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Student Communication Policy

Student Communication Policy

UPDATE

July 16, 2024

Owasso Parents & Guardians,

I wanted to provide you with an update on the district’s response to HB 3958, which requires school personnel engaging in electronic or digital communication with an individual student to include the student’s parent or guardian in the electronic or digital communication, unless the communication is on a school-approved platform and related to school and academics. 

As I shared at the end of June, the Owasso Public Schools Board of Education approved a new policy - #1.89 Student Communication - to comply with provisions set forth in HB 3958. At that time the district also named Google Workspace, which includes school-issued Gmail, as the approved digital communication platform. 

For the past several weeks, a team of district leaders has been exploring options for digital communications with an individual student to include text messaging and allow for the application to be monitored and supported by the OPS Technology team. This additional communication option is especially a need for students participating in extracurricular activities.

At last night’s Owasso Public Schools Board of Education meeting, the district presented and the board approved the use of the SportsYou messaging app. SportsYou offers oversight capabilities, data archiving and data security features that were all necessary for approval.

Extracurricular activity sponsors and coaches will begin using SportsYou for text messaging immediately, while classroom teachers will have the opportunity to utilize the app should they choose to during the 2024-25 school year.

Thank you again for your attention to this information.

Sincerely,

Dr. Margaret Coates
Superintendent
Owasso Public Schools

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June 26, 2024

Owasso Parents & Guardians,

Hope this email finds you enjoying the summer and I'd like to share some information with you regarding recent legislation. House Bill 3958, approved by Oklahoma legislators and signed by Gov. Kevin Stitt this spring, requires school personnel engaging in electronic or digital communication with an individual student to include the student’s parent or guardian in the electronic or digital communication, unless the communication is on a school-approved platform and related to school and academics. 

The law is effective July 1, 2024. To comply with provisions set forth in HB 3958, the Owasso Public Schools Board of Education approved a new policy – #1.89 Student Communication – today as part of a special meeting. The new policy is included here for your reference.  

At this time, the district’s approved digital communication platform is Google Workspace, which includes school-issued Gmail. As such, if employees communicate directly with individual students outside of Google Workspace (school-issued Gmail), parents must be included in that communication.

Please note, this new law and policy does not impact mass communication sent from the district or a school site to parents through School Messenger via email or text message. 

The district is actively exploring options for digital communications with an individual student to include text messaging and allow for the application to be monitored and supported by the OPS Technology team. Our intention is to have something in place by the start of the school year in August.

We understand that you may have questions about this new policy. Additional information will be provided prior to the start of the school year. 

Thank you for your attention to this information.

Sincerely,

Dr. Margaret Coates
Superintendent
Owasso Public Schools