You've read the research, seen the demo, and now you're ready to start texting your students. The only problem? The rest of your team isn't on board yet. Come to your next team meeting prepared to handle these frequently asked questions:
1. Does texting work?
2. Is text messaging easy to implement?
Yes! Implementing a texting program couldn’t be easier, especially on the student side: the vast majority of students are already checking their phones more than one hundred times each day. Texting platforms cater to users from different technological backgrounds, so there’s no need to spend a lot of time training staff on a new platform. With each text message capped at 160 characters, writing messages is a quick and straightforward process.
3. How much staff time does texting require?
It only takes fifteen minutes each day to read and respond to students’ texts. Effective text messaging platforms can even increase staff capacity up to ten times! Since text messaging has significantly higher read and response rates than email, staff save time by sending one text message instead of multiple calls and emails. Less time spent tracking down students means more time for staff to deal with important issues.
4. How does text messaging fit with our current communications plan?
Texting is intended to improve current communications with students, not replace them. A well-designed texting program mirrors current organizational structures and caseloads, so there’s no need to completely overhaul the system. The biggest change to your communications plan? Students actually read your text messages.
5. Is texting secure?
Yes! Text messaging platforms protect student information by ensuring FERPA compliance and following FCC guidelines. Look for platforms that log the entire message history with each student and allow students to automatically opt out of receiving text messages.
6. What other organizations are texting students?
This is a long list! Public universities, community colleges, private universities, technical schools, large ISDs, state governments, college access organizations, nonprofits, foundations, and scholarship providers are all using two-way text messaging.