PRESS RELEASE: Shutterfly Reveals Classroom Sharing Challenges: Parents Want Easier Ways to Share School Photos
Shutterfly Classroom Websites Offer Secure Alternative for Teacher/Parent Communication and Photo Sharing
REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Sep 27, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Just in time for Halloween school parades, Shutterfly Inc. (NASDAQ:SFLY), a leading Internet-based social expression and personal publishing service, offers parents an easier, more secure way to share classroom memories with its expanded Shutterfly Classroom Websites. The company also announces results from its recent survey which reveal that while parents are very active in their children's schools, most do not receive photos from classroom events and would welcome a better solution for sharing classroom memories.
Whether it's chaperoning field trips or serving as room helpers, parents are more involved than ever in their children's lives. 61 percent of parents who responded to Shutterfly's survey conducted in August said they, at minimum, supervise their child's school outings. Pictures are taken at classroom events like field trips, sporting events and Halloween parades, but most parents don't get to see those photos. 29 percent of parents surveyed reported that their child's school offers no organized way of distributing and sharing photos and 16 percent reported that they don't see school photos at all. Despite citing privacy and security concerns about online photo sharing, 65 percent of parents surveyed said that their child's school photos are sometimes posted on Facebook.
However, parents agree that they would like to see more photos of their children at school. 77 percent said it would "brighten my day"; 71 percent said it would help them feel more connected to their child at school; 65 percent said it would enable them to share photo memories with friends and family and 69 percent cited the ability to archive and preserve those photos as motivation.
To address this challenge, Shutterfly has launched enhanced Shutterfly Classroom Websites using feedback from teachers and room parents who agreed that a single, secure, online tool for sharing with parents would streamline communications during the school year.
"Even in today's technological world, teachers are still using paper handouts to inform and engage parents," said Peter Elarde, chief marketing officer of Shutterfly. "Shutterfly is proud to offer a safer and greener way to manage parent/teacher communication while providing parents an easy to use, secure destination to connect with classroom activities."
Quick Setup and New Site Features
Shutterfly's Classroom Websites seamlessly connect the class to share resources, coordinate volunteer needs and preserve priceless memories. Free, private and simple to create, Shutterfly Classroom Websites offer a safe and secure way to stay connected with school events throughout the year. Classroom Websites are members-only; to become a member, users must be added by the site owners. Either parents or teachers can create their classroom website using a setup wizard that guides users through three quick and easy steps.
Shutterfly Classroom Websites offer a variety of features that will save teachers and parents time, and remove the hassle of paper sign-ups and numerous back-and-forth emails. Members can post contact information for teachers, room parents and other key volunteers to have it handy and accessible, and create a class list with each child's parent contact information and a picture so everyone knows who's who. The new volunteer section makes it easy to match up parents with the needs of the classroom, enabling on-line sign-up for things like teacher's wish lists, potlucks, field trip chaperons and conference time slots. The classroom calendar helps keep everyone in the loop by sending electronic reminders about important upcoming class events. Shutterfly Classroom Websites also make it easy for teachers to post class news, links to useful school or educational websites, and even documents such as homework and class handouts so parents can access them in the event they are misplaced. Of course, Shutterfly Classroom Websites are also the place to post, share and save photos and videos from school year activities.
Halloween is a Great Place to Start
With Halloween around the corner, now is the perfect time to create a Shutterfly Classroom Website for your child or teacher. Parents say they take more photos of their children on Halloween than they do on Christmas/Hanukkah or their birthdays (according to the survey, the top occasions are Thanksgiving, Easter and the First Day of School). And why not? Parents start planning kids' costumes early: 35 percent began planning at least one month out; 21 percent began planning three months out and 9 percent started thinking about Halloween in April. In spite of the planning and effort to create and capture their child's costumes parents say they take fewer steps to secure and protect these precious memories. 54 percent of parents did not take photos of their kids last Halloween; took photos but never uploaded them; or uploaded them but did not do anything with the photos.
One of the best ways to preserve photo memories this Halloween and beyond is to create a beautiful hardcover photo book to share with friends and family. This month, Shutterfly also launches new Halloween templates and expands its Simple Path photo book experience giving customers access to their images on Picasa in addition to Facebook, their desktop and through Shutterfly, ensuring those precious shots don't get lost on the camera or computer hard drive.
For more information about Shutterfly's Classroom Share websites and other offerings, please visit www.shutterfly.com/classroomsite
Founded in 1999, Shutterfly, Inc. is an Internet-based social expression and personal publishing service. Shutterfly provides high quality products and world class services that make it easy, convenient and fun for consumers to preserve their digital photos in a creative and thoughtful manner. Shutterfly's flagship product is its award-winning photo book line, which helps consumers celebrate memories and tell their stories in professionally bound coffee table books. Shutterfly was recently named one of the top 25 Best Midsized Companies to Work For by the Great Place to Work Institute. More information about Shutterfly (NASDAQ:SFLY) is available at www.shutterfly.com. Shutterfly and Shutterfly.com are trademarks of Shutterfly, Inc.
(First posted on Monday, September 27, 2010 at 14:04 EDT)