Investe SP helps startup bring technology that promotes interaction with parents to public schools
App is already used by 96% of students of the vocational schools (Etecs) of eight cities in São Paulo to facilitate dialogue between students and parentsInveste São Paulo
Investe São Paulo, the investment and export promotion agency associated with the Department of Economic Development, Science, Technology and Innovation of the state of São Paulo, is helping ClassApp to bring a revolutionary app to all state vocational schools (Etecs) of Centro Paula Souza.
Winner of the Pitch Gov program, the startup was selected to solve the challenge of improving dialogue between schools and students’ parents through technology.
Therefore, the app is used to send everyday messages.So far, the technology was implemented at the Etecs of Araras, Limeira, Mogi Guaçú, Mogi Mirim, Nova Odessa, Piracicaba, Rio Claro and Santa Bárbara d'Oeste, and is used by 96% of students, totaling more than 10,000 students involved.
“Investe SP has acted as an information hub on all institutions and tools of the state of São Paulo to support innovation,” said the director of Investe SP, Ermínio Lucci.The Agency has even created an interactive map to allow startups to find services and agents within the state, the SP Conecta Map.
As of March 29, 2017, the app had registered over 260,000 message interactions between schools and families.This figure is from a survey conducted with a sample of students from nine different Etecs, with 616 students, 536 of which are app users.
Almost all of them (99%) said they would like the app to continue to be used in their school, and approximately 42% said that messages in the program are answered within 2 hours.
The agreement for the use of ClassApp by Etecs was entered into with Centro Paula Souza in 2016, after Pitch Gov was promoted by a partnership between the state government and the Brazilian Association of Startups (ABStartups).
At the time, Centro Paula Souza listed school communication as one of its obstacles.“Without the support from parents it is difficult to provide quality education.In addition, we wanted to be closer to the people we work for in order to listen to them and thus improve our performance and our service.For this reason, this project has been crucial,” says the director-superintendent of Centro Paula Souza, Laura Laganá.
The Campinas Norte regional pedagogical supervisor of the ETECs, Maria Aparecida de Azevedo Martins, corroborates the idea that a greater involvement between parents, students and school leads to significant improvements in school performance and believes that the use of the tool may even reflect in the reduction of school dropout rates.“A more effective communication results in greater commitment of everyone to school activities.Thus, I believe that dropout rates may fall with the use of ClassApp, since the participation of everyone in the educational process will be better accompanied,” she says.
“Although it is still in the initial phase, this project brings results that encourage us to make sure we are on the right track.This perennial opening of a communication channel has been a great tool to stimulate and improve the results of pedagogical effects.Without forgetting the aspects of dropout reduction and, above all, the humanization in the relations between agents of the educational process,” says Fernanda Tadaaki Ito, advisor to the Superintendent of Centro Paula Souza.
For the CEO and co-founder of the app, Vahid Sherafat, ClassApp solidifies the relationships that permeate all agents involved in the school community by revolutionizing the unilateral communication model that has been in effect so far. “In addition to being efficient and practical, a great advantage in this process is that it allows parents to talk directly to a coordinator or a director of their child’s school.It is an unprecedented and extremely valuable step for the proximity and quality of this relationship,” he says.
The agreement between the state government and ClassApp gained prominence for being one of the first projects that contemplates the public sphere involving startups.While the government ensures proximity to modern and innovative technologies in a streamlined manner, the agreement encourages entrepreneurship and the development of startups in validating their ideas and leveraging their operations.
According to Sherafat, ClassApp creates a private, exclusive and fully manageable communication network for schools.The operation is simple and intuitive, similar to “WhatsApp”, but fully adapted to meet the demands of an educational institution.The tool is multichannel and has an intelligent system, capable of measuring the visibility of the communication (i.e. knowing who read each message).
The app allows schools to share, in real time, both general announcements (such as events and meetings) and specific messages to each student or class, and send them directly to parents, students, teachers or staff.Similarly, families are also able to interact with any department of the school through the app.
To ensure that the message reaches its recipient, the system used by the app is able to instantaneously identify whether the messages are received and read and make automatic decisions, routing the communications by email or SMS, in case the student or parent does not have the app installed.It is also possible to send photos, PDF documents, interactive polls and detailed reports to report details of the school routine of each student.Another innovation brought by ClassApp is the adoption of digital signature (supported by Law) to validate notices or authorizations.
In the private school system, the app is used by approximately 250 schools across the country - which means that it is present in the school routine of nearly 130,000 students.