So, it all started with a conversation last winter about the hard work that goes into printing a paper parent directory. Are we going to be able to pull it off again this year? Is there a willing volunteer? Does he/she have the extraordinary amount of time that a print directory takes and the know-how to make it happen on time for the new school year without a hitch? These practical questions begged the even bigger question that followed. Why is it we even do this year after year and is there a way of making it more relevant to our community? After all, isn’t it outdated the second it goes to print.

This is where I was a year ago as the Co-President of the Rye Middle School PO. RMS is one of five schools in Rye, New York. I posed these questions to the other PTO/POs who all shared similar sentiments about the paper directory and together we agreed to try something new, to “go mobile”.

If we can do it you can do it too. It’s actually a lot less difficult than you might think. First of all, the Back-To-School September deadline no longer exists. Going mobile has no deadline. So any time is a good time for you to get started. Also, going mobile does not mean you have to go paperless. It just means creating a printed paper directory is going to be a lot easier.

The first thing you need to do is identify a worker bee or two (couldn’t help myself).  Do they have to be techies? No. They just need to believe in going mobile. SchoolBee is remarkably intuitive.

The process is rather simple:
1. Educate your families about the benefits of going mobile and maybe reassure them that they can still buy a paper directory- if that is in fact the case. See my blog on Introducing SchoolBee to Your Community.
2. SchoolBee will import your directory database of families into SchoolBee (or you can add them yourselves).
3. Invite your families to update/confirm their profiles with an option to pay for membership at the same time
4. Be available to answer questions should they arise.

That’s it. It’s that simple.

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