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Lightbridge Academy Launches New Center Management Software Systemwide To Create Deeper Connection Between Families, Teachers, Staff and Students

By reducing paperwork, automating admin tasks and improving communication, the groundbreaking Lightbridge Journey App will result in a better educational experience for all.

By Chris LaMorte1851 Franchise Editor
SPONSOREDUpdated 4:16PM 06/07/21

Lightbridge Academy, an early education and child care franchise with more than 50 locations open across the Mid-Atlantic and another 50 under construction or in development, announced it is deploying a powerful new center-management tool, Lightbridge Journey, to all of its centers by mid-June 2021.

Under development since 2018, Lightbridge Journey provides a single cohesive, 360-degree touchpoint for parents, staff and center directors. The result of this centralized resource is increased operational efficiency, reduced operational costs and additional time spent on direct care and support of children. 

Available on a phone, tablet or the web, Lightbridge Journey was developed in conjunction with educational management software company MomentPath. It has been deployed at approximately 28 Lightbridge Academy centers so far. During the initial rollout, Lightbridge Journey saved 28 centers an additional 336 hours of time, allowing them almost an entire day per week to spend on relationship building with center families.

“The whole idea of the Lightbridge Journey app centers on this: If we can free the center directors and staff from administrative grunt work, we open up time for them to spend more time focused on the needs of the child and the parents,” said Benjamin Blake, Lightbridge Academy’s chief information officer. “Additionally, it enhances our center directors’ ability to look after the needs of teachers who are taking direct care of the children. And that is probably the most powerful aspect of the whole project.”

Transparency for Parents

Lightbridge Journey provides increased transparency to parents, by providing a direct line of communication between parents and the center, quick access to resources like “Peek of the Week” lesson plan previews and progress reports on their child’s development.

Additionally, parents are never more than a click away from checking in on their child because the app provides real-time snapshots of what’s happening with their children through photos and videos of their children’s special moments and milestones as they happen. The app also lets parents have instant, 24/7 access to their billing and accounts.

“Partnering with Lightbridge provides us with an incredible opportunity to further our mission of changing the way families and educators connect, one moment at a time. We pride ourselves on bringing the best in class experience for teachers and parents through the Lightbridge Journey application,” said MomentPath CEO, Caitlin Coffman.

Enhanced Home-School Connection

The app doesn’t stop working when children leave the center, it works as the central hub for that home-school connection. The app provides the ability to drop off notes between parents and teachers, messaging that goes directly to the child’s teacher, and offers a central resource for reminders about necessary forms, documents and other important paperwork.

“Parents love it because they're now able to directly communicate with the teachers,” said Blake. “That's more important now than ever as we navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic when parents don’t have the ability to come into the centers. This helps re-establish the parent-teacher relationship because now they can easily message back and forth on this application, even if they’re socially distanced. Parents can get real time notifications of exactly what their child is doing, or even a picture of or a video of them during the day.”

Efficiency for Administrators

For administrators, Lightbridge Journey provides all-in-one planning, scheduling, billing and even security in one central location, helping them reduce paperwork and spend more time with children. 

North Carolina Lightbridge Academy franchise owner Rebecca Grovenstein says the app provides powerful planning tools for her when running her business. “The reports can show us forecasting with billing and enrollments from one month to four months out, and will track attendance of our children,” she said. “This all helps us, as owners, to make decisions with purchasing, employment and growth of the business when setting goals."

“We estimated that we’ve saved more than 60 hours per month between teachers and admins in locations that we’ve deployed the Lightbridge App,” said Blake. “And that’s its purpose, to free up time so teachers can spend more time actually teaching.”

Lightbridge Academy Center Technology Manager Shannon Kelly has had two children go through Lightbridge’s early education program already, and now has a two-year-old enrolled at one of the centers. She understands the value of the app both as a parent and as an administrator. 

“The Lightridge Journey app has been great for me because I can be at the office and I can go into the app and say, ‘Oh, he's taking a nap right now,’” she said. “I can stop at the food store right now instead, rather than go to the center and wake him up from his nap.”

But she’s seen the benefits for teachers as well. Previously, the Peek of the Week lesson plan preview that was sent to parents required multiple steps and staff to be able to get it to parents. 

“Now, Peek of the Week is generated automatically as soon as the teachers put in their lesson plans,” Kelly said. “That alone saved us something like 36 hours a month.”

About Lightbridge Academy®

Established in 1997, Guy and Julia Falzarano founded the company based on core values and a Circle of Care philosophy that places equal importance on the needs of children, their families, teachers, center owners and the community. Lightbridge Academy provides early education and child care to children ages six weeks through kindergarten, as well as special programming for children up to 10 years old for summer camp and a new school age remote learning program. The company franchised in 2011 to expand their distinctive concept throughout the Mid-Atlantic region; it currently has over 119 child care centers either open, under construction or in development throughout Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Virginia.

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