Re-wind 25+ years....(When I was at school)

If there was a trip to the local zoo, museum, an after school club or similar I would be given a letter like this.

I would take the letter home, itwould probably get crumbled up in my bag, one of my parents would sign the letter, then I would take it back to school. Some of my classmates would return the slip even more crumpled than before, some would ask for another letter as they had lost it between school and home and some just needed reminding that they had a signed letter in their bags.

Some of my classmates would forge their parents signatures just so they could go on that trip or join a certain club. Once the teacher received them they would tick them off or send them to reception to be counted and another list would be generated. 

Fast forward 25 years, this process still happens in a-lot of schools with the only difference with these slips being inputted into a spreadsheet for data analysis or similar programs.

Now think of the following:

1. Time it takes to write the letter

2. The cost to print the letters off

3. The time it takes to give the letters out, disrupting lessons

4. The time delay between the letters being sent home and the replies being sent back

5. The teacher constantly reminding students to bring back there reply slips to say yes/no they are allowed to attend.

6. The administrator collecting all the replies then typing up the responses.

7. The emails / notifications then sent back to the students/staff member to notify who has been accepted and who has not.

85% of Adults in the UK and 95% in the US have access to a smartphone (Deloitte 2017). Being able to send these forms to parents for them to complete on a smart device or a computer can help with logistics of this process.

Now lets see if we can simpolify this process.

  1. Create a Google Form in the same format as a letter (see below). 
  2. Email the link to all parents. By sending to a parents individual email and using a digital signature, this can reduce any forgeries. 
  3. Once submitted all replies can be sorted and formatted in a spreadsheet
  4. Spreadsheet can be shared with relevant staff and SLT to be able to view responses. This allows the member of staff to double check attendees straight away.

Need more??...

In your club do you need extra information or a photocopy of some important information, maybe some ID or similiar? 

What you could do is ask the parents to take a photo on their phone and then add the upload question into the form. This would then give you a digital copy of the students ID. 

Want to limit a clubs numbers? For example, you have a total number of 25 places in one club but you run a first come first serve basis? You could use 'Choice Eliminator'.  Once 25 people have chosen the club then that option is taken out of the form automatically. I would set it up as follows:

Using Choice Eliminator, set my total number of entries for each club, in this example 25, then have a back up for once the clubs have been taken out.

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