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Make Announcements with Broadcast

Send a message to everyone in your school

Pratyush Chowdhary avatar
Written by Pratyush Chowdhary
Updated over a week ago

What is Broadcast ?

Broadcast is a way by which a school's staff/admin user can send Email, SMS or Push communication to not only students but also to the contacts of students and other staff members. This secure communications tool built just for schools will give schools more control over communications, unlike third-party apps like WhatsApp, FB's Messenger, and others.
🧭 Navigate : From left panel > Communications (Connect) > Broadcast
​Use this link to directly go to the broadcast

☝🏽Note - Broadcast is a new feature, talk to your Orah point of contact to enable it.

Access to Broadcast

Once you have added Communication (Connect) to your school account, head to Admin Console to provide access to other staff members
🧭 Navigate : From left panel > Admin Console > Admin - Staff > Additional Permission
​ Use this link to directly go to the staff user setting

​Select the staff user you want to provide access to, under the additional permission tab.

Search for Communication (Connect) beneath product access. There are 2 parts to communications (connects) access settings Assigned Students and Broadcast :

Assigned Students

- staff users can be assigned students in 3 different ways

  • All Students - if this option is selected, a staff user will have access to send the broadcast to all the students

  • Specific Students - if this option is selected, staff users will have access to students depending on

    • House - access students of their own houses

    • SIS Groups - access students from only selected SIS groups

    • Tags - access students from only selected Tags

  • None - this option will provide staff user access to only view broadcasts sent


Broadcasts (view and send broadcasts)

  • check the 'View and send broadcasts' options to allow staff to view and send broadcasts

  • in the absence of this setting a staff user will not be able to view the communication product label on the left-side navigation bar


☝🏽 Note - Platform-level access will not affect Broadcast access

To add bulk permission using user roles follow this article.
Read more about additional permission here.


Components of Sending A New Broadcast

Once you have permission to access Broadcasts, you can see a new product called Communications (Connect) on the left-hand menu.
🧭 Navigate : From left panel > Communications (Connect) > Broadcast
​​Use this link to add a broadcast directly

Send New Broadcast

Click on + New Broadcast in the top right corner to open a new page to add a new broadcast

Naming Broadcast Page

  • Naming makes it easy for the staff/admin to search among all the broadcasts sent

  • By default message title will be saved as the name of the page, if left blank

Selecting Recipients (receiver)

- a staff can send a broadcast to any 1 of the 3 types of users :

  1. Students - who have been added to Orah, can be sent broadcast with or without registration

  2. Contacts of students - contacts who have been added to Orah for a student, can be sent broadcast with or without registration

  3. Staff - other staff users of the school registered with Orah (shortly school will be able to broadcast staff without registration)

Applying Filters

- recipients above have 2 major selection breakdowns all & specific :

  • All students / contacts / staff - a staff user can send messages to all recipients respectively

  • Specific student - staff users can send broadcasts to specific students using below filters :

    • House - students belonging to the specific house

    • Tags - students within specific tags

    • SIS Groups - students belonging to specific SIS groups

    • Location (D)- students with specific locations

    • Open Pass (D) - students with specific open passes

    • Event Pass (D) - students with specific event passes

    [D - dynamic in nature - the filter keeps on changing depending on the component updated for location, and passes]

  • Specific contacts - student contacts have 2 types of filters:

    • Filter By Students - same level of filter as that of the Specific Student above

    • Filter By Contacts - contacts have 3 types of filters :

      • Relationship - various relationships specified like Mother, Father, Grandparents, Uncle/Aunt, Brother/Sister, Next of Kin, Guardian etc

      • Permission - contacts which are marked Approved in Orah

      • Family App Account Status - status of guardians who have created an account in Orah - Connected, Restricted Connection, Pending Invite


Choosing Channel

  • 3 types of medium which can be used to send broadcast - Email, Push & SMS

  • Staff users can send broadcasts via all 3 mediums at once

  • Under each channel selection box, the number of possible contactable recipients will be displayed


