by luke eggleston
Sun staff writer
Several schools in the Syracuse Diocese recently adopted a phone system that they believe will streamline communication with students’ families.
As of last week, 11 diocesan schools had adopted SchoolReach, a program that facilitates communication between administrators and students’ families.
The schools that have adopted the program so far are Holy Cross in Dewitt, Bishop Grimes Junior/Senior High School and St. Daniel-St. Matthew Academy in East Syracuse, Our Lady of Sorrows-Seton Campus and St. Joseph School in Endicott, Immaculate Conception School in Fayetteville, Trinity Catholic School in Oswego, the Bishop’s Academy at St. Charles and Blessed Sacrament School in Syracuse and Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Peter School in Utica.
Deacon Joseph Celentano, the principal at St. Daniel-St. Matthew, believes that the new system will dramatically improve the administration’s ability to talk to parents.
“It’s another way to effectively communicate with parents either by phone or email,” he said.
Previously, when a school was presented with an emergency, administrators’ offices needed to notify families on an individual basis. SchoolReach will enable administrators to notify parents or groups of parents simultaneously.
In addition, Deacon Celentano stressed that each communication is recorded in a database, enabling administrators to check as to whether or not parents have been notified of an event.
Deacon Celentano illustrated an instance in which SchoolReach, a program provided by GroupCast Messaging Systems, will be useful. Located in Lyncourt, St. Daniel-St. Matthew has several students who rely on the East Syracuse-Minoa School District’s buses. If a snow emergency forces ES-M to cancel its busing services, an administrator can notify that specific group of parents.