Telephoning thousands of parents at the exact same time to give them a personal message might seem unrealistic, but the PACE system (from the Los Angeles-based company with the same name) makes this possible.

PACE, which stands for the Partnership for Academic and Community Excellence, allows school administrators to create and send personalized phone messages about school events, student attendance, school closings, or last-minute announcements to thousands of parents and faculty members instantly and simultaneously.

Using the PACE web site, school officials upload the contact information, including telephone numbers, of the various people who should receive messages. Then, a school...

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