As you can see, School Circle almost acts as a social network for your school, allowing parents and businesses to easily connect and share information. I really like that it even has an e-notice board so that members can share things they need or they're trying to get rid of. Especially in larger school districts, this resource can go a long ways towards building a stronger, more connected community. You can also check out their examples page for me reasons to try School Circle.
When you first arrive at School Circle, you'll probably notice that your school is not on their list, being a new service and all. However, if you just send them an email, they will get you added to the list and then you can get rolling.
Once your school is added and you've created a free account, you can get started making connections between parents, the school, and local businesses. When you first login you'll see your dashboard where you can connect with local businesses, post items to the noticeboard, share documents with members of the PTA and much more.
At the top of the dashboard you'll find links to all the necessary pages you'll need, but really these are just anchor links to the different sections on the main page, which I really like. By keeping all the important information central and on the same page, it makes for incredibly easy navigation, and they do so without making the page feel cluttered or overwhelming as well.
From the dashboard you can also add local businesses that your school has ties to, post to the noticeboard, or even setup an online fundraising auction
Going a little deeper, if you click on any of the businesses that are connected to your school (or if you're setting up a business) you'll be able to get a profile of their business, see the type of work they are doing in relation to the school, and see any specific deals or discounts they offer to school members.
The way it's designed, the PTA gets to decide how much they would like to charge their parents to list their business and this is one way by which School Circle helps the PTA to raise money for their projects.
And, the way School Circle stays in business themselves, is that they take a small percentage of the listing fee (but only if a school should decide to charge businesses to list). Right now they take 20% of the listing cost, but as a new business that number may change. Plus, this is what allows them to offer the service for free to schools.
And basically, that's School Circle! It's an excellent resource for connecting parents and businesses to your school and for building a stronger community. On top of all that, it's a completely free resource! So, if this is something that might benefit your school or district, I definitely recommend sending them a message to get your school added to the list. Overall, they are an excellent and simple to use service that has a lot to offer today's schools.
All the opinions expressed in this review are my own.
I was not compensated for writing this review.