Daycare forms, daily summaries, field trip waivers – these are all items that you had to print and provide for parents. And once completed, childcare centers had to store and manage these paper documents.
With the addition of teacher parent communication apps, these forms are now provided to parents digitally and stored on secure cloud servers where you can access them from anywhere, anytime.
Being a truly paperless center requires planning and the right tools to still gather all necessary information about your students and communicate clearly with parents. We’ll walk you through the benefits of using a teacher parent communication app, the steps necessary to make this change and how to eliminate paper forms.
Benefits of a Teacher Parent Communication App
Becoming a paperless center and using a teacher parent communication app has many great benefits:
- Reduction in expenses for paper, printer supplies and printer maintenance
- Ease of file storage without requiring a room for documents
- Access to files from anywhere, anytime
- Better communication with parents
- Simpler licensing documentation and submissions for subsidy payments
- Less administration time inputting information from paper forms to your childcare software
- Fewer errors in data since parents input it directly through a parent portal instead of on a paper form that staff must interpret and key into the system
- Improved parent satisfaction by allowing them to complete and view forms from anywhere
Overall, removing the need for paper forms will help make your childcare more organized to meet the needs of millennial parents who are not accustomed to managing paper documents. Today’s parents want their daycare administration and communication to match that of their other services – it needs to be digital.
How to Become a Paperless Center
Becoming a paperless center will not happen in a day, week or even a month. To make such a huge change, you’ll need to allow time for planning, training and adapting existing policies and procedures. Here’s a look at some of the steps you’ll need to take.
- Implement childcare software with a parent portal and digital parent communication tools.
- Train teachers and administrators on all childcare app tools so they know how to use the software to its fullest.
- Onboard parents to familiarize themselves with all tools available in the teacher parent communication app and build confidence in using the new tools.
- Move waivers and handbooks to your childcare software. Send notifications to all parents with enrolled students to sign these waivers digitally to eliminate existing waivers you are storing.
- Automate daily summaries for parents at pickup so that they can learn about their child’s day digitally.
- Encourage teachers to send photos and log updates through the teacher parent communication app.
- Slowly review all in-house paper documents to shred and securely recycle all unnecessary paper forms once moved to the cloud.
Eliminating Daycare Forms
One of the largest sources of paper for a daycare center is enrollment forms. You print these forms for every parent who tours your facility and prepare packets with the handbook and other marketing materials.
But instead of handing a physical folder to parents, automate an email to them with all important paperwork after they take a tour. That way you aren’t printing materials that some prospective parents will never read or use.
And for parents who do decide to enroll, they’ll have the opportunity to do so directly through your parent portal where they can select a program for their child and upload supporting documentation, such as vaccination records.
This HIPAA-compliant way of storing documents will also aid in maintaining security for health records and triggering notifications for updates to such documents. That way, teachers can focus on building relationships with parents at pick up and drop off instead of recordkeeping.
See the power of iCare Software in helping you become a paperless center. Schedule a demo today where we’ll show you how easy it is to manage forms and documents digitally.