The district uses the SchoolMessenger notification system to send automated messages parents/guardians and employees using the contact information that they have on file with the district (SchoolTool for parents/guardians; WinCap for employees).
As winter approaches, it is especially important for parents, guardians and employees to have their correct information on file AND update their notification preferences in InfoCenter in case of delayed openings, early dismissals and/or cancellations.
How do I verify that my contact information is correct with the district?
Parents and guardians can verify their contact information by logging into their Parent Portal/SchoolTool account.
- If your contact information is incorrect, complete the Email, Phone Number and/or Secondary Mailing Address Change Form.
- If you do not have a Parent Portal account, you will be able to create one by completing the Parent Portal New Enrollment Registration Form.
- If you have a Parent Portal account but need help logging in, please visit the Having Trouble Logging In section of www.gcsny.org/portal.
It is important to note that when a message is sent via the SchoolMessenger Notification System, the contact information is “pulled” from SchoolTool – it does not have its own “list” that can be managed separately. That’s why it is vital to ensure your contact information is correct with the district.
My contact information is correct, but I didn’t receive the alerts. Why?
It can be for a number of reasons:
1. You didn’t set up an InfoCenter account
Or you need to log in and update your account.
Parents and guardians should create an InfoCenter account in order to choose the type of messages they’d like to receive. At this time, the district offers weather alerts, emergency alerts and general alerts via phone, text and email.
If there is a school closing, delay, etc., it will be sent via the weather alert. If you did not subscribe to the weather alert via your InfoCenter account, you may not receive a notification.
How to create an infoCenter Account
Using the email address you have on file with the district:
- Either download the InfoCenter by SchoolMessenger App on your smartphone or visit www.infocenter.schoolmessenger.com.
- Click the New User button, enter your email address and create a password. You will be emailed a secure token.
- After authenticating via the token sent to your email, return to InfoCenter and sign in using your email and password.
Once set up, you’ll be able to select what alerts you’d like to receive and how you’d like to receive them.
2. You didn’t subscribe to receive text messages
SchoolMessenger needs permission in order to send texts to users. If your contact information is correct in SchoolTool and the appropriate text alerts are selected in InfoCenter, then this may be the issue.
To receive text messages, text Y to 67587 to subscribe. This may solve the issue since user consent is needed for SMS messaging. You should receive a message back confirming you are subscribed.
3. Your email or phone number is blocked
Sometimes users accidentally unsubscribe of block SchoolMessenger and will then stop receiving emails and texts. If your contact information is correct in SchoolTool and the appropriate alerts are selected in InfoCenter, this may be the case. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to verify.
I am a parent/guardian and also a district employee. Do I need two separate accounts?
Yes. Although weather-related alerts will be sent to both employees and parents/guardians, there are times when messages are specific to one group or the other.
SchoolMessenger pulls parent and guardian contact information from School Tool, while it pulls employee contact information from WinCap, our employee database.
You may need to set up two separate InfoCenter accounts: one with your employee contact information, and one with your parent/guardian contact information. Please see above for information about InfoCenter.
I received the test alerts, but my child’s other parent/guardian didn’t. Why?
Each parent/guardian who would like to receive SchoolMessenger alerts must:
- Have their correct contact information on file with the district in School Tool, AND
- Create his or her own InfoCenter account.
Please see above for information.
Am I able to get just a phone call or just a text?
Yes! A common complaint is that several alerts are received during a weather event. The district will send a notification via a home phone call, a cell phone call, a text message and an email. We do this in order to accommodate all of our parents, guardians and employees.
If you would like to eliminate some of the winter weather alerts (for example, only receiving a text message), then log into your InfoCenter and choose the type of alerts you’d like to receive.
Please keep in mind that each parent/guardian will need to manage his/her own separate InfoCenter account.
How else are we notified about school closings and delays?
Notices from inclement weather will be shared on the district website, the weather phone number 845-294-2400, and local radio stations. It’s important to rely on multiple channels in case of power outages, system failures or other incidents beyond the district’s control.