Social media site caters to schools

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — People turn to social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to share information all the time.

Now schools have a way to do the same on a secure, private network known as Drund.

“As a parent, I felt there was a need for how people communicate using free social networks like Facebook and Twitter, but there had to be more control,” said Drund founder Lee Yi.

So he created Drund, a private social networking system that can be used by non-profits, the health care sector and education.

When a school district uses Drund, it’s only available to faculty, staff, parents and students. They get a specific user name and password.

“So it’s only who they allow in and only whatever privileges they give them, whether it’s to post information, send a message, they can take down content, put up content,” Yi said. “In education there are a lot of different organizations, a lot of different buildings and there are a lot of different channels to get their information from. Drund helps these schools effectively centralize all that and for parents, they know where they can go too.

Drund is currently up and running at Austintown Fitch High School, where students are using it to stay up to date with all their clubs, extracurricular activities and even class assignments.

“Before this, each teacher had their own website and you’d have to go to a new website and another. And instead of that, you go on Drund and all your teachers are there,” said Austintown Fitch High School junior Nathan Shively. “If you miss a day of school, you can get all of your homework, all the lesson plans you’ve missed.”

It can be accessed through a mobile app or on a PC.

“From a security standpoint, it’s critical to have a constant pulse of what’s going on in the district so you can easily access it,” Yi said.

The site is endorsed by the Mahoning County Educational Service Center. Canfield, Boardman, Struthers, Jackson Milton and Poland school districts will start using Drund in the next few months.

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