This article covers the process of creating a General Packet, sharing the URL, and preventing duplicate submissions. It explains how to select the recipient group, customize the email and text messages, and de-duplicate communications.
What is covered in this article?
- Selecting General Packet Recipient Group
- Sharing General Packet URL
- Communication Trick to prevent new submissions of already submitted packets
- Bulk Actions for sending General Packets
- What are the current limitations of this feature?
- Recommended Reading
After creating a General Packet, you need to communicate the packet URL to individual students or a group of students. There are a couple of ways you can send out the URL to families:
Selecting General Packet Recipient Group
1. Navigate to Settings > Manage General Packets
2. Locate the General Packet you wish to share and click the white envelope to the right of the packet name (pictured below)
3. Use the filters to select the specific subset of students and families that you wish to send the General Packet and click Next.
4. Once the students and families have been selected, you have the option to customize the email and text message that will be sent out to families. Click here for more information on customizing an ad hoc message.
a) By design, to save you money and family confusion, SchoolMint de-duplicates communications if the same message to going to multiple students within the same family account. When drafting communications to attach a General Packet to each student in a family, please include the communications variable $student_full_name, so that one communication (one packet) is created for each student in the family.
5. After choosing a send time, you have the option to automatically add the General Packet to the Parent Dashboard with a "Not Started" Status.
Note: If this option is unselected, the General Packet will only be added to the Parent Dashboard once the parent navigates to the URL and starts filling out the General Packet.
Sharing General Packet URL
Additionally, General Packet URLs can be communicated to individuals by including the URL in any ad hoc message. The URL can be located by navigating to Settings > Manage General Packets. The URL for the packet is located to the right of the packet's title (pictured below).
When you send a message with a General Packet URL, our message screen will see the link and offer to add the packet to the student's account. You'll see this box at the bottom of the message screen:
Leave this box checked to automatically add the General Packet to the selected students. This will add it to the Student Dashboard when families log in and will add the packet to Admissions > Manage Packets.
If the packet is created on a student level, and you are looking to send this via the Manage Re-Enrollment tab, make sure to include the variable $student_full_name in the message to ensure the message isn't de-duped for parents who have multiple students so they receive the packet for both siblings.
Communication Trick to prevent new submissions of already submitted packets
Another General Packets scenario is not allowing a student to edit their packet after submission. There is one trick to making sure a family doesn't have direct access to the packet URL to complete a duplicate packet. The video below describes the packet URL hyperlink trick to lead the family to your SchoolMint signin/welcomeback page, instead of arriving at the packet landing page.
Bulk Actions for sending General Packets
You can also utilize the Bulk Action "Email/SMS Message" to communicate to families in bulk (in mass) within the General Packet management page. For example, you can send reminders to families to finish filling out Field Trip Permission forms.
To send a General Packet URL using a Bulk Action:
1. Navigate to Manage Packets under the Admissions dropdown.
2. Use the filters to select the desired General Packet as well as the status and click Search.
3. Select the student(s) who should be receiving the message.
4. Select Email / Text Message under the Select Bulk Action dropdown.
5. This will take you to the Communications Feature with all the students you selected in the recipient's box.
6. Click here for more information on sending Communications to families.
What are the current limitations of this feature?
- Sending the URL to families via text message will utilize your ad hoc (SMS) messages. You may need to purchase additional messaging packets for this feature.
Check out the next article "Manage General Packets: Actions/Status and Editing Forms for a Family".