Local schools plan text-alert system

Published: Friday, August 23, 2013 at 5:09 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, August 23, 2013 at 5:09 p.m.

Alachua County schools are implementing a text message-alert system to notify parents of emergencies such as evacuations or school closures due to hurricanes.

The district will continue to contact parents for emergencies and non-emergencies by phone and email. For now, the text message-alert system will be used only for emergencies.

“It would be good to know, especially with the incidents that are happening recently,” said Howard Bishop Middle School grandparent Barton William, referencing a Tuesday incident in Atlanta when a gunman walked into a school.

Parents and guardians can sign up for the alerts by providing a cellphone number that receives text messages on the emergency contact form, which is sent home with every school district student in the first few weeks of school.

Standard text-messaging rates and fees will apply.

Parents should still return a completed emergency contact form if they aren’t signing up for the alert system.

Emergency and non-emergency updates also will be posted to the district’s Twitter account, @AlachuaSchools.

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