Emergency Notifications

What is an emergency notification system?

Hawthorn uses an automated notification system that provides pre-recorded messages in a relatively short amount of time.

When will the emergency notification system be used?

In general, Hawthorn will use the emergency notification system in the event of urgent situations, such as school closings due to severe weather or for other emergency situations deemed by the Superintendent to warrant immediate notification. Occasionally we may use the system to deliver more routine announcements.

What telephone number will receive the emergency number

The emergency notification system is set up to send a voice message to the student’s home telephone number, as provided by the parent/guardian during registration. Parents may alter this delivery by logging in to the system and making changes (see below). Please note that in an extremely urgent situation, the Superintendent may decide to over-ride all preferences and send messages to any/all contact points currently on file for each student.

Can I change how my emergency message is delivered?

Yes. The School Messenger emergency notification system allows parents to log into their PowerSchool parent account and make changes to how messages are delivered – including setting a different main contact telephone number from the list of phone numbers on file for the student, adding an additional telephone number, requesting text message delivery, and requesting email message delivery. Parents are not required to log in and manage their emergency notification account. Rather, this option is provided as a convenience.

Where does the contact information come from

Initial contact information used by our emergency notification system (and our school offices in general) is provided by parents during the registration process. Initially, the emergency notification system is set to send a voice message to the student’s home phone number. Parents may chose to modify this information (see above).  Keep in mind that while a parent/guardian can select alternate contact preferences through the emergency notification system, parents cannot use this method to update contact information in their student’s general records. When parents/guardians make changes in their contact information, it is extremely important that they contact their child’s school office with the new information.

How does the system work?

When the need arises to send a notification, the Superintendent and/or his designee will record a message that will be broadcast to the appropriate contacts (as described above). We also provide a similar message in Spanish to those families who have so requested. For voice messages, the automated system will make three attempts to reach the numbers on file and will make every attempt to leave a message on answering machines and/or voice mail. For families who have requested text and email messages, the automated system will make one attempt to send the message.

How else can I stay informed?

For emergency situations, such as school closures, Hawthorn posts information on our District website (http://www.hawthorn73.org) and notifies http://www.emergencyclosingcenter.com, which in turn provides messages to local radio and TV stations. For snow days, Hawthorn works with administrators from other local school districts as well as representatives from its transportation company, public works, police and fire departments to make closing determinations prior to 6 a.m. of the day in question.