Canvas Parent 3.1 beta for Android and iOS - incoming!
Android 3.1 beta link: https://play.google.com/apps/testing/com.instructure.parentapp
iOS 3.1 beta link: https://testflight.apple.com/join/JDVOYyT9
In this version of the parent app, we added support for messaging between parents and teachers. This has been a request since we originally launched the app, and we think we've figured out how to incorporate messaging in a way that benefits both parents and teachers (and in turn, students)! Here's what's new.
- Floating message icon:
Parents have access to messaging from several views around the parent app, including the assignment details view shown above.
- Pre-filled composition view:
Since the parent tapped to compose a message from the assignment details view, we pre-populate the subject field with the student name and assignment, and set the recipient as the teacher of the course.
- Contextual message:
When the parent sends a message, the student name and a link to the related assignment are automatically appended to the end of the message the teacher receives, so absent any other context, the teacher can see which student/course/content the parent was referencing.
- Inbox in parent app:
The parent receives the teacher's reply in a simplified inbox in Canvas Parent.
A few other things to note:
- All of this is using the existing Canvas inbox/messaging features that teachers and observers can already access in Canvas web/API/other Canvas apps today.
- We hope this improves the communication flow between teachers and parents in a way that doesn't introduce unnecessary noise and helps support students. Feedback is welcome.
- iOS plans to release 3.1 to the App Store this month.
- Android won't release 3.1 outside the Play Store beta linked above. As per the original plan, Android will release all of the 3.0+ updates to the Play Store as 3.2, and from there the iOS and Android parent apps will be in lock step again. My guess is that 3.2 will ship to the App Store and the Play Store next month.
Up next: new calendar for parents (Canvas Parent 3.2) and students (Canvas Student 6.7)!