ReachMyTeach made by a student-teacher team for teachers
ReachMyTeach making it easy for families, students, and teachers to connect in ways that work for them.
How it began
Jeff Borland, a 20+ year computer science and math teacher in Portland, Maine, identified a need for a more effective communication system to reach his students and their families. Aidan, a student proficient in coding and game development, saw this as an opportunity for a senior year project. Together they created ReachMyTeach. Parents were now able to communicate in their preferred language: teachers were able to provide timely updates to all families: and schools were able to support family engagement.
ReachMyTeach takes off:
With the support of teachers, families, and administrators at their school, Jeff and Aidan were soon beta testing ReachMyTeach. The feedback they received was extremely positive; parents appreciated the convenience of the texting feature, while teachers, nurses, principals, and Special Education staff were pleased to be able to send messages to all families in their preferred language.
Soon other schools were using ReachMyTeach, and they saw a dramatic increase in parent engagement. Administrators reported that ReachMyTeach was having a positive impact on attendance and was increasing the feeling of inclusiveness in the school community. Realizing that other districts would benefit from the same success, Faria Education Group, a leading provider of international education systems and services, partnered with Jeff and Aidan. With Faria’s support, ReachMyTeach started helping many districts elevate their school-home communications!
As ReachMyTeach expanded, the team grew in size to accommodate the increased demand. The addition of Helen, who formerly beta tested ReachMyTeach in her history and ESL classes, strengthens the team’s capabilities.
As a teacher, Helen experienced the most benefit from using ReachMyTeach through the immediate communication with parents. “The part I loved the most about using ReachMyTeach was the positive texts home. Parents would be so excited to hear a student’s hard work paid off. It really helped with building up a student’s self-esteem and created a connection between home and school. This simply wasn’t happening before ReachMyTeach.”
Kelly Thornhill sees those same benefits at East End Community School in Portland, where she is the Assistant Principal
At a time when there is a lot on teachers’ plates, the platform makes it more efficient and easier to communicate with parents, she said.
She believes it works so well for schools because it was designed by a local student and teacher.
The Team regularly talks to staff and families about how the platform is working and makes adjustments, like adding features that make it easier for educators and sending messages home on WhatsApp for parents.
It’s just amazing because they’re so responsive and they’re developing the software. All of a sudden they’ve tweaked it and there’s another thing that makes it work even better,” School nurse Lizzie Nalli said.
I’ve never used any sort of program where I knew the software developers and they continuously make it work better.
GILLIAN GRAHAM Portland Press Herald,