Francis Lewis Implements CareMonkey Communication System

Francis Lewis High School is implementing an online system called CareMonkey to reduce the use of paper in the school. When this system is fully functional, paper usage in the school will become minimal as mostly all forms will be distributed to parents and guardians online. 

“CareMonkey is a system that is designed to improve distribution and communication between schools, families and staff,” Principal Dr. Marmor said. “At the same time it is a tremendous environmentally positive product because it will reduce the use of paper dramatically.”

 With the use of CareMonkey, almost anything that is distributed to students and collected from them on paper will soon be switched to digital two-way documents between staff and guardians. CareMonkey allows the school to send documents to the families of students, such as trip forms, medical forms, or even simple notices that students would normally get in their attendance periods. When sending documents like trip forms or medical forms, CareMonkey allows guardians to fill these out digitally and sign them digitally as well. 

“The information is as secure as anyone’s money in the bank or anybody’s mortgages that are being done online,” Dr.Marmor said. “It’s rated with the same security level as banks and government agencies.”

About 68 million trees are cut down each year to produce paper. Paper accounts for 25% of waste in the landfill and 33% of municipal waste. Francis Lewis has approximately 4,500 students, which means that for one memo, the school prints 4,500 copies (assuming it’s one page). Most of those copies do not even make it out of the building. Also, to plan one trip, the school would need to use about 400 pieces of paper. With CareMonkey, the amount of paper used in the school becomes minimal and it will ensure that parents and guardians receive information immediately.

“We have about 25% of the parents signed up, which means we still have 75% more to go,” Dr. Marmor said. “We will now be registering all of the new incoming freshmen at the orientation, so that would take care of 1,100 or 1,200 kids right from the beginning. But again, we’re just starting that cycle.”

“We’ll be putting out more messages to parents requesting that they sign up and hopefully within the end of the year, we can get to the point where we have almost 100% engaged.”

Many students are excited about this idea and think it will benefit the school drastically.

“I think it would be a good idea overall because it would save paper,” senior Raziah Rahman said. “If you lose a form, you wouldn’t have to worry about that since the form will be online for you to see or fill out.”

Although students believe CareMonkey is a step in the right direction, some are still skeptical about the system itself. 

“It could be kind of bad because some people can not get access to it and maybe there are glitches and all that, you know how technology can be,” junior Ryema Shafi said. “Maybe people can’t get access to it as easily as it would be if it was just on paper.”

Senior Ethan Kim also has some concerns.

“I think it’s a good idea in theory, but they’re still going to have to iron out some of the details,” Kim said. “For example, parents who don’t speak English as their first language or English at all. You’re going to have to somehow communicate, let’s say a trip form, to them.”

The implementation of CareMonkey will be fairly slow, as the school will teach the staff how to properly use the system and have all parents sign up. The goal is for the system to be fully up and running in a couple years. 

“We really do believe when we get everybody signed up and practicing how to use it, it’s going to have a very dramatic change in the way we do things and communicate with each other,” Dr. Marmor said. “But even more importantly, it’s going to have a huge impact on the environment because we’ll be saving tens of thousands of pieces of paper a day.”