Annals of Public-Education Community Outreach

A friend shared this message in which an Oakland public school–a flatlands school with a largely poor and minority population–is allegedly trying to communicate an important event to students’ families. I’m at a loss to understand what the people who put this out might have been thinking. Maybe that they are communicating to a bunch of artificial speech machines who will now what the heck they are talking about even if no human can. I especially like the time advertised for the “Community. Meetandgreet”: April 30, 2013, from “Eight Thousand Ten-Hundred until Nine Thousand Ten-Hundred.”
Did anyone listen to this machine-generated message before they robocalled families with it? Did anyone consider having a human being record a message that might have been a little more personal, not to mention a whole lot more intelligible? Did anyone wonder how this would sound to the majority of school parents who are primarily Spanish speakers (or maybe they got their own Spanish-language machine voice).
It’s hard to believe that this kind of pseudo-communication would be found acceptable at an affluent school where parents demand administrators tell them what’s happening at the school.

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