Ellington Public Schools is committed to providing support as we roll out the new SchoolMessenger System.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is School Messenger and why is the district using it?
SchoolMessenger is simply a state-of-the-art automated notification system which enables a school district to contact parents and or staff in a timely manner. It can easily send a voice and/or email message to thousands of land line phones, cell phones, PDAs or Blackberries in a matter of minutes. A major reason the district chose to use SchoolMessenger is to contact parents in emergency situations such as early dismissals when quick notification is critical. Many districts now use this or a similar type of notification system.
2. Will I still get calls and emails if I don’t go online and change my contact information?
Yes, you will still be contacted using the contact information you provided to your child’s school on the Annual Registration Update Form.
3. If I do go online, is this really a secure site?
Yes. SchoolMessenger is a well known and reliable company in the education industry. All session information including uploads of sensitive information are done using 256-bit SSL encryption certified by VeriSign. SchoolMessenger uses two redundant firewalls to ensure protection against both internal and external attacks. In addition, a third-party auditing firm performs extensive quarterly security reviews.
4. What is Contact Manager?
Contact Manger is an optional account within SchoolMessenger which gives parents the option of choosing how they will receive their messages. For example, you might want general messages like parent conference or report card reminders to go just to your home number/email address, but emergency messages like early closings due to inclement weather to go to all your contact phone numbers/email addresses. You may also wish to turn off the School Closing phone call as the calls will most likely go out between 5:00 – 5:30 a.m.
5. What contact information was uploaded into SchoolMessenger?
Contact information was uploaded from our student information system. We have uploaded the following information: Home phone, up to 2 cell phone numbers and two emails from the primary home, 2nd home phone, 2nd home cell, and 2nd home email (if applicable) . We have not uploaded work phone numbers since the system will not call extensions. If you have a direct line work number that you would like to be contacted on, you can add it to your Contact Manager preferences.
6. What should I do if I encounter problems setting up my Contact Manager Account?
You may wish to log out and try again. If you follow the prompts on the letter you received and it still doesn’t work, go on our district website www.ellingtonpublicschools.org/schoolmessenger. You will find a more detailed step by step guide which will help you through the process. If you still cannot successfully complete your contact preference, please leave an email explaining your problem in detail. Please include contact information and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.
7. Can I change my preference list at a later date if I want to?
Yes, if you’d like to try it first and see how it works you can always go online at a later date and change your contact preference.
8. What happens if my contact information changes?
If your phone number(s) or email changes you must notify your child’s school. If you haven’t customized your preferences, the changes will automatically be made to SchoolMessenger. If you have customized your contact preferences, you will need to go in and change your information.
9. Who should I call if I have questions?
If you have questions, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.
TO CREATE AN ACCOUNT THROUGH SCHOOLMESSENGER'S
SECURE CONTACT MANAGER WEB SITE:
- Go to the SchoolMessenger section of Ellington's district web page:
Click the "Set up my Contact Manager Account" link located at the top of the page.
- On the Sign Up, you will need to enter a valid email address, a password, your name, and Ellington's zip code (06029). You'll use your email address and the password you entered here to sign into the system.
Check the box to accept the terms of service and click "Create Account" when you are done.
- Check your email and open the message from email@example.com. It will look like the picture below. Click on the link to the confirmation page.
- This link will take you to the Account Activation Page. Your confirmation code should already be entered. You will need to enter your password and hit Submit. Example of the screen is below:
- Press "Click Here to Begin."
Step 1: Click the top option to activate by phone.
Step 2: Add Contact. Use your child's student ID, shown in the parent letter.
Each additional child's information will appear in a separate letter; you will need to add each one of your children as contacts.
Step 3: Call 877-536-8216 and enter the activation code provided on the webpage. You must call into the system from one of the phone numbers associated with your child's student record. You will be able to see the last three digits of the numbers on this screen for verification purposes.
- When you have finished, your account will be displayed. Click on the "Contacts" tab
Click "Edit" next to the contact names.
Here you can choose what type of messages you want to recieve to each phone number and email address we have on file. You can also add additional phone numbers and email addresses.
Please note, any changes you make to your contact preference profile are for SchoolMessenger notifications ONLY and will not affect your emergency contact information at your child's school. If you wish to make changes to your child's recorded emergency contact list, you must contact your school directly.
Click "Save" when you are finished.