Flowers Elementary School in Montgomery, AL needed help streamlining their daily dismissal process. Between the long, 35+ minute dismissal time, chaos looking for students when it was time for them to leave, and difficulty with inter school communication, Principal Tori Infinger knew a change was necessary to improve their process.
The Daily Dismissal and Emergency Preparedness Story of Flowers Elementary
Flowers Elementary has a small car pick-up area. Due to the amount of time it was taking for daily dismissal, upward of about 35-40 minutes for a relatively small school, there was serious traffic congestion.
Previous Dismissal Process
To dismiss students, the staff would put their school intercom on all-call and place a radio next to it, so that when a dismissal announcement was made, it would echo throughout the school. It worked, but was not very effective. If a student didn’t hear their name, which was common, the dismissal staff had to search for that student, and the parent was left holding up the car line.
Previous Safety Drill Process
For safety drills (including Emergency Reunification) they were “old school,” using paper, pencil and a student roster. For reunification, they would hold up a green folder and red folder and use walkie talkies for both instruction and communication. This meant being responsible for grabbing these items before leaving the classrooms and hoping all students were paying attention.
In addition to Pikmykid having a product that works for dismissal, emergency, AND safety needs, it also helps with communication and connecting the school to the parents and community. The Pikmykid platform provides Principal Infinger with ease and peace of mind, knowing everyone is on the same page. Even if she isn’t there, she can still know exactly what is happening. She also appreciated Pikmykid’s purpose as a company and the “why” of it being started.
Efficient Daily Dismissal & Increased Instructional Time
So what has changed? Now, instructional time can continue at the end of the day uninterrupted. There are no more intercom announcements, and students’ names simply pop up on the screen when it is time for them to leave. There are no kids running around the hallways or outside, and there is less chaos. Only two staff members are needed outside with iPads.
The students now know the dismissal process so well and how to use the tool, that dismissal still runs smoothly even if a substitute teacher is there. Pikmykid makes it easy to monitor when the students leave, and provides peace of mind that the student got in the (correct) car. The car line flows smoother and more quickly, and Flowers has reached their goal dismissal time of 20 min, almost half of what it was prior to Pikmykid.
Streamlined Emergency Alert System and Reunification Drills
Thankfully, Flowers has not yet had to utilize the Emergency Alert System for anything other than drills.
With the click of one button, everyone can be notified at once there is an emergency, including parents and first responders if needed. The teachers need nothing more than a phone or ipad to check in each student in order to know who is missing or accounted for. “Getting started is the hardest part, but once you push through that and make it fit for your school, it is very beneficial.” – Principal Tori Infinger
The Final Verdict
The school staff now understands and loves using Pikmykid. The use of it is so routine and smooth. Everyone is in communication and realizes how much better dismissal is with it.
Principal Infinger added, “Pikmykid, the software itself is amazing, but I feel the support that has been provided, customer service wise, has really allowed us to be successful.” She went on to say that the customer success team is there whenever they have questions or challenges, and they provide immediate response even with zoom calls if needed. Pikmykid’s willingness to help and support them, even physically at the school, has made it so successful.
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