Google Voice is a FANTASTIC tool to use for contacting parents (or anyone, really) while shielding your personal phone number from the public (or just your syllabus. LOL)
Besides simply having a separate number to give out to students and parents on my syllabus, I also enjoy using Google Voice for:
- Texting with families instead of calling
- Whether your parents don't pick up the phone or you yourself would prefer texting, its fantastic as another channel of communication that doesn't require parents to signup for something else (like Remind or Classtag)
- The freedom to communicate from my laptop OR my cellphone (or you could also use a tablet)
- You can place a call right from your school laptop using on the Google Voice app (or use your smartphone, the old-fashioned way)
- Voicemails (and a transcription of the recording) that come straight to my email
- If the transcription is good enough, (which it usually is), you can get the gist of what the parent needs without having to listen to the voicemail at all!
- Screening calls
- This setting prompts callers to say their name before it connects to you, so you can answer the call with confidence that if there's a conversation you need more time to prepare for, you can still send that caller to voicemail.