the system in place has saved an enormous amount of time that would otherwise have been spent making and fielding calls, because parents have already received a message with the information they need.” Feedback from parents has been overwhelmingly positive and the school has even had some parents contacting them to ensure that both parents’ mobile numbers are included on the school’s database, providing a very useful way of ensuring that the school’s contact data is kept up to date. “We have already identified other uses for the system, from sending parents a reminder of the time of their appointments at Parents’ Evenings to confirming or otherwise whether school sports days will be going ahead,” adds Sarah. “If you’re a parent, the Groupcall Messenger system means not only an improved flow of communication from your child’s school, but also the security of knowing that if your child does not arrive at school, you will be quickly alerted to the fact. It reduces the amount of cost and administration time spent by school staff on the telephone and vastly improves ease of contact between school and parent,” explains Groupcall’s Lawrence Royston.

For more information - Please contact us at: sales@groupcall.com

Swine Flu School closure – Groupcall goes the extra mile

Swine Flu School closure – Groupcall goes the extra mile

Campsbourne Primary had only been subscribers of Groupcall Messenger for a short period of time when a case of Swine Flu forced the entire school to close. “Children were going off sick, so we decided to close the entire school” describes Rahat Aboobaker the schools Business Manager...

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Swine Flu School closure – Groupcall goes the extra mile

Campsbourne Primary had only been subscribers of Groupcall Messenger for a short period of time when a case of Swine Flu forced the entire school to close. “Children were going off sick, so we decided to close the entire school” describes Rahat Aboobaker the schools Business Manager. “We used Groupcall Messenger to contact all of our parents instantly by text. Our initial message reached 75% of our parents. We then used Groupcall’s message analyser tool to identify parents who did not receive the message (due to having their mobile phones switched off or having out of date contact details), and called them manually”. “Whilst the school was closed we continued to keep parents updated on the latest situation. Following on from our initial contact, many parents who we initially could not communicate with via Groupcall Messenger recognised the value of the service and provided us with updated contact details. By the end of the week we were able to contact 90% of our parents via Messenger.” During the week of the closure the local Primary Care Trust gave the school extremely short notice that they would be visiting to distribute flu medication to parents. Rahat explains that “We sent out a message to parents via Groupcall Messenger, and were impressed that in the middle of the day 50% of parents turned up at the school to collect the medication with only an hours notice. Without Messenger we would have found it impossible to communicate the message”. Rahat commented on how delighted she and the school were with the service they have received from Groupcall. “They went the extra mile to support all of our needs, and provided an outside of the box service”. Following on from the Swine Flu closure the school has upgraded to Groupcall Messenger’s Unlimited Text tariff.

For more information - Please contact us at: sales@groupcall.com

Secondary School Case Studies

Highgate Wood Secondary School

Highgate Wood Secondary School

Groupcall is now a central part of our communications system and is vital for every day activities. We have used Messenger to send attendance alerts and information to parents/carers about events, Ofsted visits and to inform parents that the school would be closed due to snow. The system really does allow us to send messages immediately to students and families as and when required and has proved invaluable in the case of an emergency.

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Rush Croft Sports College - using Messenger and Emerge!

Rush Croft Sports College - using Messenger and Emerge!

The school needed a solution that would better adhere to the legal registration obligations and ensuring that registration happens by 9.30am is a difficult task for many schools when lessons take place off site with high numbers of pupils.

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Rainey Endowed School, Northern Ireland

Rainey Endowed School, Northern Ireland

Multiple uses and a great investment! The Rainey Endowed School, known colloquially as "The Rainey", is a voluntary grammar school in Magherafelt, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. The school was founded in 1707 by Hugh Rainey, an iron smelter and wealthy merchant in the Magherafelt district. In his will he devoted half of his estate to fund a charity school for 24 boys and wrote "that what I have left may not only be for a generation or two, but that it may be for many not yet born" - the school now has an enrolment of 700 pupils!

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Rush Croft Sports College

Rush Croft Sports College

Attendance has improved, communication with parents made easier and telephone bills cut by an estimated £800 per year at Rush Croft Sports College, a 900-student secondary school in Chingford, East London, since the school installed Groupcall’s Messenger text and voice alert system...

