WASHINGTON, DC AND SCOTTS VALLEY, CA, January 13, 2016 — West Corporation’s trusted platform for school community engagement, SchoolMessenger, today announced a collaboration with the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA) to jointly host a webinar to help schools improve the effectiveness of parent communications and their compliance with updated federal regulations.
In mid-2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued new guidance on its rules regarding the 1991 Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). TCPA generally forbids calls made using automated dialing systems to any telephone number assigned to a mobile phone without prior express consent (or opt-in). The FCC treats an SMS text message in the same way as a voice call. There are exceptions for calls and texts made for “emergency purposes.”
However, in the quarter century since TCPA was enacted, the variety of communications options available to both schools and parents has multiplied. Not only has smartphone adoption skyrocketed, but voice calls and SMS text messages have been joined by email, websites, social media, and mobile app push notifications.
“It’s the best use of the current mix of communications channels to engage a school community that’s key to effective parent communication,” said Rich Bagin, executive director of NSPRA. “Most communication professionals understand the critical importance and impact of their programs. We’re partnering with SchoolMessenger, which has been at the forefront of K-12 communication technology since 1999, to help schools navigate this constantly evolving landscape.”
The webinar, which is open to NSPRA members, SchoolMessenger customers, and other professionals responsible for school communications, will be held on Wednesday, February 3 at 10 am Pacific/1 pm Eastern. Among the experts providing tips, identifying best practices and citing tools will be NSPRA’s Bagin, SchoolMessenger’s Vice President of Government Affairs Mark Schneiderman (formerly of the Software and Information Industry Association), and SchoolMessenger’s Senior Vice President Nate Brogan.
“The FCC’s recent action clarifying TCPA has helped highlight the need to use an intelligent combination of methods to reach parents,” said SchoolMessenger’s Brogan. “Schools have to be prepared to quickly and efficiently handle recipient consent and preferences, and both we and the districts we work with have a wealth of experience to share in these areas.”
Participants in the webinar will also receive a white paper detailing best practices, and information about other new notification system tools to aid them in both improving TCPA compliance and effective communications.
To register for the February 3 webinar, visit www.schoolmessenger.com/TCPAwebinar.
SchoolMessenger products, part of West Corporation, are K-12’s most-trusted communications solutions. Thousands of schools and other educational institutions in all 50 U.S. states and Canada depend on SchoolMessenger products and services. From notifications and websites to custom mobile apps and social media, school leaders have relied on the SchoolMessenger platform since 1999 to engage with their communities in multiple languages and on any device. To learn more about SchoolMessenger, visit www.schoolmessenger.com or call 888.527.5225.