There are two main ways to invite parents to join Classlist. As an admin user you can invite parents in Admin Mode using their email address, which has significant benefits (described below).
Admins can now also invite another using apps such as Facebook, WhatsApp, SMS and iMessenger, which you could previously only do in the blue Parent Mode.
This article looks at inviting by email in green Admin Mode, but first a little bit about upcoming data protection changes...
GDPR and using email addresses
Inviting parents using email addresses you already hold is covered by the new GDPR (data protection) legislation which is effective from May 2018. Basically, it is OK to use existing lists of email addresses to invite parents to join if the PTA (or school if they are setting up the Classlist site) have contacted parents by email within the past year for PTA or school purposes. However, the PTA/school must give parents advance notice that they may be invited, in case any parent objects. A newsletter insert, notice on the PTA or school website or a sign on a school noticeboard is sufficient to cover this requirement, so don't worry. Find the specific wording, and lots of other GDPR relevant resources here. You will need to log in using your Ambassador email to access the resources. If you are asking parents to give you their email address for the first time, so that you can invite them, you need to record their consent for you (ie the PTA) to use the address to contact them. If you need tips on collecting parent email addresses, we have plenty available.
The really amazing thing about the new legislation is that: where the school is the data controller they can lawfully engage Classlist as a new data processor and enter parent emails directly into Classlist’s invitation system where this data has been used within the last year to contact parents. Reasonable notice must be given as noted above.
Don't worry if you don't have any contact details for the parents - you can let them know that they can register directly at www.classlist.com. All parents who register for Classlist need to be approved by one of your Admin users, before they can become a Classlist user.
Inviting via email in Admin Mode
This is the most effective method of getting parents to join up to your Classlist site, since it allows you to send a personal message to the recipient/s and track the progress of your invitations.
It also means that everyone you have invited will start receiving announcements from your admins right away, even before they join.
To invite parents this way go to the 'Add and Invite' page in the green Admin Mode.
- You can enter single or multiple email addresses. If your PTA or Friends group already maintains a contact list, entering multiple email addresses enables you to invite a whole class at a time: simply copy and paste your list of email addresses in the text box and select a class from the drop down list. Make sure your addresses are separated by a comma or a space. The invitations will be sent out instantly. Single invitations work the same way.
- If you don't know the class, don't worry - it is optional. However those parents invited without a class specified will only receive 'whole school' announcements and events, rather than class or year ones, as we won't know which year they are invited to.
- Parents invited by email remain visible on your invited parents list until they sign up or unsubscribe. Invited parents receive important messages such as Announcements and Community Event invitations from your site, in the same way as a mailing list sends out information to a list of subscribers. For instance parents invited to Year 6 will receive announcements sent to Year 6 or to 'whole school'. This allows you to keep them in the loop even if they are a little slow off the mark signing up, and you can communicate with everyone you have invited from day one! Invited parents who have not yet signed up are only visible to Admin users; other parents won't be able to find them. For more information on Invited parents, please click here.
- Be ready to approve the parents. Once a parent has signed up they will need to be approved by an Admin user. You can do this from the 'Approve Parents' section; you will also get notifications about parent approval in your Admin Mode.
Tracking the Invitations
If you have invited parents via email in the Admin Mode, you will be able to track which of them have not yet signed up, edit their details (eg if you got the name or the email address wrong) and you can choose to re-send the invitation if you feel they would benefit from a reminder nudge.
Click on the pencil to view an invited parent's details. If the invitation was sent successfully, you will see the the word 'sent' under their email address. If you made a mistake in the address it will show the message 'email not recognised, check and resend'. You can then edit the address, tap 'save' and resend the invitation.
Remember that all parents whom you have invited by email, but who have not yet signed up (non-members), will receive announcements and information about community events.
NB Parents who are invited by email from the blue Parent Mode of Classlist are not recorded as invited parents in the Add and Invite page in the Admin Mode. They won't receive any announcements or other communications unless they sign up.
If you paste in a list to invite parents and they have already joined, don't worry, they won't receive another invitation. This means different class reps can paste in lists of parents and those who joined from an earlier invitation won' t get another one.
Inviting using other apps such as Whatspp, Facebook, SMS, iMessenger
If you are using the Classlist app you can use other apps on your device to send invitations to your contacts or groups in those apps. This is available on the parent and admin parts of Classlist. These invitations can not be tracked by Classlist and so the parents invited in that way will not receive your admin announcements. However it is a great way of getting word out about Classlist quickly!
We have various flyers, postcards, posters and letters you can use to invite parents to Classlist. Find them in the Resources section.