image

16/04/2024

How to integrate GOV.UK Notify for free SMS messages for schools.

avatar Author - Edulink One

Last updated: 17/04/2024

GOV.UK Notify offers free text messages for state-funded schools.

GOV.UK Notify provides a low cost communication options for schools, including emails, SMS messages and letters. Edulink One is able to connect into this service to offer you the ability to send your text messages for free. There’s an annual allowance of 5,000 free SMS messages per school. You can find out more about GOV.UK Notify on their website.

The downside of the GOV.UK Notify free/low cost system is that SMS replies are not possible, so you need to consider if this is the right solution for your school.

Learn more about Edulink One’s school messaging system here.

Please note this article was correct at time of publication. Please get in touch with support if the steps or screenshots no longer match up to the process.

Your school can sign up here: https://www.notifications.service.gov.uk/

Signing up is easy and once you have an account, you will need to sign in to create an API Key and template for Edulink One to use.

Create API key

1. Sign in to GOV.UK Notify here: https://www.notifications.service.gov.uk/sign-in

GOV.UK Notify sign in screen


2. Select API integration from the dashboard menu.

API Integration


3. In the API integration menu, select the API keys button.

API Integration API Keys


4. Create a new Live API Key.

Create an API key


5. Copy the API Key – you will need to enter it in your Edulink One settings later on.

Copy the API Key

Create template

6. You now need to create a template for Edulink One to use.

Create a template


7. Click the New Template button, select Text Message and continue.

Click new template button


8. Give the template a name and in the Message field enter
((body)). Click save.

Give the template a name


9. On the template screen, click on the template you have just created and copy the Template ID – you will need to enter it in your Edulink One settings next.

copy the TEMPLATE ID
example template ID

Please note: Before you go live with GOV.UK Notify, you’ll see this check list to make sure you’ve got everything in place. You may see this after step 4, when you first create the live key.

Before you request to go live

10. Now log in to your Edulink One administrator account and go to your Edulink One settings and select the Communicator tab.

11. Enable the SMS messaging option and select GovNotify from the provider list.

12. Enter the API Key and Template ID you noted down from the previous steps and save the settings.

Set up GOV.UK Notify as your SMS provider in Edulink One

You’re now set up and ready to go.
Please remember to test that messaging is working properly.

Frequently Asked Questions

I’ve heard that GOV.UK Notify offers a larger free SMS allowance – what’s happened?

Until 31st March 2021, the free allowance per school was 25,000 SMS messages a year. This was reduced in 2024 to 5,000 SMS messages per year along with updated pricing.
The most recent pricing took effect on 1st April 2024 and the additional message cost has risen to 2.27p per message. See detailed pricing for the latest rates.

What else can GOV.UK Notify offer schools?

Read all about it here.

What types of message can Edulink One send?

Edulink One’s messaging system can send push notifications via the app, emails and SMS messages, depending on what contact details are in your MIS system and your preferences. You can set up messaging in the way that best suits your school. Read about Edulink One’s messaging functionality here.

 


You may also like

  • Articles

    4 Steps to make sure you release your exam results successfully

  • Articles

    Four tips for rolling forward to the new academic year

  • Downloads

    Download our brochure today!

  • Downloads

    Edulink One functionality overview

  • Articles

    Top 5 benefits of running summer clubs at your school

  • Articles

    The importance of celebrating achievement and tracking behaviour