ParentSquare is the premier unified school-to-home communications platform for K-12 education

App of the Week

 

ParentSquare is the premier school-to-home engagement platform for K-12 education. It is the only fully unified product that engages every family with school communications and communications-based services — all the way from the district office to the classroom teacher, and all in one place. Schools know who is not being reached, and have the reports and tools to improve contactability and communications equity while maintaining privacy and security. With the two-way communication platform, districts and schools can engage all families, regardless of language or socioeconomic barriers. By enabling easy parent involvement and staff collaboration, ParentSquare helps build strong school communities, enhancing student learning and success.

 

Formats/platforms used:

ParentSquare is a cloud-based platform for two-way school-home communications. It offers extensive integrations with student information systems (SIS) and other critical administrative systems, and offers single sign-on capabilities. ParentSquare integrates with all student information systems via API or SFTP.

ParentSquare also features translation to more than 100 languages, as well as app, email, text, voice, and web portal access for equitable communication.

 

Primary website URL:

https://www.parentsquare.com/

 

 

Problem solved:

ParentSquare was created by a parent in 2011 in response to the everyday communications challenges that families and educators encounter. Before ParentSquare, districts, schools, and teachers used different tools, platforms, and apps to communicate with families, which often made it confusing and difficult for parents and guardians to keep up. When Anupama Vaid, a computer engineer, took a sabbatical from work to be with her young school-age children, she experienced first-hand the difference in how connected she was with her kids’ life at school as a stay-at-home mom. She founded ParentSquare to bring the same connectedness to every family at school.

ParentSquare unifies district-, school-, and classroom-level communications to families, and enables two-way messaging and communications-based school services. With ParentSquare, districts and schools can consolidate and streamline all of their communication and parent engagement tools under one easy-to-use platform. They can also replace teacher-adopted classroom messaging tools easily with the platform, with district-level oversight and one archive for all school communication.

 

 

ParentSquare is made for family engagement and communications equity. With one unified school-to-home communications platform — for everything from the district’s mass notifications and mobile app to conference signups and permission slips — districts can streamline support, save time, and empower educators and families. Reports and analytics allow district and school leaders to easily measure and improve engagement with visual reports on parent reach and participation.

ParentSquare safeguards the confidentiality of all information collected by adhering to industry-leading security protocols for data transfer and storage. It is fully compliant with FERPA and COPPA, and ParentSquare is a proud signatory of the Student Privacy Pledge.

With a powerful school-to-home engagement platform used by everyone at their schools:

  • District and school leaders can increase family engagement, build advocacy within their community, and improve parent satisfaction.
  • Tech leaders can protect privacy and security, streamline support and training, and gain visibility and oversight.
  • Comms officers can increase contactability and communications equity, ensure branding consistency, and gain visibility and oversight.
  • Principals can create a positive climate with open two-way communication, establish trust and parent loyalty, eliminate third-party apps that aren’t secure, and reduce administrative overhead.
  • Teachers can reduce administrative tasks, communicate with a family in their preferred language, and increase parent contributions to the classroom.
  • Parents can know what’s going on, easily stay involved and connected, and support their child’s success.

 

Grade range:

ParentSquare is built for K-12 districts and schools in the United States. It serves districts with 100,000+ students all the way down to single-site schools.

 

Pricing model:

Pricing is based on a per student annual fee, plus a one-time onboarding fee. Feature bundles can be customized to a district or school’s communication needs. There is a minimum subscription package for a single school site of $3,000 per year.

 

Additional services needed?

All ParentSquare accounts include unlimited use. There are no limits on administrative or parent/guardian users or on the sending of text, voice, email, and app notifications, so districts or schools will never be hit with unexpected usage fees for core school-home communications.

 

What makes ParentSquare unique?

ParentSquare is the only fully unified product that engages every family with school communications and communications-based services — and all in one place. It features:

 

  • Unified communications tools, from the district office to the classroom.

ParentSquare users can send alerts and mass notifications, classroom communications, and one-to-one or group parent and student messages — and share communications through a web portal and on social media — with tools built to work together.

 

  • Fully integrated forms, workflows, and other school services.

Interactive services such as forms, conferences, attendance, and progress reports can be directly embedded into communications.

 

  • Complete administrative oversight, security, and reporting.

ParentSquare users can rely on role-based permissions and audit logging from the district to the classroom using industry-standard security protocols and adherence to FERPA, COPPA and other privacy protections — with deep analytics and visual reports.

 

  • Accurate and up-to-date contact details.

ParentSquare users can consolidate all parent contact information and preferences — voice, email, text, app — into one login account with Pure Contact functionality for contact data management, verification, and updates.

 

 

Characteristics:

ParentSquare is made for family engagement and communications equity. With its consistent and familiar post interface, users from the district office and the classroom to home immediately find it easy to use and notice that it resembles tools they use on a daily basis.

  • ParentSquare maximizes parent engagement and ensures consistency with all the mass communication tools district leaders need including alerts, internal and external social media posts, communications and newsletters, secure student-specific document delivery, and automated attendance notices and lunch balances.
  • It empowers teachers to reach every family with the classroom communication tools and channels they need at their fingertips, e.g., one-to-one and group messaging, signups for volunteering and supplies, parent-teacher conference sign-ups and reminders, messages and alerts to students, and searchable directories.
  • It provides fully integrated school services, with embedded interactive forms, documents, and other services to increase response rates and participation, e.g., forms and permission slips, appointment sign-ups, invoices and payments, calendar and RSVP options, surveys and polls, health screening workflows, and student-specific documents such as progress reports or IEPs.

In all, the intuitive platform with seamless data integrations allow for quick onboarding and a wonderful user experience for all stakeholders.

 

Here’s what users are sying:

“ParentSquare is hands-down the best investment our district has made when it comes to engaging and communicating with students, parents and staff. We have been able to raise the reach and frequency to our stakeholders. Our principals and school office supervisors all rave about its ease of use, and our families appreciate the various ways in which to receive info via posts, emails, texts, app, website or all call.”

— Marci McFadden, Chief of Communication and Engagement, Monterey Peninsula USD, CA

 

“Switching over to ParentSquare has been the best decision for our district. The bridge between the elementary, junior and high level is very apparent. We’re reaching 98% of families in our district and our parent engagement levels are higher than ever!”

— Dennis Haynie, Director of Technology, Andrews ISD, TX

 

“ParentSquare is the best tool we’ve invested in all year. It’s raised the quality of our communication with our families and best of all, our parents, teachers and staff love it! The user experience is well thought out and the product speaks for itself.”

— Leah Davis, Principal, Ridge Road Middle, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, NC

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