Announcements are the main communications link for your MySchool users. Post the message to the portal and it will be available immediately for users logging into their MySchool inbox. Equally, you can send a copy to their primary email address. With a new version released in 2022, schools can customise layouts, create digests, configure categories and design templates. Let's take a look at how to send announcements and manage your inbox.
Who can access sending announcements?
Schools allow staff users to send announcements, whereas students/guardians will be able to receive only. Staff users may have the ability to create announcements, manage announcements, and create templates. Organise a call with your CSM to fully understand these settings and apply them to your schools' user groups. Have a look at the user group settings to make sure each of your groups has the correct level of access.
Users create announcements, either within their announcement module page located in Administer/Announcements or via the quick action toolbar. Let's take a look at the options available.
This field is mandatory, even for draft and template designs. it will appear in the subject line for your users and be used in the digest.
When sending a mail, the user can choose to add a category from a centrally controlled setlist. new categories are controlled by school administrators in the configuration panel.
Choose your recipients here using the MySchool people picker. it is a really easy way to choose guardians, students, or other staff members in a few simple clicks. Once you have selected your target audience, click on the statistics number for a detailed analysis of users with emails, users without emails and users that have opted out of receiving this type of message. Users can filter this further using the coverage statistic group. Select users with no mail and their names will be listed. Try to find a way to rectify this before sending important announcements. Default users will not be able to override opt-out decisions, without having permission to ignore this and send an essential mail.
You can upload attachments to send with your announcements. These are restricted to 50Mb. For larger files, you share on an online link to cloud storage or use the My Files option within your MySchool instance.
Body of the announcement
You can now create the body of the announcement using the rich text editor features. Now, if activated, users can create their templates. Click on save template and a slider will appear, asking for the template name (mandatory), and will ask about the visibility - Private, needs to have an owner and can only be used by that user. Public will make the template available for all users from the load template option.
Please note that there is a limit of 1mb when adding an image to the body of the announcement. You can resize or reduce dpi to make sure your images will be accepted.
Determine the send settings
Now users can configure the send settings from the right-hand side panel. Let's break down the options further;
Publish on the portal and send as an email are the two options for where you would like the announcement to be sent. You can now send an email without posting to the user's portal. Please note that the communications log in the user profile will only record emails sent, not announcements posted to the portal.
Copy to my email will send the email to the sender's primary email address even if they are not included in the target audience.
Is sticky will pin the message to the top of the user's inbox. This can be unpinned by the sender only.
Ignore e-mail opt-out is designed to send a non-essential message which ignores user subscriptions to opt-out. This should only be used for important messages. The stats panel will show the number of recipients that have opted out of receiving non-essential messages before sending.
Send immediately will override the recipient's digest settings and send the mail as usual.
You can create announcements and defer the send date and time. So you can plan and create your monthly newsletter in advance. Use the date picker and select the date within the calendar. Enter a time in 24hr format.
Send by orders
Depending on the user security permissions, you can send an announcement from your email address, on behalf of another user, or use the school's email address. This email address will be set on the school configuration page.
Once everything is set, send the communication
At the bottom of the announcement create page, you can choose to preview the email before sending, or save as a draft. If you save it as a draft then you can recover this on the announcement list page, by filtering by status. if you have entered a date in the schedule field then the action button will change to schedule instead of send.
On your user dashboard, all users will have access to their inbox. This is for receiving announcements, Check out this article explaining further inbox management. Sent messages, Drafts, and scheduled emails will be listed here. If you have elevated security access you will also be able to view other users' announcements as well.
You can use the check box to the left to delete ONLY non-published announcements.
You can filter this view by category, status, and publish dates. Equally, on this page, you can edit your signature which will be applied to all your created announcements.
At the bottom of the announcement management page, you can find the Edit Signature button.
A slide-over will open where you can edit with a rich text box and save when you're ready.
Click on an announcement in this view to look at further details.
Delivery options confirm how the announcement was sent originally, users can determine if an announcement should be made 'unsticky' or whether it can be removed from the portal entirely.
Users can also duplicate announcements and edit them before resending them to a new audience. Equally, you can check on the status of the mail per recipient. This will help resolve issues of users not receiving your communications. Check out this article for some guidance on how to get your community connected.
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