The seasons are changing. As we prepare for the winter season it is important that parents are aware of how we communicate with families during inclement weather.
Waukee Community School District uses a fully-hosted notification system called SchoolMessenger. This system allows the district to send emergency messages to parents, students and staff through voice call, SMS text, email and social media. An emergency message includes inclement weather, late starts, or other emergency situations that may arise during school hours.
The week of October 14 we will be sending a test message to parents to make sure we have the correct student contact information. When an emergency notification is sent, families will be contacted by voice call (phone), email and SMS text. Many families will receive all three types of notifications. This is to ensure all families are reached in the event of an emergency.
Student contact information is collected from parents/guardians during registration and imported into PowerSchool. If your contact information has changed, you will need to contact your building secretary to have this information updated in PowerSchool. While there is no “list” to sign up for, in order to receive an SMS text, the “optin” process must be completed on each cell phone you would like to receive SMS text messages. You only need to complete the “opt-in” process one-time per cell phone number. This means if you completed the “opt-in” process last year and your cell phone number has not changed, you do not need to complete the “optin” process again.
How to “opt-in” and receive SMS text notifications:
Parents/guardians/students/staff can subscribe by texting one of the key words: “Y”, “Yes”, “Subscribe,” “Optin” or “Opt In” to 68453. The cell phone numbers used must be in PowerSchool to receive a notification.
Parents/guardians/students/staff can unsubscribe at any time by texting the key words: “Quit”, “Remove” or “Unsubscribe” to 68453. Parents/guardians/students/staff can opt-in and opt-out as many times as necessary.
Opting in does not mean that you will immediately start receiving text messages. It simply means that you have indicated your willingness to receive messages from the SchoolMessenger service. Cell phones must be in PowerSchool to receive a notification from Waukee Community School District.
If you would like to add a new cell phone number to your contact information in PowerSchool, please contact your building secretary.
There is no fee from Waukee Community School District and/or SchoolMessenger for SMS text messages, however, recipients may be charged for receiving district messages depending on the type of monthly plan they have with their wireless provider.
When you text 68453, if you receive a “message cannot be sent” error, this means your wireless carrier has not turned on the Short Code feature on your cell phone. To have this feature turned on you will need to contact your wireless provider. Short codes are simply 5 or 6 digit numbers that are assigned to businesses who desire to send bulk SMS messages through the carrier’s networks.
SchoolMessenger frequently-asked-questions and answers can be viewed by clicking here.
Information about closings and delays can be found on the website by visiting: https://www.waukeeschools.org/students-and-parents/closings-delays/