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Elevating Attendance with KiNVO’s Mobile App

By Tips and Resources

mobile-app-kinvo_welcome

The new year means new webinars! To kick off 2017 we are hosting a webinar on Thursday, January 12th and Thursday, January 19th at 3pm on KiNVO’s mobile app (RSVP here)! Webinars are only 30 minutes long, because we know our users have busy schedules. If you aren’t able to join us, read on for some easy guidelines to follow on this topic!

KiNVO is available on both iOS and Android. KiNVO’s mobile app is intended to complement our teacher and administrator’s “on the go” lifestyle and saves them time by giving them access to their rosters in the palm of their hands.  With lightweight ways to record attendance, send messages to parents, manage parent contacts, and receive push notifications, the mobile app complements your web app experience.

Our hope is that KiNVO mobile’s new push notifications remind our teachers and administrators to record attendance every day, and reply to parents in a faster manner. Our push notifications offer:

  • Real-time notification of parent response to a message.
  • Daily digest of parent responses with a notification once every day at 3pm.
  • Daily reminder at 5pm to record attendance for any courses that users forgot to record attendance.
  • Updates about new features, tips, and tricks to use KiNVO (the KiNVO team can send you personalized messages about new features).

How can parents get involved with KiNVO’s mobile app? At Kinvolved we are committed to closing today’s digital gap. According to the Pew Research Center, only 41% of people without a high school degree have a smartphone, and just 52% of people earning $30K or less have one. This starkly contrasts with the 81% of people who earn $75-100K.

For this reason, we have chosen to focus on utilizing SMS to communicate with parents, versus building a parent-facing smartphone app for our parent community demographic. This means that parents need not download or log into an app to access teachers via KiNVO. In fact, they don’t even require a smartphone. To receive KiNVO’s SMS, they simply need a basic cell phone.

Watch this video to learn more about how KiNVO’s mobile app can work for you.  

What else would you like available in you KiNVO mobile app? Write to us at support@kinvolved.com as to how we can improve your mobile experience. Know someone who needs KiNVO? Contact us for more information!
And, as always, we encourage you to share our product on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram! Reach out to us if you have a specific topic in mind for a future webinar!

Preventing Holiday Absences

By Tips and Resources

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The end of the year is quickly approaching. Students and teachers are finalizing class projects, and families are organizing how to spend the holidays. The weather worsens, and colder temperatures and snow inhibit traveling to and from school. Unfortunately, every year, absences spike in the weeks before and after winter break.

Although one absence here and there does not seem to make a big impact, absences add up to months of missed learning time. This is true in any grade. Here are some tips on how teachers and administrators can encourage attendance this holiday season:

  • Send out a letter before and after the longer winter break urging families and students to avoid absences. Attendance Works offers a sample letter that positively highlights the tolls that absenteeism takes on achievement in both English and Spanish.
  • The Los Angeles Unified School district has successfully implemented some of the following ideas:
  1. Plan an event that will bring families, students, and teachers together. “This can be an awards assembly, holiday program, or a service opportunity.”
  2. Engage students in community action, with anything from a food-bank distribution, toy drive, or winter coat closet. Encourage participation by organizing competitions between different grade levels to see who collects the most donations!
  3. Give a recognition award to the classroom with the best attendance before and after the holidays.
  4. Organize an assembly where you recognize the 10 students from each grade with the best attendance during the week before and after winter break.
  5. Create lesson plans for teachers in early December that stress the importance of attendance.
  6. Develop a seasonal theme such as:
    1. Celebrating a Season of Good Attendance
    2. Giving the Gift of Attendance
    3. On the First Day of Attendance My Teacher Gave to Me
    4. Stuffing our Stockings with Good Attendance
    5. Good Attendance is Coming to Town

Make sure to take advantage of Kinvo by Kinvolved to promote these ideas! With our new picture messaging feature, you could send a flyer with bullet points from the sample letter by Attendance Works. You can also send quick, translated messages reminding families of these events.

What are you doing to encourage attendance during the holidays? Share your ideas with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram!

New to Kinvo? Contact us to learn more.

Attendance Data

By Tips and Resources

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On Tuesday, November 22 at 3pm Kinvo by Kinvolved is hosting our last webinar of the month (RSVP here)! Our first webinar covered how to record attendance on our mobile and web app. Our second webinar discussed how to have positive parent communication, and our third most recent one covered two-way translations. Finally, our last webinar will be covering a very important topic: attendance data. Webinars are only 30 minutes long, because we know our users have busy schedules. If you aren’t able to join us, read on for some easy guidelines to follow on this topic!

It wasn’t until the release of the first ever, “National Data set on Chronic Absence” by the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, in June of this year that anyone had held up a mirror to chronic absenteeism on a national scale. The report claimed, “When our teachers, principals, policymakers, and others have access to robust data on the extent and nature of chronic absenteeism, we are all in a better position to provide students with the supports they need to stem this crisis in our schools.” Since then, chronic absenteeism has garnered more and more attention in the media.

In fact, a recent report from the Hamilton Project at the Brookings Institution “suggests that the best choice states could make, if they really want to make a difference, is to require schools to use chronic absence data. The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) “requires state accountability systems to annually measure five indicators that assess progress toward the state’s long-term educational goals.” The first four indicators are defined within the Act, but the fifth one is somewhat of a “wild card,” and the Hamilton Project argues that chronic absenteeism be measured. They created an interactive map that successfully confirmed that rates of chronic absenteeism “provide meaningful differentiation between schools, as required in the statute for the fifth indicator.”

