Parents Evening Booking Systems, Why Use Them?
Today, we’re looking at Parents Evening Booking Systems. In order to provide a great education for their pupils, schools have developed very powerful systems of discipline and control that allow them to run like clockwork. These systems, well-honed over decades of practice and experience allow schools to manage hundreds or thousands of pupils, every Monday to Friday, every year.
And Then Comes Parents Evening.
All those tools go right out the window. Gone is the regular routine that forms the backbone of daily school life, replaced instead by an event that only occurs a few times a year. What’s worse, it doesn’t always occur on the same date every year, or at the same time. Schools must negotiate with busy parent schedules and do so politely, the relationship between the parent and teacher is not the same as the teacher and the child. Yet parents evening is vitally important in maintaining relationships between the school and the parents, a necessary step in teaching the child.
So What To Do?
Some schools use paper signup sheets, time requests and other, laborious methods. These invariably require huge amounts of paper, checking against spreadsheets and just a whole lot of work. The scope for error is quite large too, and what do you do when a parent doesn’t turn up? Digging out a phone number and calling someone sounds simple enough until you realise it’s not one parent you’re contacting, it’s tens of parents, all while trying to organise everything else on the night. All of these problems are compounded by a parent having multiple children in multiple years, meaning there has to be massive coordination between the whole team.
Despite these difficulties, schools are still able to run a very tight ship. This is due to decades of institutional experience and the dedication of admin staff, working hard behind the scenes. The effort required to do such a good job is huge, however.
For a long time, this was just the way of it, but we don’t live in that time anymore. We have alternatives. Specifically, we have parents evening booking systems, like magicbooking. “But what is a parents evening booking system?” It’s a computer system that does all of the jobs that need to be done to organise parents evening. A good system will work on the principle of giving the parents options and letting them choose what works best for their schedule. The parent can log on and choose what time they want to meet their child’s teacher, on what day.
This works the same as an availability sheet, but what a system will then do is book that parent in. It will also coordinate this booking, preventing clashes or getting caught with only 30 seconds between meetings. Once they are booked, a good system will notify you at the exact time that the booking takes place, rather than having to wait for a child to bring back a filled in form. That removes the chance of a form being lost/forgotten and it saves time since you don’t need to move the information onto your own schedule. A really good system will send reminders to the parents at regular intervals, reducing the chance of people forgetting. It will put the information on who is coming directly in the hands of teachers, giving them more control.
Ultimately, a parents evening booking system shares the work-load of tasks. Most importantly, it handles the tasks that, individually, are not time-consuming or difficult, but in aggregate become massive. In doing so, an online booking system allows the hard-pressed admins to focus their efforts on delivering a great experience for parents.
Magicbooking is one such system. What sets it apart, however, is the fact that magicbooking goes further in taking the effort off admin’s shoulders. It does this through automation, doing lots of little tasks, rather than having you spend cumulative hours of your day. This includes things like sending reminders, confirmations and producing schedules. You can read more about the magicbooking parents evening module here.
If you want to see how much easier a parents evening booking system like magicbooking can make running your school, book a demo below.