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This is the third part of the personal content section of the Blueprint for the Complete Community Connection.

Our network can be the place where schools connect with the community.

We can give each student a password-protected web page, where teachers’ homework assignments are posted automatically, so parents can check what the assignments are and remind their children to get it done (and Mom and Dad can watch the kid upload the finished assignment, so it doesn’t ride around for a week in a backpack). We can develop resources to help students with their classes, links to the community information we develop as well as to other valuable resources provided elsewhere.

We should get the back-to-school supply lists for each class and post them automatically to the appropriate web pages, along with ads (or online order forms) from merchants. Parents can sign up to receive the supply lists by email (with links to the online order forms) as soon as they are available. Instead of crowding the aisles with other parents looking for notebooks, markers and lunch boxes, parents could order it all online from their own web page for delivery to their homes. Teachers’ and classmates’ birthdays would be posted to the web page, too, along with gift registries and/or ads.

When students register (through their web page in our network) for sports, band and other activities, their web pages will be updated automatically with equipment, instruments and music books they will need, along with ads (and direct-purchase opportunities) from sporting-goods stores and music stores. And, of course, parents get offers to buy tickets, join the booster club and schedule their hours in the concession stand.

Each team (school teams and youth sports teams) or activity (band, speech, drama, science club, whatever) would get its own site, too (with links on the youths’ home pages). There we will have practice and game schedules, rosters, individual photos, stats, team blogs, trash-talk forums, videos and photos shot by parents, etc. We’ll have some merchandising opportunities, such as customized team newspapers, player cards or an end-of-the-season DVD with parent-shot video clips from each game (supplemented by our own video, when our staff has shot their games). For state tournaments and other distant road games, we’ll provide opportunities for booking hotels, making dinner reservations and other travel arrangements.

Whether we’re talking about teacher conferences, homework, activities, schedule changes, weather closings or report cards, we can give parents options about how they want to receive information – text message, automated phone call, automatic posting to the web page, RSS feed, direct mail, email, Twitter, Facebook update.

Schools facing a budget pinch (that would be all of them), might welcome the opportunity to outsource and improve their communication functions. We need to explore whether we could collect a fee for taking on this work or whether we take the work on free and make our money by connecting the parents and students with businesses in the community at just the right times.

Continue reading the Blueprint for the Complete Community Connection with Personal content opportunities: Graduation.

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