Hill Top School – Using Teno for instant communication with parents
Instant alerts on classes, exams & campus activities keep busy guardians in loop
Jamshedpur-based Tata Steel executive Ashish Kumar is a relieved dad as he gets to know whatever his son Ayush, a Class X student of Hill Top School, Telco, is up to in school, that too in real time.
He is not alone. Since January this year, all guardians of the well-known ICSE school with 2,800 students are getting to know details of their wards’ academic life instantly through a smartphone app named Teno, which they have downloaded on their Andriod, iPhone or Windows handsets.
Developed by a Mumbai-based company, the app has become the school’s platform to communicate with parents on class activities, homework, important notifications and more.
Though some English-medium schools send bulk message to parents on cellphones, and Greenfield School also uses Teno, Hill Top is the first full-fledged institution right up to Plus Two to use this app for parent-school communication.
From parent-teacher meeting schedules, test marks, holiday and exam timetables, to pictures and videos of cultural programmes, everything is shared via the app.
“We started a trial run last year, trained our teachers to use the app and made parents download it on their phones,” said Puneeta B. Chouhan, Principal, Hill Top School.
“They were happy because they can directly stay in touch with the school, especially teachers. The app has smoothened the way the school communicates with parents.”
Explaining how it works, she said teachers and administrative staff send out real-time messages to parent groups segregated according to which class a child goes to. Each group has a common pin number; helping parents to form a group.
“So, parents don’t have to wait for the child to reach home and show messages on the school diary. Parents get their alerts directly on cellphones,” the principal said.
Though ‘Teno’ has a block feature that prevents two-way communication, Hill Top has let parents send messages to the school through the app’s ‘feedback’ feature.
“Once the parents as a question, the school addresses the concern through one-on-one chats. The advantage of Teno over a WatsApp group is that the former is more flexible. We can restrict membership to a particular class, their is privacy as the teacher’s number isn’t visible on the app and we can allow or block parents,” added Chouhan. Busy parents find Teno a blessing. ” If I were to rate Teno on a scale of five, I would give it a five. The best part is that a parent can communicate with teacher or principal even after school hours,” said Kumar.
Shalini Nair, mother of Nandini, a Class VI student, agreed. “We get reminders regarding assessments and projects too. The app has made us more efficient parents,” she laughed.