Guest blog by Joseph Oriente.
We’re pleased to introduce Joseph Oriente as our guest blogger today. Joseph Oriente is the President and Founder of Capturepoint, creator of CommunityPass software. Joe established Capturepoint in 1999 and launched CommunityPass in 2003, which was initially created to provide online registration and payment for a local town sports council that was overwhelmed with an increasing number of paper registrations.
Since then Joe has been responsible for expanding CommunityPass nationally to become one of America’s most well respected and complete online management solutions with registration, membership and facilities software serving the recreation and school markets.
You and your afterschool program staff are tasked with watching over a group of kids, coming up with programs to keep them engaged, while also ensuring that parents feel secure. It can be a lot to juggle.
Managers of afterschool programs need resources to be fully prepared, including dependable software to ensure that each aspect of the program is well organized and held accountable.
It can be daunting to make the switch to an afterschool program management software, especially if your team has historically been managing it manually. Take a look at these best practices to get a better look at what you should be prioritizing:
- Intuitive online registration.
- Flexible scheduling.
- Digital attendance.
Hopefully, this guide will be able to ease some of your concerns and show you that afterschool program management can go off without a hitch! Let’s get started.
1. Intuitive online registration
Many times, the parents that put their children in afterschool programs are also too busy to come by the school and sign up in your office. However, you can easily set up online registration, making parents’ lives so much easier as well as increasing participation in your programs!
With the right afterschool program management software, you can easily set up your online registration. Additionally, the school can put a button on your school website to take parents directly to the online registration. Look for these specific features when browsing your options:
- 24/7 registration. Don’t miss out on parents who are busy during work hours.
- Waitlist management. Prevent overbooking with a built-in waitlist manager.
- Integrated online program catalogue for parents to browse through.
- PCI compliant payment processor. Accept multiple forms of payment and be confident it’s secure!
2. Flexible scheduling
When managing an afterschool program, you should always consider how you can make the parents’ lives easier.
Make sure your program management software allows for flexible scheduling. Things always seem to come up and it’s likely that the families you are helping have multiple children in programs all over town. Here are some common problems that you may run into while managing your afterschool programs:
- A parent can’t pick up their child from school because of unforeseen circumstances and they want the child to instead attend one of your afterschool programs as a drop-in student.
- Kids don’t show up to a program because they are sick so they cancel their registration.
- A parent only works part-time, so they need flexible scheduling in order to correspond with their routine.
Making sure your afterschool program management software has flexible enrollment and scheduling is key when you’re preparing for events like this. Don’t let your team get caught off guard when a parent wants to add a child for a drop-in. Let them manage this through your online registration site.
3. Digital attendance
Lastly, capable school software makes student safety a top priority. When you manage a group of youth, you know that you’re held accountable for each of their experiences. If a child doesn’t show up for the program, parents and others are looking to you for guidance.
An effective check-in and check-out feature is crucial to the success of your afterschool program. Additionally, there are other digital solutions you can look into to ensure each child is where they’re supposed to be. Look for these functionalities in your afterschool program management software:
- Digitally check in and check out students with an app. Don’t allow for any human error when manually checking kids in and out for attendance. You can view a student’s attendance history over time and note any trends. Additionally, you and your staff have quick and easy access to emergency contacts and health alerts.
- Monitor “pick-up” time with a database of authorized signatures and photos. This way, you know exactly who is allowed to pick up a child.
Safety with minors can be tricky to navigate, but with the right management tools, you can keep better track of where each student is with accessible real-time data!
Using school program management software can really help families and students by ensuring children’s safety, giving flexible scheduling options, and providing parents with a convenient way to register for programs. Feel confident in your afterschool program with the right management software.
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