As a member of the school board, you know how difficult it can be trying to get parents to attend school board meetings. It can be challenging for people to attend the meetings with the hectic lifestyle of today's society, not to mention that parents with young children will either need to tow them along or pay for a babysitter. Fortunately, there is an alternative that will help get more people to attend your school board meetings—do them over the phone. Here's what you need to know.
Telephone Conference Calls
Hold a conference call on the telephone as a way to reach more citizens in your school district. Attendees don't have to do anything but pick up the phone, listen in, and ask questions if they'd like. Your conference call can be set up to robocall each household landline in your school district immediately before your school board meeting begins. Alternatively, you can provide a call-in number for attendees to call.
Federal Communications Commission
One thing that you may be concerned about is whether or not this will violate the Federal Communications Commission's laws regarding calls placed by solicitors. Conference calls to land line phones for informational purposes do not fall under the regulations regarding the requirements of consent. However, calls placed to mobile phone numbers are regulated. The reason for the difference is because some mobile phone customers are charged per phone call and, therefore, prior consent is required.
To get as much interest in your school board meetings as possible, you'll need to inform the public as to what day and time the meetings are scheduled for. Obviously, you can send notices home with the children in your school district. However, it's also a good idea to inform non-parental citizens of your meetings as well since they are also part of the tax base that pays for the schools in your district. To inform them, place ads in the local newspaper and on the local radio station.
It's also a good idea to give them an idea of what they can expect during the call so they will know whether or not they should stay on the line. For example, if the meeting will focus on a change in the class schedules, you may not get as much interest from non-parental citizens as you would if the majority of the discussion will be regarding an increase in the local property tax to pay for a new addition to a building. Contact a business, such as telephone town halls for more information.