When you land on Remind101.com for the first time you’ll read, “A safe way for teachers to text messaging students and stay in touch with parents.” From that communication point on you’ll hear us throw around the word “safe” often. We describe ourselves as a company, and our messaging service, as safe. It’s the word that has resulted in numerous product decisions and sets us apart from similar services to ours.
The safety of our teachers is extremely important to us. You deserve the opportunity to use tools in your classroom that make a difference, without fearing the repercussions of their implementation. We’ve tried, and we hope are succeeding, in offering that comfort with our messaging service.
This blog post is here to act as 2 things.
1) A simple explanation for our teachers of the features put in place by Remind101 to keep you safe.
2) A resource to be shared and distributed to parents, administrators, district heads, and anyone else, that will gain valuable confidence in the implementation of Remind101 at your school from reading this.
What makes Remind101, in a word, “safe”?
No exchange of personal information:
Your Remind101 messages are not sent from your personal cell phone number. You don’t even need to own a cell phone to use Remind101. At the time of sign-up, we issue you an anonymous phone number used only for sending and receiving your messages. As a result, students/parents who sign up to get your messages will never gain access to your personal cell phone number.
Students/parents subscribe to receive your messages by sending a text or email from their personal device with your distinct class code. Once subscribed, they can only be identified by their name (which they provide) on your class roster list. This process ensures that a teacher never has access to a student or parent’s personal information.
One-way mass messaging:
Remind101 is a one-way mass messaging service. This means that all messages sent must go to your entire class list. No teacher has the ability to communicate directly with one student. This precaution is in place to disallow any form of bullying, favoritism, or inappropriate conversation. For the same reasons, subscribers are not able to reply to any messages sent.
Logged communication history:
A log of all messages sent are saved in your account. These messages can never be edited or deleted. This means an accurate log of your communication history will always be at your fingertips should anyone question the content you have, or have not sent.
(We are also in the process of building in the ability for you to export your message history so you can have a hard copy for your records. Stay tuned!)
Preventing inappropriate language:
A lesser known feature in place is the detection and removal of inappropriate language. When a student or parent first subscribes we ask for their name. Occasionally, kids will be kids and send back a stream of inappropriate content instead of their name. When this happens, our system detects the “bad words”, removes them, and replaces them with inoffensive symbols.
This way, when the student name appears in the teacher’s account, s(he) will be able to fix it without dealing directly with any vulgarity.
Every click, page view and text message is handled by the Remind101 application, which is hosted on a cloud platform called Heroku. Their business focuses on server management, scaling and implementing security best practices. This frees us up, allowing us to spend our time building great products. If you would like to learn more, Heroku has dedicated an entire page to explain their security provisions, all of which we automatically inherit.
As the company continues to grow and release new features or products, safety will continue to be a defining factor in our decisions. We’re on a mission to never give you a reason to second guess our tools.
If there is anything you don’t feel we’ve covered, or you have questions about these or any other features of Remind101, please reach out to us:email@example.com