Support School Communities with Andy Ball and Barbi Ernst

Remind is excited to celebrate our school partners and the impact they’ve had implementing Remind on a school or district-wide level. In this series, we’ll share more about their experiences and the results they’ve achieved.


Over the past few years, Clifton Middle School Principal Andy Ball and Technology Coordinator Barbi Ernst have found that parents increasingly want to be involved in their children’s education. This is exciting for teachers, who need support outside of the classroom to help students thrive. “Our students are eleven, twelve, and thirteen years old,” Andy says. “We want to teach them responsibility, but we know they still need help.”

As a result, Clifton has taken a tech-savvy approach to communication to keep teachers, parents, and students in the loop. Everything from announcements about school events to teachers’ lessons plans are available online via email, Facebook, and Twitter.

Although Clifton has done a great job at making information available, Andy acknowledges that it hasn’t always been accessible. Not everyone uses social media regularly, and some families don’t have access to the Internet at home. To help bridge this divide, Clifton started using Celly, a platform that allowed teachers to send text messages to students and parents.

“Almost everyone in our community has a cell phone,” Andy says. “Texting is a way to make information accessible.”

Celly began phasing out text messaging support in the summer of 2016, so Barbi was tasked with finding a new solution. Based on recommendations from teachers, she visited Remind’s website and found out about the Remind School Plan. With the text messaging capabilities they were looking for as well as schoolwide support, the recently introduced School Plan looked like a good fit for Clifton’s needs.

Barbi signed up for a pilot program and began implementing a School Plan at Clifton. Thanks to new features like schoolwide rostering, setup was a snap and teachers could start using their accounts immediately. Parents began receiving regular messages from teachers and could check in with their kids about upcoming tests and school events. No longer struggling to access information, parents could become true partners in their children’s education.

“Parents like Remind,” Barbi says. “A School Plan has worked out really well for us.”

After participating in the pilot for several months, Andy purchased a Remind School Plan for the upcoming school year. Click here to read why Clifton Middle School chose a School Plan over an individual Remind account.


Learn more about School and District Plans