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Rush Croft Sports College, Chingford

Attendance has improved, communication with parents made easier and telephone bills cut by an estimated £800 per year at Rush Croft Sports College, a 900-student secondary school in Chingford, East London, since the school installed Groupcall’s Messenger text and voice alert system. “We used the system recently to let parents know that the school was going to be closed due to adverse weather,” explains Attendance Officer, Gareth Hunt. “Ordinarily that would be a process that would take us at least two hours. But, using the Groupcall system, we were able to contact all parents with either a text or voice message in around two minutes. And given that a text is cheaper than a call to a mobile, we estimate that we have been saving around £200 per quarter on our telephone bills in the year since we started using the system.” Groupcall Messenger allows schools to send text messages (SMS) to the mobile phones of parents, staff and other school contacts or voice messages to landlines or mobile phones, or emails in any language for a low monthly subscription fee. The system was developed in consultation with primary and secondary schools and provides First Day Contact, unauthorised absence chasing and general parental communication all in one integrated desktop solution. The Groupcall system reads student attendance information live and in real time from the school’s management system. Independent data from the Scottish Executive has proven that the system reduces truancy by nearly 30% and the system has also had a noticeable impact on attendance at Rush Croft. “Parents have told us they like getting the messages by text because it gives them a chance to respond when it’s most convenient for them to do so,” adds Gareth. “And we have seen a knock-on effect in school, where attendance among the few persistent absentees has improved since we started sending the message alerts.” Since installing the system a year ago, Rush Croft has found itself increasingly using Groupcall Messenger as a routine channel of communication with parents, keeping them informed about a range of other school issues, from reminders about parents evenings and sports days to appraising them of issues more directly relevant to their individual children. With students, particularly where there may be a concern about behaviour, the school has started sending messages to let parents know whether their child’s behaviour on a particular day has been good or not. This keeps them more easily in the loop and enables them to have an informed conversation with their children at home in the evening. Messenger is installed in more than 750 primary and secondary schools throughout the UK, enabling all absences to be quickly investigated to ensure they are genuine and known about by parents. In doing so, it also drastically reduces administration time spent on the telephone and saves on telephone costs, providing an inexpensive and robust method of contacting all or groups of parents in the event of an emergency or change to the normal school day. The system has been deliberately designed to be affordable. Subscription is geared to the number of pupils on roll. The result is that it can be offered to schools for approximately £1 per pupil per year. There is no additional cost for each email but there is a small additional monthly fee for schools wanting the email capability. The software works with existing computers, existing telephony and existing infrastructure. There is no requirement on the school for data entry; installation causes no disruption to the day-to-day running of the school, and nor are schools tied in to long-term contracts. For further information regarding remote messaging, and other key Messenger features that are not present in other communication systems, such as email, multilingual voice calls and the ability for parents to reply to texts, please contact us via info@groupcall.com

For more information - Please contact us at: sales@groupcall.com

The Warriner School

The Warriner School

Located in Bloxham, North Oxfordshire, The Warriner School is a mixed secondary school. After actively researching the parental communication system market, administration staff were particularly impressed with Groupcall Messenger. The school’s administration team were tasked with the challenge of sourcing an effective parental communication system that would be simple to integrate, improve efficiencies and save costs...