This is where Kinvo by Kinvolved can come in and bring simple attendance data to life! For each student, users can go to the student profiles and export attendance data based on their selected date range. This is especially useful now as teachers are engaging in parent-teacher conferences. In the 2015-2016 school year, three out of four teachers said that attendance has improved in their classrooms, and 89% of teachers say that Kinvo by Kinvolved makes it easier to inform families about student attendance patterns. More broadly, 93% said that Kinvo made it easier to communicate with parents and guardians. Kinvolved’s work has only just begun, and we look forward to seeing how attendance continues to improve as users collect more data.

Still have questions? RSVP to our webinar! While this is the last one of November, we plan on hosting more before the end of 2016.

Know someone who needs Kinvo? Contact us for more information!

And, as always, we encourage you to share our product on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram! Reach out to us if you have a specific topic in mind for a future webinar!

Breaking Down Language Barriers

By Tips and Resources

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As you have probably heard already, Kinvo by Kinvolved is hosting a series of webinars this November. Our first webinar on how to record attendance was a success and we were excited to see an even bigger turnout this past week. If you missed it, make sure to read our blog on positive parent communication and sign up for the next one TODAY, Monday, November 14 at 3pm (RSVP here), which will discuss how to break down language barriers with a few clicks.

Webinars are only 30 minutes long, because we know our users have busy schedules. If you have a conflict, read on for some easy guidelines to follow on this topic!

At Kinvolved, we remain committed to improving student attendance rates through real-time communication between schools and families. Last week we discussed how research confirms that attendance and parent engagement go hand in hand, but this isn’t possible if parents and teachers face language barriers. As the number of immigrant students nationwide increases, and school communities continue to welcome families from diverse backgrounds, we heard and felt that this translation feature was essential to better achieve this goal. We have had this feature on our radar since last year, and are so excited that it’s finally live!

Users can now set a parent language preference by navigating to a student’s profile page, and clicking on the “Manage Contacts” button. Next, select the parent contact’s language preference from the “Primary language other than English” dropdown. There are over fifty language options to make sure we helping you enable communication for everyone. Now, if you write a message in English and send to a parent contact, they will receive the message in their preferred language. When they reply in their native language, you’ll receive their response in English!

Coming soon: functionality to mass update parent language preference. Stay tuned!

Still have questions? RSVP to one of our four webinars!

Know someone who needs Kinvo? Contact us for more information!

And, as always, we encourage you to share our product on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram!

Positive Parent Communication

By Tips and Resources

kinvo_love-parents

Kinvo by Kinvolved is hosting a series of webinars this November. We had a successful kickoff with a webinar on how to record attendance on both our web and mobile app. If you missed it, make sure to sign up for the next one on Tuesday, November 8 at 3pm (RSVP here), in which  we will be discussing positive parent communication. Webinars are only 30 minutes long, because we know our users have busy schedules. If you have a conflict, read on for some easy guidelines to follow on this topic!

Research confirms that attendance and parent engagement go hand in hand. In fact, the Southwest Educational Development Laboratory found, “When schools, families, and community groups work together to support learning, children tend to do better in school, stay in school longer, and like school more.” Despite this proven correlation, the unfortunate reality is that nearly half of American parents underestimate the harm of school absences.

These misconceptions lead to uninformed decision making and a lack of urgency. Chronic absence is not a result of indolent parents, but parent engagement is a defining factor. Researchers from Harvard Kennedy School and Goldman School of Public Policy, A. Feller and T. Rogers, explain, “parents of low-income and minority students are often viewed as a contributing cause of student failure…this ‘deficit’ view of parents hinders educational innovation, especially for K-12 students. An “asset” view of parents instead unlocks new interventions that empower parents as partners in improving student outcomes.” If parents are not informed partners in this work, they will not be able to advocate for their children’s needs. Parental involvement is a crucial piece of solving the chronic absenteeism puzzle.

This is where Kinvo by Kinvolved can come in. Now that you are an expert in recording attendance on Kinvo, here are some tips to engage parents to make sure their students are attending class. With Kinvo, teachers can instantly inform parents about absenteeism and lateness via a text message or email. If you are in a rush, use our default absent/late messages, or choose from your library of frequently used messages. With our new translation feature you can overcome previous language barriers, and translate all attendance messages in real-time!

 

Teachers can also communicate with parents about other topics relevant to student success, such as grades, behavior, and school events. It’s particularly important not to overlook the power in a simple, positive message letting a parent know that his or her child had a good day! Teachers can mark whether a message they are sending is “positive” or “needs improvement.” Administrators can then download reports to monitor the trends at their schools — they can see the number of absent, late, uncategorized, positive, and needs improvement messages sent per parent, teacher, and at the school level. The goal is to have a 5:1 ratio, which means that for every one negative message, there must be five positive messages to ensure strong relationships with families.

We know that less time sending out reminders translates to more time working with students and collaborating with colleagues, so using Kinvo, teachers and administrators are more efficient by messaging groups of contacts even an entire class’ contacts in the same amount of time it takes just to message one.

A powerful relationship can start with a simple text message. We encourage our Kinvo community users to engage families in a positive manner and track their efforts. The teacher or administrator who sends the most positive messages during the month of November will receive a Kinvo t-shirt, stickers, and pens!

Still have questions? RSVP to one of our four webinars!

Know someone who needs Kinvo? Contact us for more information!

And, as always, we encourage you to share our product on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram!

Comment below to let us know which webinar most excites you! We look forward to seeing you soon!

© 2019 Kinvolved™. All Rights Reserved, Kinvolved Inc.

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