Now we've got the ball rolling we just need to tidy up a few things before you get the whole school on Classlist!
In this section we will discuss how to:
- Finalise your School Structure.
- Set up the 'My School' page.
- Invite more Pioneers
- Start communicating on Classlist
You Will Need:
- Some really sociable people at your school who are already into social media.
- An image file of your school logo and a nice photo of your school.
1. Finalise your School Structure
In the previous stage, you may have simply set up a single class/year on Classlist. Before you get the whole school on board, you need to create a full online representation of the way your school is organised in real life, with virtual years/classes representing the ones at school. On the green Admin side go to the 'School' tab, then 'Structure' to add years and classes, or click here for more detailed help on setting up your structure.
- Years can contain multiple Classes.
- Years with no Classes count as Classes. If your school has single form entry you won't need classes: parents can join year groups directly.
2. Setting up your 'My School' page
The 'My School' section on the blue parent side of Classlist acts like a home page for your school: it contains useful contact information and lists key people in your parent community such as the PTA/Friends officers and Class Admins. To edit it you need to be on the green Admin side, on the 'Manage School' page within the 'School' tab.
- Upload your school logo and a photo to the top left section. This adds a personal touch to your site, but remember not to include children in the picture unless you have permissions - why not ask the school for a photo, as well as a jpg or png file of the school logo? Click on the small camera icon to add an image or logo, and click on the red pencil symbol to edit the school name. These small edit icons pop up when you hover the mouse over any editable section of the screen.
- Add some information below the photo, such as contact details of the school, useful websites etc. Whenever you want to edit a section on Classlist, just look for a small red pencil icon.
3. Extend your membership base.
Get your site going by inviting some of the other 'movers and shakers' in school - the kind of people who know everyone in their class and can be relied on to help out at PTA events. Ask each person on your team to invite one or two other parents and you will soon have a core Pioneer group up and running! You could also try targeting a particularly active class or approach a few key parents from each class (if you have Class Reps they are an ideal group to involve).
Tip: Why not invite everyone to a get together using Classlist's events feature a week after they sign up. It would be a great chance to see how everyone is getting on and a good excuse for a cup of tea/glass of wine!
Make sure your pioneers have completed their profiles by adding a photo and their pupils. They can do this on their Profile Page.
If you're confident parents will love Classlist you can skip this Pioneer stage and simply launch to the whole school - it's up to you!
4. Get posting and messaging on Classlist.
Classlist offers so many ways in which to communicate with other parents, from a simple private message to invitations to whole school events! Each method is designed to allow you to reach a specific audience/group/parent and is published in different ways accordingly.
Tip: When you start writing any message/post on Classlist, get used to looking below the text box for the notes which tell you who will receive it and how.
We have developed a set of Community Guidelines, which exist to make sure that everyone has an enjoyable experience. Apart from that it's entirely up to your parent community to use Classlist in whatever way they like: the more you use it the better it gets!
If you would like some ideas on engaging content take a look at this page, or visit our forum to see what other parents are doing!
- Post to the Parent Board. This is a quick and effective way to communicate to the whole school or a select group of parents. Posts can contain text, emojis and pictures.
- Post or Browse in Marketplace. This works like a virtual noticeboard. Parents can let others know they have items for sale or are interested in buying something in particular. Parents can also post recommendations or requests for services such as babysitters.
- Create a Private Event. Use Classlist to create events and invite others parents or even entire Classes. Perfect for birthday parties or playdates. Parents can also create a paid ticketed event using PayPal, should the need arise.
- Send an Announcement. Announcements get sent as an email as well as appearing on the Classlist site, making them an effective way of communicating important messages to a large group. Announcements even get sent to 'Non Member contacts' who have not yet signed up to Classlist, so no-one will miss out!
- Create a Community Event. Much like a private event, Community Events can be created by admin users. They can include every group from the school and invitations can even be sent out to the whole school. These events are 'open' so any parents who join an invited Class/Year after the original invitation was sent out will also be invited.
- Send a Private Message. Classlist can be used to send private messages to parents too. Parents can even set up multiple 'Conversations' with the same people, separated by discussion topics. Great if you want to keep PTA discussion separate from 'General Chit Chat'.
Ready to move on to Part Three - School and PTA buy in?