Just throwing this question out there. What are you using to page parents? Do you use pagers or do you somehow put a number up in the auditorium? If a number is put up in the auditorium, how do you do it? Do enter the number yourself from the kids area? Do you call the tech booth and have them put it up? Share what you’re doing please!
In the past I used pagers, but it was really expensive. I know that it’s one of the best alternatives if you have an adult Sunday School program. I’ve also used the simple LED light displays where either we called the tech booth or walked up there ourselves to and entered the number before. Most recently here at gateway we had a system rigged up on a laptop in the kids area where we could type in the number and it immediately displayed on the lower right corner of the screen in the auditorium. Unfortunately that system broke about 3 weeks after I got to Gateway and now we use AIM to IM the tech booth and have them put up the number. I’m contemplating moving toward just texting parents though as many don’t respond to our pages.
What do you do to page parents?
Join the Daily Dispatch!
If you're a kidmin content junky... submit your name and email and you will get the following:
• Daily updates from the blog
• Weekly blog summaries with exclusive content
• Access to amazing resources
ALL DELIVERED TO YOUR INBOX!
Hey Kenny….me again 🙂 Thank you for all of the great feedback on 252.
Regarding paging, I can tell you how it works at NP and that may be of some use. Believe it or not, their system in both the preschool and elementary areas is incredibly simple. Everyone visits the church expecting something really high tech and fancy, but we just stick with laminated tags with unique numbers….simply, inexpensive, and very reliable. I’m sure you’re familiar with the security system that utilizes the numbered security tags – one that is clipped to each kid and one that stays with the parent. At NP, this is not an electronic system, it’s actual cards with velcro to keep the two tags together until they’re assigned to a parent and child. The great thing about this is that the parents can simply stick their velcro number on the back of the chair in front of them in the auditorium so you don’t have thousands of parents digging around everytime a number pops up on the screen.
Okay…now for the paging part. I left their staff two years ago, so this may have changed since then, but I don’t think it has. To avoid overwhelming the service with numbers popping up all the time, there is a dedicated person that is responsible for communicating between each ministry and the producer at the service. They have a protocol to ensure that parents aren’t being paged unnecessarily. If the page is indeed required, they have a stack of preprinted business cards that have the name of the ministry (Waumba Land or UpStreet) and a space for the room number and the tag number. This just keeps the information that gets communicated consistent. The staff person hands that card off to the service producer that sits at the sound board and is on clear comm with all the tech people. At the appropriate time, they send the information over clear comm to the right person. Then a small message pops up on the video screens in the service saying something like “Waumba Land, Room 203, Child 576.” It’s very unobtrusive, and the tech team will know how to prevent the CG message from being captured on any video that you’re recording for other campuses to use or for products. The message stays up for approx. 10 seconds, and that’s it. Parents immediately have all the pertinent information and can easily check out their tag to see if the message is for their child without having to dig out pieces of paper or remembering to check reader boards throughout the service.
Simple. Inexpensive. Reliable.
Hey Kenny, we take the child’s id number from their badge printed from Fellowship One, and then the tech booth is alerted. Then their number is flashed across the screen. We always make sure that new parents know that we do this, b/c sometimes new kids can get freaked out.
We, like Johnny, take the child’s id number from their badge and we inform the sound booth to display the number on the screen in the front of the church. The parents then know that they need to come and attend to their child(ren). Works rather smoothly.
We use the child’s last name and F1 id typed into the check in computers from F1 the number is transmitted to a LED sign in the sanctuary connected to the network. We never have to go in the sanctuary or talk to the sound people. I love it! I looked in to pagers very expensive. TXTing isn’t a bad idea.
Hi, Sam – I am in the process of looking into the LED signs, but all I can seem to find are pagers. Since we have over 200 families, pagers are definitely not cost-effective. Can you tell me where you found your LED sign? Thanks so much!
we use the paper tags/numbers. A call can be placed to A/V booth throught the childrens coordinator and they will put it on screens in the sanctuary & lobby areas. We have some pagers for those specific parents in a class/small group where they can’t see the screen message.
It’s funny you posted about this — I was giving it some major thought a few weeks ago. We use a tag/number system that gets put up in adult church if a parent is needed. However, I was visiting a church a few weeks ago in our area that didn’t have any system in place and immediately I wondered why they didn’t at least use text messages. Using a text message to alert parents would be very simple. On your sign in sheet have parents list a cell number accessible to text during church. Remind them to have it on silent but in a place where they could see it. Then all you would need is someone in the children’s dept. with a cell phone as well. I think texting is a great idea and cost effective as well!
Can anyone tell me how the sound booth people put the child’s number on the screen? My sound guy said it wasn’t possible because we’re running power point during the sermon. I really hope there’s a way to put a small number on the corner of the screen to be unobtrusive. We’re having trouble with some parents who don’t want to get texts and some phones don’t work in our building.