Northern Lights Public Schools is pleased to introduce School Messenger - a communication tool that is available to all schools and teachers throughout the division to enhance communication between our schools, parents and students.
School Messenger allows schools, and teachers, to send messages to parents and/or students using the contact information they provided to the school when they registered. This includes automated attendance notifications when students aren't at school and their absence hasn't already been reported by a parent or guardian. It can also include general messages from your child's teacher, school or division such as newsletters and information on upcoming events. The messages can be sent as voice messages to your phone(s), as email messages or as text messages.
You can also see all of the messages sent to you for all of your children, communicate with teachers in “groups,” and set your contact preferences for different types of messages through the School Messenger App. The app can be downloaded on Apple or Android phones (sorry, no Blackberry version), or it can be accessed through a web browser on a desktop computer.
Please note that you can create a School Messenger account from either your desktop/laptop computer or your phone, but some parents have encountered issues when signing up on their phones, so we recommend doing your initial set up on a computer.
School Messenger Parent App - Desktop Computer
Go to: go.schoolmessenger.com
Click on Sign Up on the menu in the upper right-hand corner of the login page.
Make sure the location is set to United States. If you choose Canada, it will let you set up an account and participate in groups, but you will not see the other messages that have been sent to you.
Enter your address and create a password. Your email address MUST be the same email address that you provided to your child(ren)’s school in order to connect you with the messages that have been sent to you. Your password must contain at least one uppercase character, at least one lowercase character, and at least one digit. It must be no fewer than six characters in length.
Click Sign Up.
An email will be sent to the email address you provided. Click on the link in the email and follow the directions.
When you log in, you will be prompted to identify yourself as a parent, student or teacher. Choose parent.
To verify that everything has gone smoothly, click on Contacts in the upper right hand corner.
If your account has connected correctly to the student information we have on file, you will see your child(ren) listed in this section, along with the name of the school they attend. If you do not see this, please contact your school or the division’s Communications Officer (780-826-3145) for assistance.
School Messenger Parent App - Mobile Device
To download the app, go to the App Store or Google Play and look for the SchooL Messenger app that looks like this:
If you have already created a log in using a desktop computer, you will be able to log in right away.
If you do not have a log in, you will need to sign up:
Enter your nlsd.ab.ca email address and a create a password. Your password must contain at least one uppercase character, at least one lowercase character, and at least one digit. It must be no fewer than six characters in length.
Make sure the location is set to United States. If you set the location to Canada you will be able to participate in groups, but you will not see all of the other messages that have been sent to you.
When asked for your role, select Parent.
Check your email account for a verification message and follow the instructions.
To make sure everything is working properly, click on the three lines in the top left hand corner of the app. The options listed should include Messages, Contacts, Groups, Preferences and Settings. If you do not see the Contacts and Preferences options, your account has not connected properly with our student information. Please contact your school or the division’s Communications Officer (780-826-3145) for assistance.
Using the School Messenger App
The School Messenger App's Messages section displays all messages (voice, email or text) sent to you from your school or division during the last 30 days, as well as the messages and conversations that have taken place in the groups you have joined. They are sorted in reverse chronological order.
Messages sent by the school or district will include the name of the message in bolded type (ie September Parent Bulletin), the name of the sender and the division or school, the message type (General, Emergency, Survey), the date the message was sent, yellow initial icons indicating whom the message was sent to or whom the message is about - multiple circles indicate the same message has been sent for multiple students.
App-only messages (from groups) will include a red initial icon of the group sender, the name of the sender, the name of the contact the message has been sent to (followed by the number of other group members who have received the same message), and the name of the message.
You can filter the messages you see on the App on your phone by clicking on the three lines in the upper right hand corner that look like an inverted triangle. You can set it to show All Messages, Unread Messages, Attendance, Conversation (Groups), General, Non-School Hours Emergenecy aor School Hours Emergency.
To filter messages when viewing on your computer, click on the inverted triangle on the Messages screen.
The contacts section will list all of your children, the schools they are enrolled in and their grade level.
The groups section will show all of the groups that you have joined. You are not automatically part of a group that your teacher has created. If your teacher has created a group, they need to provide you with a group code that you can enter to join the group.
Once you have entered the group code, your child’s teacher will be able to communicate with you individually or as part of a group of parents.
You will be able to see any messages sent to the group, or yourself, in the messages section. Depending on how the teacher has set up the message, you may be able to see the message, as well as any comments made by other group members.
Whether or not you are able to respond to a message, or have your comments seen by other group member depends on the options the teacher has selected. The teacher can set up the message so that 1) comments can be entered and read by everyone, 2) comments can be entered by group members but only seen by the teacher, or 3) no comments are allowed.
If the word PUBLIC appears in the bottom right-hand corner of the message, that means everyone the message has been sent to will be able to see any comments that you enter.
If you want to respond to a message, type your message in the comments box and hit SEND.
To leave a group, simply click on LEAVE GROUP.
The preferences section allows you to indicate how you want to be contacted. Please note, you will have to have at least one contact method turned on for emergencies and attendance notifications.
At the top of the screen will be all of the contact phones numbers and email addresses you have provided to the school. If you click on a number you can indicate when you want the school to call or text you. The options are School Hours Emergency, Attendance, General, Survey, and Non-School Hours Emergency. If the Call Me or Send Me a Text boxes are blue that means they are activated. To indicate you don't want to receive a call or text for a particular type of message, click on it until the box turns white.
Another way to set your preferences is to scroll to the bottom of the preferences screen where you will see all of the message types listed: School Hours Emergency, Attendance, General, Survey, Non-School Hours Emergency. Clicking in any of those boxes will show you the preferences you have for being contacted in any of those scenarios. Again, to deactivate a contact method, click on the phone number or email address until the box turns white.
To allow the app to send push notifications to your phone, go to the Settings section and click on the Push Notifications box. You will be able to select what types of messages you want to see push notifications for. The ones that are active will be green and the ones that are not will be grey.