UK schools use mobile tech to share live school trip news


Locuro is the unique mobile phone tracking product which has been developed specifically for school trips. Whether it's an afternoon's sport or a longer trip to foreign climes, Locuro enables authorised parents to log in from any internet-enabled PC and join in their child's experience. This provides proven parental peace of mind and is designed to reduce the level of trip-related calls into the school switchboard.

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Lincolnshire-based mobile tracking experts Ubitrac have been working with schools across the UK to develop Locuro, a mobile phone tracking application which enables authorised parents to follow school trips in which their children are involved. The phone, carried by a teacher or helper, provides a continuous online route with photos, videos and audio blogs automatically uploaded from the phone, to be viewed both live and historically.

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A Locuro subscription provides schools with a handset, unlimited Locuro specific UK data usage, four weeks international roaming per year and 40 minutes of voice calls per month (to geographic numbers). The device is based on the same technology that protects remote workers around the world. This school-specific version was conceived after a tragic coach crash in South Africa with two British pupil fatalities. With this in mind, the Locuro 24/7 Emergency Response Team ensure that parents are kept fully informed as well as proactively warning trips of incidents that may harm or hinder them.

The 24/7 Emergency Response Centre is also being used by many schools as an Incident Communications Hub, linking together the trip and the SMT / SLT along with a whole range of help resources relating to the location and situation.

“This easy-to-use technology offers a great way of increasing parents’ interaction with the school and their children’s learning, without imposing on their independence,” said CEO Tony Foote. “It also gives parents peace of mind. Some parents really struggle when their children go away on a school trip. For the ones who don’t worry it’s simply a great way to follow their children’s progress online, see photos and videos of them enjoying their trip, and then sharing them on their child’s return.

“However, for parents who are anxious, it’s a real lifeline. They can log on whenever they want to, see where their children are and be reassured they are safe.”

On top of the hi-tech safety features, teachers are able to upload photos, videos, text and audio podcasts, which are turned into an instant record to be enjoyed online.

John Devlin, headteacher at Our Lady of Victories Catholic Primary School, said: “It’s given us a wonderful record of our four day trip to Paris. It’s very accurate. You can actually see our progress up the Eiffel Tower. It gives the different heights at which we took photographs as we climbed. We had staff and parents following it from home so they could see exactly where we were. Some parents are naturally very nervous when they send their children away from home and it provides reassurance. It enables them to log on at any time and actually see where their children are.

“One of the real benefits is you can show the children where they’ve been. They can follow their exact route on a map of Great Britain and across the Channel into France. It really brings geography alive for them in a creative and exciting way.”

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