In the past months, we've had an incredible time; more and more teachers are signing up for Bloomz to communicate with parents and save time along the way. We have now also been hearing from their schools, who are now reaching out to us interested in using our app for school-wide communications too!
In this process, we've heard the need for additional controls for both teachers and school administrators, to ensure they can manage the communications in their school or classroom community, while keeping the channels open for group or individual communications.
This is why, today, we are launching two new controls in our app: 1) A setting for teachers and school administrators to disable parent-to-parent communication in their classroom or school community; and, 2) the ability for users to reply privately to a post.
Parent to Parent Communication Controls:
Teachers have told us how much they love the community environment that comes from interacting with parents and their participation in the classroom-related discussions enabled by Bloomz. It is something that, with time, teachers and schools both learn to embrace and encourage.
Having said that, some teachers and school administrators might feel they are not ready and want to steadily open up the community for open dialogue between parents, so they want the option to do so at their own time.
Starting today, they can. Educators can now decide whether parents can communicate with other parents in the classroom or school community.
To enable or disable this feature, simply go to your class Settings (little cog on the top of your Class page on the web, or on the 'more' section on your mobile), and scroll down to "Parent to Parent Communication". You can also set it while creating a new class:
When Parent to Parent Communication is disabled:
- Parents cannot post to other parents
- Parents cannot send a message to other parents in the class
- Parents cannot see other parents in the Members tab of the class
- Parents can still Post to Teachers/ Admins/ Room Parents roles
- Parents can still message to Teachers / Admins roles
It is not uncommon that someone's post to the community will generate comments from other members for everyone to see, to keep a conversation going or to generate new thoughts. But sometimes you just want to respond directly to the person who made that post, without opening up a public discussion. Today, we are introducing a feature that will make it easy for both parents and teachers to reply to posts privately.
Now, when you see a post on your feed, you will notice a small text link reading "Reply Privately". When you click/tap on it, it will open up a dialogue between you an the original poster. Your reply can even include a small snippet of the conversation so the poster knows what you are responding to.
So, next time you post the work kids are taking home, and parents have a question specific to their kids, they don't need to comment on it letting everyone know personal details, they can simply reply privately to you and get their questions answered.
With these additions, we are giving even more controls to teachers and school administrators to manage their communities as they need, not only enabling conversations, but also enabling the right amount of conversations they consider appropriate.
Notice these features are currently only available on your desktop and on your iPhone or iPad, and will soon be available on Android as well. Please give them a try and let us know what you think in the comments section below.