Open School Messenger
Download our School Messenger Parent Guide
Download our School Messenger Parent Guide
Northern Lights Public Schools is pleased to offer School Messenger - a communication tool available to all schools and teachers throughout the division to enhance communication between our schools, parents and students.
School Messenger allows schools, and teachers, to send messages to parents and/or students using the contact information they provided to the school when they registered. This includes:
The School Messenger app, available for Apple and Android devices and accessible through a web browser on a desktop computer, allows parents to set contact preferences, view all of the messages that have been sent to them, and instant message with teachers.
Please note, to receive text messages, parents need to consent by texting Y to 978-338. More details on opting into text messages are available below.
We've been getting a lot of questions about School Messenger from parents and teachers. Here are answers to some of the most popular questions.
Q: I texted my teacher, but they didn't reply. What's going on?
A: School Messenger does not allow for text message responses. Your teacher or school does not receive any messages sent to the 978-338 short code. If you receive a text message and wish to follow up, please contact your school or teacher directly with a phone call or email.
Q: I downloaded the app, but I can't send a message to my child's teacher. I really need to send them a message.
A: Once you have downloaded and registered for the app, you are automatically connected to your child's teacher in the group (Conversation) section of the app. However, parents and students are unable to initiate messages with their teachers. Once your teacher has sent you a message, you will be able to reply and communicate with them through the app. If they have not sent you a message, they may not be using the app to communicate with parents or students. Please ask the teacher if they are using this communication method and ask that they send you a message so you can reply and send them messages when you need to.
Q: I am receiving messages at multiple phone numbers and email addresses. How can I change where messages are sent to me?
A: You can change your message preferences in the School Messenger app in the Preferences section. You are required to provide one contact method for emergencies and one for attendance notifications. You can set your preferences based on the phone number or email address, or you can set it for difference types of messages. For instance, if you select attendance notifications, you can set it to text you only, or to call, text and email you. But you can set General Messages to be email only or email and text or any combination you want. You can also indicate which email or phone number you want the messages sent to.
Q: How do I change the number or email address that messages are being sent to?
A: If you need to update your email address or phone number, you will need to contact the administrative assistants at your child's school. They can update your information in our database. It may take several hours for the update to sync with School Messenger.
Please note, that if you make a change to your cellphone number and want to receive text messages, you will need to opt-in by texting Y to 978-338.
Recipients not wishing to receive text messages to a particular number can simply do one of the following:
If it was from 978-338, that was the Opt-In Invitation message sent by School Messenger. To continue receiving informational text messages from the school(s), reply with "Y". If you do not reply, you won't receive any future texts from our schools.
Ensure that the school division has your correct device number in the database, and that it is located in the SMS phone field. It may take 24 hours for a number to become acttive after being changed or added to the division's system.
Send a text with "Y" from that device to the division short code (978-338). You should receive an opt-in confirmation message from the service.
If you want to receive texts on multiple devices, each device number must complete the Opt-In process.
Confirm the division has actually attempted to send a School Messenger SMS text message.
After you text one of the key words to the short code the system will ALWAYS respond back with one of three messages:
Any other response - or no response: indicates teh recipient should contact their wireless device provicder to have SMS messaging/premium content enabled.
If you receive what appears to be an error message, similar to one of the following, it most likely means that short code text messaging is not enabled on your wireless subscription plan:
These replies DO NOT indicate that hte wireless provider can't receive messages from SchoolMessenger. Rather, they are an indication that the specific mobile device does not have short code SMS texting enabled for that number (this is sometimes disabled by defailt on company provided cell phones). To address this, contact your wireless provider.
SchoolMessenger does not charge recipients for the text messages that they receive or send to the short code; however, wireless providers may charge for individual text messages, depending on the plan associated with the wireless device. Please consult your carrier if you are uncertain.
1. Go to: go.schoolmessenger.ca
2. Click on Sign Up on the menu in the upper right-hand corner of the login page.
3. Make sure the location is set to Canada.
4. Enter your address and create a password. Your email address MUST be the same email address that you provided to your child(ren)’s school in order to connect you with the messages that have been sent to you. Your password must contain at least one uppercase character, at least one lowercase character, and at least one digit. It must be no fewer than six characters in length.
