Hopkins Co. schools new calling system makes it easier for parents to keep tabs on kids

HOPKINS CO., KY (WFIE) - A new calling system is improving communication with parents in the Hopkins County School District.

In the event of an emergency or possible school closing, every second counts when it comes to relaying information to parents.

"Parent communication is very important," noted Director of Technology Shari Winstead.

Winstead says, in years past, they've had a similar alert system, but improvements were needed.

"Parents wanted the opportunity to have different phone numbers called and even get an email or text message and we weren't able to do that with our other system."

Now, parents have those options and Winstead says, along with school closings, or outreach notifications, alerts of failing grades, missing assignments, and bad behavior can be requested.

"If we ever have an emergency message, it'll go to every single contact method that we have in our student information system," Winstead noted.

The new system will also inform parents about attendance issues. Director of Pupil Personnel Brad Johnson says if any student is either absent or tardy, an alert will be sent home at around 9:00 in the morning and 6:00 in the evening.

"Parents go off to work and a lot of times, they assume their child's at school and on an occasion children choose not to make that choice," Johnson said. "So, this way we can notify them and give them a heads up to check into their situation."

School officials say they also have a Twitter and Facebook page where parents can find routine updates, but they're just hoping this updated calling system is a benefit to the district.

"If it becomes an issue, we'll adjust," Johnson said. "Like I saidn this is a new system for us."

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