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We went to Schoolmessenger after dropping Blackboard Connect for the same
reason that you mentioned.  It is working well for us.


Just FYI: Blackboard goes too cheap in routing calls to save money.
Blackboard claim that calls go through, though our local providers show no
evidence that the calls every hit their local network.

Congressman Welch identified this issue a couple of years ago.  Below is a
January 2017 excerpt from VT Digger
<https://vtdigger.org/2017/01/30/welch-backed-bill-rural-phone-quality-moves-ahead/#.WgG1GWiPK70>
:


residents of Vermont and other rural states experience persistent problems
with incoming long distance and wireless calls. The FCC reports that such
calls are often plagued by choppy sound quality, long ring periods or even
prolonged silence before the call connects. Sometimes long distance calls
to rural areas will simply not connect, or faxes won’t go through.

The reason relates to the higher charges long distance and wireless
carriers have to pay to local telephone companies to complete calls. In the
complex process of routing a call to a local company’s network, a national
company must pay an additional access charge, which helps cover the
higher-than-average costs of setting up rural phone networks.

In efforts to shrink these additional costs, some wireless and
long-distance carriers have contracted with third-party companies that
route calls as efficiently as possible. In this process, service quality
can suffer.






Steve Jarrett
District Technology Supervisor
Chittenden East Supervisory Union
211 Bridge Street
Richmond, VT 05477
802-858-1729
www.cesuvt.org

On Tue, Nov 7, 2017 at 8:19 AM, Christine Gibson <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Do any VT districts use Bright Arrow for mass notifications?  We are
> currently using Blackboard Connect but we've had all sorts of issues with
> call routing and messages getting "lost" in Vermont's tiny patchwork of
> phone providers.
>
> Bright Arrow is embedded in PowerSchool, which is a plus.  It does not (as
> far as I can tell) provide translation.
>
> Anyone have a review?
> *Christine Gibson*
>
> *Systems Manager*
> 802-382-1720 <(802)%20382-1720>
> [log in to unmask]
> <https://www.acsdvt.org>
>
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Search <http://list.uvm.edu/archives/school-it.html> the SCHOOL-IT Archive
>
> Manage <http://list.uvm.edu/cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=SCHOOL-IT&A=1> your
> Subscription to SCHOOL-IT
>

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