5. Click Sign Up.
6. An email will be sent to the email address you provided. Click on the link in the email and follow the directions.
7. When you log in, you will be prompted to identify yourself as a parent, student or teacher. Choose parent.
8. To verify that everything has gone smoothly, click on Contacts in the upper right hand corner (see image above).
If your account has connected correctly to the student information we have on file, you will see your child(ren) listed in this section, along with the name of the school they attend. If you do not see this, please contact your school or the division’s Communications Officer (780-826-3145) for assistance.
To download the app, go to the App Store or Google Play and look for the SchooL Messenger app that looks like this:
If you have already created a log in using a desktop computer, you will be able to log in right away.
If you do not have a log in, you will need to sign up:
Enter your email address and a create a password. Your email address MUST be the same email address that you provided to your child(ren)’s school in order to connect you with the messages that have been sent to you. Your password must contain at least one uppercase character, at least one lowercase character, and at least one digit. It must be no fewer than six characters in length.
Make sure the location is set to Canada.
When asked for your role, select Parent.
Check your email account for a verification message and follow the instructions.
To make sure everything is working properly, click on the three lines in the top left hand corner of the app. The options listed should include Messages, Contacts, Groups, Preferences and Settings. If you do not see the Contacts and Preferences options, your account has not connected properly with our student information. Please contact your school or the division’s Communications Officer (780-826-3145) for assistance.
The School Messenger App's Messages section displays all messages (voice, email or text) sent to you from your school or division during the last 30 days, as well as the messages and conversations that have taken place in the any groups you belong to. They are sorted in reverse chronological order.
Messages sent by the school or district will include the name of the message in bolded type (ie September Parent Bulletin), the name of the sender and the division or school, the message type (General, Emergency, Survey), the date the message was sent, yellow initial icons indicating whom the message was sent to or whom the message is about - multiple circles indicate the same message has been sent for multiple students.
App-only messages (from groups) will include a red initial icon of the group sender, the name of the sender, the name of the contact the message has been sent to (followed by the number of other group members who have received the same message), and the name of the message.
You can filter the messages you see on the App on your phone by clicking on the three lines in the upper right hand corner that look like an inverted triangle. You can set it to show All Messages, Unread Messages, Attendance, Conversation (Groups), General, Non-School Hours Emergency, School Hours Emergency or Parent Contact.
To filter messages when viewing on your computer, click on the inverted triangle on the Messages screen.
The contacts section will list all of your children, the schools they are enrolled in and their grade level.
The groups section will show all of the groups that you are part up. The School Messenger app has recently been updated so that you are automatically part of a group that includes all of the parents of children in your child's class or classes. Some teachers may choose not to instant message parents through the App. Please check with your child's teacher to find out if they are participating.
Schools/teachers may also create additional groups (ie. for extra-curricular clubs or athletics) and may give you a group code to join those groups.
You will be able to see any messages sent to the group, or yourself, in the messages section. Depending on how the teacher has set up the message, you may be able to see the message, as well as any comments made by other group members.
Whether or not you are able to respond to a message, or have your comments seen by other group member depends on the options the teacher has selected. The teacher can set up the message so that 1) comments can be entered and read by everyone, 2) comments can be entered by group members but only seen by the teacher, or 3) no comments are allowed.
If the word PUBLIC appears in the bottom right-hand corner of the message, that means everyone the message has been sent to will be able to see any comments that you enter.
If you want to respond to a message, type your message in the comments box and hit SEND.
To leave a group, simply click on LEAVE GROUP.
The preferences section allows you to indicate how you want to be contacted. Please note, you will have to have at least one contact method turned on for emergencies and attendance notifications.
At the top of the screen will be all of the contact phones numbers and email addresses you have provided to the school. If you click on a number you can indicate when you want the school to call or text you. If the Call Me or Send Me a Text boxes are blue that means they are activated. To indicate you don't want to receive a call or text for a particular type of message, click on it until the box turns white.
Another way to set your preferences is to scroll to the bottom of the preferences screen where you will see all of the message types listed. Clicking in any of those boxes will show you the preferences you have for being contacted in any of those scenarios. Again, to deactivate a contact method, click on the phone number or email address until the box turns white.
In the Settings section, you will find four options:
Profile - Shows your first and last names as well as your role (Guardian, Student or Teacher)
Push Notifications - To allow the app to send push notifications to your phone, click on the Push Notifications box. You will be able to select what types of messages you want to see push notifications for. The ones that are active will be green and the ones that are not will be grey.
Logout - Click this to log out of the app
School Messenger is continually upgrading its products and introducing new features. Northern Lights Public Schools will inform parents when there are important upgrades made to the app or new features are added. Stay tuned!