Sending an email

You can send out email communications individually or to an entire group, depending on your permissions. If you can't send communications, check your access following these instructions.


Creating the email

Go to School > Communications > Email > New Mail Merge Email to create a new draft, or to Email > Email Drafts to access past saved drafts. You can see more information about drafts here.




You have the option to use an email that has been created as a template, by clicking on the 'Load Email Template' button (top right) and choosing one from the drop-down list. You can see more information about templates here: Using Email/SMS/Letter communication templates

If you don't see this button, follow the tips in this article: Why can I not see the Load Template button for email/SMS/letters?



Sender and recipients

Select who to send the emails as by clicking the drop-down menu in the 'From' field.

For example if you are a permitted sender, you may be able to send the email in another staff member's name, your name, or on behalf of the school.



Select recipients by clicking the 'To' drop-down menu, or the plus button.  

Here you can select who you will send your email to.  This can be an individual, selected by scrolling through the list or typing the name and selecting the appropriate individual.  You can also send to different groups, such as a student's teachers, all enrolled students or their guardians.

Top Tip: Can't select anyone in the 'To' box? Clear your current email draft by clicking the Discard Draft button at the bottom of the page.



In the 'Combine emails?' section, you can choose whether you want to combine emails. Take a look at this article for full details on what each option means.



Writing the email

Enter your 'Subject' in the appropriate box, followed by the body of your message in the message field.

The Merge Fields selection box may be used to customise each email to the appropriate individual as shown below.

Using the editor, the default font is PT Sans with a size of 14. It isn't possible to set this centrally, so you would need to amend it for each new draft or template. When returning to a draft, the settings already selected will remain applied, and won't revert to the default.

Don't see the fields you want? Follow these instructions: Creating a Mail Merge using data from a Custom Report Writer report


Any attachments can be uploaded to the email by 'Drag and Drop' or selecting 'Click to upload files' at the bottom of the 'Attachments' box.

The email signature will automatically populate using the school's printable logo and contact details if added to School > School Details. You can add your own signature if needed.



Sending or saving the email

At the bottom of the page, you can click Save Draft, or Proceed.



Preview the email

After clicking proceed, you can then see a preview of the email. In the Individual Recipients section, click the preview icon.

Please note that the recipients list here is in random order.



You can then see what the email will look like for the individual recipient. It's worth noting that separate emails will be sent to all the listed recipients, so you don't need to worry about recipients seeing each others' email addresses. 



Edit the recipient's email addresses

If you have one of these permissions (depending on who you've chosen to email), you can edit email addresses before sending out the email: Staff Profile: Contact Details: AdministerStudent Profile: Contact Details: Administer or Student Profile: Guardians: Administer.

Click into the Has Email Address? field you can click Edit in the slide over.



You can change the email address or delete it. Please note that this will change or delete the email address on the person's profile, not just for this email.



Sending the email

At the bottom of the page before sending you’ll see the total number of messages you’re about to send.

Once you are happy with the way the email looks:



To help prevent users from sending sensitive information to unintended recipients, we’ll ask you to confirm you’d like to share the attachment when sending emails to 3 or more people.



What's next?

You can see how to view the emails you've personally sent here: Seeing the Communications I've sent

You can also view a log of all communications sent, or download the communication log.

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I'm still stuck!


  • Is there a way to schedule when an email is sent?

  • Hi Nicola,

    At the moment there is not a way to schedule messages to be sent in the Arbor, you will need to send the email when it is due to go out.

    We are looking at making improvements to the communication module within Arbor you can find this in our Arbor Product Roadmap. You can vote on how important this is to you and your school by voting on the post. You can also see everything else in the roadmap and vote on it as needed. You can find the Arbor Product Development Roadmap here: 

    Thanks for getting in touch!

  • How does the bulk email sender decide which email address type to use? I'm adding our students' school email addresses to their "Work" email, but there's no specific option to use this when sending a bulk email.

  • Hi James, thanks for the question! If they only have one email address, it will be sent to this email address. If the student has multiple email addresses added to their profile, it will send to the email address set as the default.

    To see and edit which email is the default, go to the student's profile and click the email addresses in the Contact Details section. You should get the option to select whether the email is the default or not.

    You can also use the bulk importer to add email addresses, which will set the imported email address as the default!


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