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The Warriner School

Located in Bloxham, North Oxfordshire, The Warriner School is a mixed secondary school. After actively researching the parental communication system market, administration staff were particularly impressed with Groupcall Messenger. The school’s administration team were tasked with the challenge of sourcing an effective parental communication system that would be simple to integrate, improve efficiencies and save costs. Wanting to make an informed decision, the staff conducted extensive research. The school’s administration manager, Leigh Barmby, commented: “Messenger stood out against its competitors, yet we were slightly nervous about introducing such a system, thinking it might increase workload. However, thankfully these were worries that did not unfold.” To gauge the effectiveness of parental communication systems, The Warriner School trialled Messenger. “The trial installation quickly demonstrated that Messenger was ideal; we therefore signed up to the service. Groupcall provided extensive training and a friendly and efficient service throughout,” revealed Leigh. With Messenger’s ability to flag up when a child has not been registered, it means that same day contact can be achieved, with the school able to text message parents to inform them of an absence. Leigh explained: “Fortunately, absences have not yet been due to emergencies. However, having the ability to ensure same day follow-up means emergencies can be dealt with quickly; preventing problems from escalating.” The school has reported numerous benefits since Messenger’s implementation. Leigh has been impressed with its simple integration and the high level of self-sufficiency it delivers. With five different users, the heads of each school house have individual accounts which they use to communicate with specific pupils’ parents and with Messenger located on their desktops it is straightforward to find on the school network. Messenger is also cost effective, as Leigh reports: “We have already seen substantial fiscal savings through avoiding costs associated with traditional communication; it costs approximately £1.20 to send a letter, in comparison, texting via Messenger costs only 6p. Prior to implementation the school had a £9,000 postal bill and although newly introduced, Messenger has significantly reduced costs.” Since Messenger guarantees faster delivery of messages compared to traditional methods of communication, overall time management for administration staff has improved. Contacting pupils takes less time since the service does this automatically with just the click of a few buttons as Leigh confirmed: “Over 75 per cent of our correspondence now goes out via email, which parents particularly like.” The benefit of guaranteed and effective communication that The Warriner School has reported has extended to improving relationships. “With efficient contact facilitated, this overcomes barriers in communication between the school and its key stakeholders, and further welcomes parents into the school community. Messenger has also positively impacted the school’s relationships with governors and members of the PTA.” said Leigh. With Messenger’s ability to integrate with the school’s MIS, constant and effective contact can be made. Leigh commented: “Messenger uses the contact information on our MIS to send emails. This saves the time consuming process of having to maintain a separate database and then send emails from a regular email programme.” The Warriner School is extremely satisfied with Groupcall’s service and Messenger’s benefits: “It’s reassuring to know that a member of the technical team will immediately strive to resolve any hitches. There is huge scope for how we could use Messenger but at present we are just thrilled to have implemented such a valuable solution,” concluded Leigh. For further information regarding remote messaging, and other key Messenger features that are not present in other communication systems, such as email, multilingual voice calls and the ability for parents to reply to texts, please contact us via info@groupcall.com.

For more information - Please contact us at: sales@groupcall.com

Lockerbie Academy

Lockerbie Academy

Lockerbie Academy in Dumfriesshire has been a Groupcall Messenger customer for over 5 years. The School uses Messenger as part of its regular communication strategy to send unauthorised absence notices, parental reminders, and engage parents with academic and pastoral information. One of the key features that the school relies upon is the ability to send messages remotely from any location using an internet connected computer or mobile internet device...

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Lockerbie Academy

Lockerbie Academy in Dumfriesshire has been a Groupcall Messenger customer for over 5 years. The School uses Messenger as part of its regular communication strategy to send unauthorised absence notices, parental reminders, and engage parents with academic and pastoral information. One of the key features that the school relies upon is the ability to send messages remotely from any location using an internet connected computer or mobile internet device. The disruption to air travel due to the Icelandic Volcano eruption has been an ideal opportunity for the school to take advantage of remote messaging. This is a key feature that is not included in many other systems. “We run an annual pupil exchange with a school in New Jersey”, explains Graham Herbert, the school’s Rector. “The Volcanic ash cloud grounded all flights in the UK on the Thursday, which was the day before the pupils were due to depart. Using Groupcall Messenger we were able to instantly inform the host families of the exchange pupils exactly what the latest situation was and keep them up-to-date. The real strength of Groupcall Messenger is it’s ability to allow us to remotely communicate with parents from outside of the school. The situation was constantly being reassessed, and it was necessary for us to send messages outside of normal office hours. This was particularly vital in the evenings, especially when it became apparent that airspace closures were going to continue over the weekend. As our host families were spread out over a rural area, we were able to coordinate proceedings without the need to have a member of staff constantly in school sending out messages, or manually calling 14 families numerous times a day. The American exchange pupils returned home safely the following Wednesday, 5 days later than scheduled. Communicating and coordinating this situation would have been extremely difficult without Messenger and its remote messaging capabilities”. Aside from the ash cloud incident, Lockerbie Academy runs a number of international trips each year. Amongst other things the school utilises remote messaging to send electronic postcards home, informing parents that their child has arrived safely at their destination, and communicating when pupils are close to home so that they can be collected upon arrival. Graham was keen to add “In general we save money using Groupcall Messenger, not only is it cheaper than traditional forms of correspondence, but digital communications are also more appealing to recipients. Furthermore, messages are also more likely to reach the intended destination, rather than getting lost in pupil’s bags”! “In situations such as the Ash cloud, cost becomes immaterial, and the key functionality and reliability of a communication system such as Messenger really shines through.” For further information regarding remote messaging, and other key Messenger features that are not present in other communication systems, such as email, multilingual voice calls and the ability for parents to reply to texts, please contact us via info@groupcall.com.

For more information - Please contact us at: sales@groupcall.com

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