Guest Post By Dan Florell, Ph.D.
“I can’t make that time. How about 3:00pm?” reads the e-mail. This is the latest in a long line of e-mail correspondence that had gone back and forth between the school psychologist and various teachers as they try to schedule a meeting.
This does not have to be school psychologists’ reality. There are better ways to schedule meetings. One way is to use Microsoft Outlook to schedule. This works well if everyone in the school uses the Outlook calendar. However, this system doesn’t work if the meetings need to involve people outside of the school district or those who don’t use the Outlook calendar in the district.
Another alternative that works quite well and alleviates the weaknesses of using Outlook scheduling is the website Doodle (https://doodle.com/). Doodle is devoted to helping people schedule meetings, even across time zones. School psychologists can register for a free account.
Once an account has been activated, the school psychologist enters the e-mail addresses of the people that need to meet. She then puts up a range of possible days and times the meeting can occur. Doodle takes it from there by sending out invitations to participate in a Doodle poll. The poll requires people to indicate which of the available times they can make the meeting and which ones they can’t.
Once everyone responds, the school psychologist can quickly see what time is going to work for the most people and schedule the meeting. This system eliminates a ton of e-mail and scheduling headaches, particularly for larger groups where it is almost impossible to be able to include everyone.
I have used this site repeatedly over the last few year and found it to be an invaluable tool for scheduling. There is also a Doodle app if you need to schedule a lot of meetings on the go.