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SF District Switches Messaging System

July 4, 2010, 8:18 PM

SIOUX FALLS, SD - A change in the Sioux Falls school district's alert messaging system will allow it to better communicate with parents who don't speak English. The district will change its provider for the school-to-home phone system in the fall.

Information services director Bob Jensen says the new provider can automatically translate urgent messages into 19 languages, including Spanish, Russian and Chinese. The current system only allows messages to be sent in the language they are recorded in, usually English.

Jensen says the new provider is also cheaper, with a cost of $2.25 per student instead of $3.

District spokeswoman DeeAnn Konrad says students in the district speak more than 50 languages, so the new feature won't benefit all parents.

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