How to engage students and parents through WhatsApp broadcast

Parents following the programme during Form One orientation.

By Ashford Gikunda

In the age of digital connectivity, leveraging technology to enhance communication between schools and parents has become increasingly essential. WhatsApp, with its widespread usage and accessibility, offers a powerful platform for schools to disseminate information efficiently.

By utilising the broadcast feature effectively, schools and parents can establish a seamless communication channel that fosters collaboration and involvement in the educational journey of students.

WhatsApp broadcast allows schools to instantly convey important updates to parents. Whether it’s about school closures due to unforeseen circumstances, upcoming events, or reminders about submission deadlines, broadcasting messages ensures that crucial information reaches parents promptly. This real-time communication helps parents stay informed and enables them to plan accordingly.

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With WhatsApp broadcast, schools can segment their audience and send targeted messages to specific groups of parents based on relevant criteria such as grade level, class section, or co-curricular activities. This targeted approach ensures that parents receive information that is tailored to their child’s academic journey, making communication more personalised and impactful.

By leveraging multimedia capabilities such as images, videos, and documents, schools can create engaging content that captures parents’ attention and effectively conveys information. Whether it’s sharing highlights from school events, educational resources, or showcasing student achievements, multimedia messages make communication more interactive and enriching for parents.

WhatsApp broadcast facilitates a two-way communication between schools and parents, allowing for feedback and interaction. Schools can solicit feedback from parents on various initiatives, gather suggestions for improvement, and address concerns or queries in a timely manner.

This feedback loop fosters a collaborative relationship between schools and parents, promoting transparency and accountability.
In the fast-paced environment of education, reminders play a crucial role in ensuring that parents are aware of upcoming deadlines, parent-teacher meetings, and other important events. WhatsApp broadcast enables schools to send timely notifications and reminders, helping parents stay organised and engaged in their child’s academic journey.

Compared to traditional methods such as printing newsletters or sending letters home with students, WhatsApp broadcast offers a cost-effective alternative for schools to communicate with parents. By leveraging existing technology and infrastructure, schools can minimise communication costs while maximizing reach and efficiency.

WhatsApp prioritizes user privacy and security, offering end-to-end encryption to protect the confidentiality of messages exchanged between schools and parents. This ensures that sensitive information remains secure and inaccessible to unauthorised parties, instilling confidence in parents regarding the confidentiality of their communication with the school.

WhatsApp broadcast serves as a platform for fostering a sense of community among parents, teachers, and school administrators. By facilitating communication and collaboration, it creates opportunities for parents to connect with each other — share experiences — and support one another in navigating the challenges and joys of parenthood and education.

In conclusion, WhatsApp broadcast presents a powerful tool for schools and parents to enhance communication and collaboration in the educational ecosystem. By leveraging its instant updates, targeted messaging, multimedia capabilities, feedback mechanism, timely notifications, cost-effectiveness, privacy, and community-building features, schools can establish a seamless communication channel that fosters engagement, transparency, and partnership between all stakeholders.
Embracing technology to strengthen the bond between schools and parents is essential in creating a supportive and enriching educational environment for students to thrive.

Ashford teaches English and Literature in Gatundu North Sub County.

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