Can a free school app be good enough to improve parental engagement?

There's an old saying. "Anything free must be rubbish." Is this true of all edtech built to improve parental engagement?

Actually, I've no idea if that's an old saying! But what about the saying "you get what you pay for"? We've all heard that. Well, when we rebuilt the Schudio School App, our aim was to dispel the argument that anything good has to cost lots of money and we've been doing that for years.

Our website packages have always been towards the more affordable end of the spectrum and are packed with features. Our School Website Compliance Guide is completely free and trusted by over 2500 schools. Also, our free school app has been helping schools improve parental engagement since 2014.

The History of the Schudio School App

The app was first launched back in 2014. It was the very first school app that was hooked directly into a website platform. So, right from the outset, the Schudio School App was a trendsetter.

The goal was simple.

Provide the means for parents to quickly and easily access the most important information from anywhere, on any device.

Since then, we've updated the app regularly, adding features and providing a range of updates.

But, this time around it's different.

The app has had a complete rebuild and is now one of the most attractive school engagement apps. It's also incredibly easy for both staff and parents to use.

Why is the Schudio School App Free?

When we first built the app, we were just getting started providing websites for schools. We were a small company, looking for exciting ways to stand out from the crowd and free app was appealing to people.

But, there was a bigger reason and it stems from a conversation I had with a number of schools back in 2014.

Schools were crying out for an app that would help them improve parental engagement. They wanted something simple, didn't take much time and ideally, one which was linked to the website. So, if you added a news article to your website, it would display on your app as well.

As soon as we launched the app, our school website clients benefited from a series reduction in website/app workload.

But what about those schools that were happy with their current school website provider?

It was simple: we didn't think schools should have to pay to do that job twice. 

No way should a member of staff in school have to load a news article onto the website, then on to an app if they want to send a notification. But, if there's no option you most definitely should not have to pay for the privilege.

How can a free school app help improve parental engagement?

And here's the rub.

Is the Schudio School App genuinely good enough to help improve parental engagement?

A recent free school app user sent us a little feedback on how we have helped improve parental engagement in their school:

"It looks great. I am planning to stop sending our newsletter and get all the parents to use the app. It will save a lot of time. We can send more up to date information and save cost on services like SMS. It's a great service."
Nish Kari - Primary School

We believe that  we can help your school reach your school community better by providing the following benefits to parents:

  • Fast, reliable easy access to key information
  • Receive notifications with vital information immediately
  • Call and email school from within the app
  • Immediate access to term dates (often viewed as many as 4 times as often as any other page on a school website)
  • Be assured school is spending limited budgets wisely

And if you're in school, managing outgoing communications, here are the benefits to school:

  • Fast, easy set-up and simple to use dashboard, which works on any device
  • Broadcast push notifications with vital information (newsletters, school closures, KS alerts, announcements)
  • Save money on printed letters and SMS messages
  • Reinforce your parental engagement strategy with a solution that is effective and free
  • If you're a Schudio School Website client, stop duplicating work immediately

How to get started with the free Schudio School App

Firstly, if you're a Schudio School Website client, drop us a line at hi@schudio.com - there is nothing for you to action. Your account is live and it's simply a case of making sure you're using it. We'll send you the information you need to get started.

If you're not a website client you can sign up for your free school app here.

Here's what will happen when you do.

We'll verify that you're a real school and then send you your login information. You'll then be taken through a simple online wizard that will simply take you through the steps to get your app live.

You can get in touch for support or help at any time. We'll be thrilled to help.

You'll also be enrolled in the SchudioTV School App Course which will take you through everything you need to know to make your new school app a success in school.

Once you're up and running, you'll have a fantastic, free tool that will help delight your school community. After all, everything we do is about going way beyond mere parental engagement.

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