Director’s point of view, I could use this to make an online library of downloadable sheet music for my bands and music classes. Any music I upload can be assigned to a specific class, band, or instrument groups. The phrase, “I forgot to bring my music home with me” would no longer be an excuse. Since I use only original arrangements of songs for my Senior High Music classes, no copyright laws would be broken. I can use it to communicate with parents and students about upcoming concerts, field trips, etc. I can broadcast to any number or groups of students that I need to. While I can set up as many different groups as I need to, iSchoolBand comes with the standard band sections preset for the user. And like FaceBook I can post a “what’s on my mind”. This comes in handy for sending out a broadcast, “Great Job at the last concert!”
Students: Students are able to post comments are each other’s walls and send communications to the director. This is handy for student’s who may have forgotten about a performance, who may need to carpool, or simply exchange ideas they have for making rehearsals better, or for thoughts on new songs. iSchoolBand has filtering software for comments. Directors can add custom words to comments in case students find another way of saying something inappropriate.
Parents: Parents can communicate to each other or director. This allows Booster organizations to have a common forum where communication is ongoing and not hindered by the unavailability of one person. Parents also are the only ones who can register their students, since the student pass codes are emailed to the parents.
iSchoolBand offers a free 1-year membership if you register before December 25, 2009. I, of course, registered. I like the feel of iSchoolBand. It’s still in the beta version but it feels really solid. I did email iSchoolBand with a question on setting up custom instrument groups. I received an immediate response and a workaround. The feature I wanted isn’t currently available, but they said that they would seriously consider adding it.