School District’s New Parent & Family Portal Launches to Improve Communication Between Schools, Families
PHILADELPHIA — In an effort to better engage parents through technology and to help school staff members and families more effectively communicate, the School District of Philadelphia launched its updated Parent & Family Portal. The online platform gives parents and guardians improved access to student schedules, attendance, assignments, grades, immunizations and contact information.
“We know that parent and family engagement can be an important part of student success,” said Dr. William R. Hite, Superintendent. “The new Parent & Family Portal allows our families to become even more actively involved in their students’ education by accessing important information like attendance, quiz, test and homework marks in real time.”
The Parent & Family Portal, which only allows people indicated as student guardians to set up an account, also allows guardians and teachers to directly communicate through email and messaging. In the past, notifications to parents could only be sent from the school’s main office.
“Guardians also now have the ability to customize the ways they receive communication from schools on their mobile phones, tablets and laptops, deciding when they want to receive an email versus a text message, for example,” said Hite. “The overall goal is to make the system more accessible and convenient for busy parents and families.”
The portal can be viewed in English, Spanish, and Mandarin and Simplified Chinese, with other languages to be added in the near future. It is part of the District’s new Student Information System, Infinite Campus, which launched in February 2017, and has transformed the way teachers, principals, secretaries, and nurses enter data and communicate with families.
“As a parent I like to be kept up to date with my daughter’s progress at school. The new Parent & Family Portal does just that,” said Rasheeda Hancock, parent of a student at Russell Conwell Middle School. “It is extremely easy to navigate and I can see if my daughter may need additional support in a subject before final grades are submitted.”
Letters were mailed home with all students earlier this school year so that parents could confirm contact information and other data already in the system. While the portal will only showcase current student data, students’ historical data will be viewable for guardians via SchoolNet.
Parents and guardians can get information about the new Parent & Family Portal by navigating their web browser to https://philasd.org/pfportal.