CHARLES TOWN – Some people think of sled riding, holidays, and cozy fireplaces when they think of winter; but for anyone who works for a local school, winter means closings and delays. Jefferson County Schools recognizes that the decisions to delay or close school impact busy families. That’s why they have partnered with SchoolMessenger, the most trusted provider of notification, website, and mobile app solutions for schools, to launch a new text messaging service.

This new service will complement existing communication methods.

“Text messaging will enhance our ability to get the word out quickly in the event of an emergency,” according to Public Information Officer Hans Fogle. “We can reach more people more quickly once they get signed up for the service.”

Anyone interested in signing up must text a “Y” or the word “YES” to 67587 using their cell phone. The information will remain confidential and will never be given out or sold to anyone. Fogle said it will be used for important updates only.

“This won’t be for everyday announcements,” Fogle said. “We’ll use this for things like weather cancellations, early dismissals, and other situations that affect our schools and our families.”

The service is free to use outside of an individual’s existing text or data rates, and it comes at no cost to the school system because it is an additional feature of the voicemail service from SchoolMessenger that Jefferson County already uses.

“It’s really a win-win for the school system and the community,” Fogle said. “The key is to get as many people to opt in as possible.”

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