    • Email : the traditional method of communication

      • sends broadcast to the recipient's email inbox

      • email can be used as a channel for all 3 recipients

      • there is no character limit to the broadcast body for the email channel

      • broadcast sent on the same day with the same title will be received in a thread email, not as a new email (as shown below)

      • email broadcast will be received from


    • Push Notifications - new age method of communication

      • sends a broadcast to the recipient's phone directly

      • push is only available for student recipients at the moment

      • there is no character limit to the broadcast body for the push channel

      • a student needs to be logged in to receive the push on the mobile device

      • push will be displayed and stored under the Notification πŸ”” section in the student app


    • SMS - communicate without the internet

      • sends a broadcast to recipients via mobile carrier services

      • SMS can be used as a channel for all 3 recipients

      • there is 160 character limit to the broadcast message for the SMS channel

      • sending the number of SMS depends on the credit limit available to the school

Viewing the Data List of Recipients

  • Data list can be sorted by 2 options - Last Name (by default) and First Name

  • Recipients on list can be searched by name on the search bar

  • 2 tabs of receipts list will be displayed - contactable and non-contactable

  • Under the default contactable tab :

    • depending on the channel list selected, a list of recipients will be displayed

    • selected channels will be displayed adjacent to the name of the recipients

    • contactable recipients will have at least 1 channel with a green circled tick

    • if any aspects of the recipient's detail are missing - an error will be displayed in grey :

      • for email missing - 'No Email address'

      • for push missing - 'No Student App account'

      • for SMS missing - 'No mobile number'

  • If all 3 channels' aspects are missing, the recipients will be displayed under the non-contactable tab (adjacent to the contactable tab)

  • Rows available per page will be 5, 10 (default), 15, 20, 25

Broadcast Message (Title & Body)

- has 2 parts the title and the message body

  • Email received by recipients will have a subject line similar to the title

  • No char limit for email and push channel

  • 160 universal character limit for SMS channel

  • URL is functional for SMS and Email

Broadcast Responses

  • Allow students/contacts/staff recipients to receive & respond to a broadcast

  • To enable responses toggle ON - 'Allow recipients to respond to the broadcast' option above the Preview and Test section as shown below :

Components to broadcast response :

  • Response Message :
    -once enabled, similar to the broadcast message section above, you can see a space for adding a Response Message to be shown on the Response Page
    -there is no limit to the character count for a broadcast response message
    -option to replicate the broadcast message by checking 'Show the same message as above'

  • Response Options :
    -maximum of two options that can be added for the recipients to choose from
    -there is a limit of 50 character count
    -let us know if you want to use emojis

  • Response Page :
    -once the broadcast message with response is sent
    -a separate webpage a.k.a. the response page will open with the school's logo
    -response page will display both the response message and options
    -this page can be accessed via a unique URL
    -URL will displayed within the regular broadcast message
    -which works with all channels SMS, Email, Push
    -name of the related child will be displayed for contacts with more than 1 student
    -recipients can choose from any one of the options provided here


Preview and Test

- any broadcast message can be previewed and tested before sending to make sure message formatting is reached across correctly.

  • All the 3 channels and responses can be previewed

  • 2 channels - Email and SMS can also be tested

  • Test broadcast message will always be sent to the staff user creating the message


Send Now / Cancel

  • Send Now at the top right corner will be used to send the broadcast

  • Cancel button in case a staff user doesn't want to send the broadcast

  • There are no drafts or send later functionality as of now


View Broadcast Sent & Responses Received

Once you have sent the broadcast you can view it on the broadcast sent page which can also be bookmarked using the star beside the page header
Here's a quick demo (till we expand it here on the support article) :

Hope this was helpful. If you have any further questions, just click the blue chat icon at the bottom right corner of this page or write and we will help you navigate through it. Cheers !

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