Sending SMS or emails to members of Staff or to a student's teachers

You can send a mail merge SMS to teaching groups, specific members of staff, business roles or teachers of a specific student. 


  • Students: Communications: Administer All Students - Send communications to all student's teachers (administrators will have this permission by default)
  • Students: Communications: Administer My Students - Send communications to your student's teachers (teachers, those set as the Academic Lead for a class, will have this permission by default)
  • School Communication: Action: Send and Administer School Communications: Administer - Send communications to members of staff by their name, rather than as the teacher of a student.

If you don't have the permission, you'll need to ask your admin team to give you permission using these instructions


Sending the communications

Send the communication by going to School > Communications > Select communication type > New Mail Merge. Type the name of the student into the 'to' box and you should have the option to choose this particular students' teachers.

  • Selecting Student name (Academic Leads) will send to only the Academic Leads of the courses the student is enrolled into, not including the timetabled staff members.
  • Selecting Student name (Teachers) will send to any staff member assigned to a timetable slot of a lesson the student attends.

You can see how to change academic leads and staff assigned here: Change teachers, academic leads and staff assigned to registers and timetable slots

If you do not see any business roles or members of staff within the To drop-down list, this may be because you do not have the required permission to send communications to these recipients. 



We recommend choosing one of the One email recipient options when sending emails to staff.

Once you've selected this for the relevant students you can compose the body of the email as normal.

Then scroll down to the bottom of the page when you're ready and click Proceed. You'll be able to review the contents of your email and the recipients before sending.



Which staff are included in All Internal School Staff?

All staff with an active business role are included in this tag, except for these roles:

  • External Auditor
  • External Manager
  • Governing Body Member
  • Local Authority Official

To include or exclude staff from communications, you can select the staff when sending the communication, or set up a Custom Group.

Some of the recipients have a cross

Staff won't be sent the communication unless they have an email address/number dogged on their profile. If you find like the above example that some recipients have an x next to their name, you can add their email address by clicking on the X and entering their email address in the slide-over.

To add email addresses you'll need the permission Staff Profile: Contact Details: Administer



Staff are not receiving SMS from Arbor

This could be due to the member of staff not having a number listed as a mobile number.

You can check this by going to the member of staffs profile and scrolling to Contact Details. The number needs to be listed as Mobile.

If the member of staffs number is not listed as a Mobile number, you can change this by clicking on the number.



Click on Edit at the top right of the slide-over menu.



Change Number Type to Mobile using the drop-down list. Finally, click on the green Save Changes.

The member of staff will now receive SMS using the Mail Merge SMS feature within Arbor.


Was this article helpful?
0 out of 1 found this helpful
I'm still stuck!



Article is closed for comments.