News & Notes about Blackboard Connect

  • Update No. 2 - Auto Attendance Calls and Connect for Teacher

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 2/5/2014 11:15:00 AM
    Auto Attendance:
    The Auto Attendance call feature in Blackboard Connect is now working. We have fixed most of the bugs that we initially encountered, and all calls should be functioning properly. If you are still encountering issues, please contact Jennifer Rodriguez.

    Connect for Teacher:
    Connect for Teacher is still not working due to the PowerSchool changeover. We hope to have it up and running by mid-February (previously was mid-January). You will be notified via email when it's working. Thanks for your patience.

    If you have questions, please contact Jennifer Rodriguez at

    Comments (-1)
  • Udpate: Auto Attendance Calls and Connect for Teacher

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 1/16/2014 12:15:00 PM
    Auto Attendance:
    The Auto Attendance call feature in Blackboard Connect is now working, however, some schools are still experiencing issues. There are several schools that have set their times in PowerSchool, but the calls are still not going out. We have heard that the following schools are experiencing issues. If you are, and are not listed, please contact me. We are doing our best to remedy this situation. We have heard from: Scripps Ranch High, University City High, Kearny High School of International Business, Grant K-8, Adams and Gage elementaries.
    Connect for Teacher:
    Connect for Teacher is still not working due to the PowerSchool changeover. We hope to have it up and running by the end of January. You will be notified via email when it's working. Thanks for your patience.
    If you have questions, please contact Jennifer Rodriguez at
    Comments (-1)
  • Auto Attendance Calls: Restarting Thursday Morning (Dec. 19)

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 12/18/2013 3:40:00 PM
    We believe we have resolved the issues with the auto attendance calls and will restart them tomorrow morning (Thursday, Dec. 19). We apologize for the inconvenience.

    If you encounter problems with calls tomorrow or Friday, please email Please note that due to the volume of emails and calls received regarding these issues, I may not be able to respond as promptly as desired. I appreciate your patience.
    Jennifer Rodriguez
    Comments (-1)
  • Auto-attendance Call Feature Launches Dec. 17

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 12/13/2013 2:30:00 PM
    Dear Blackboard Connect Users:

    The auto-attendance call feature in Blackboard Connect will be available to school sites starting Dec. 17.

    The auto-attendance call feature enables calls relating to student absences to automatically be sent to parents and guardians at specified times programmed in PowerSchool by each school site. Calls will not be made automatically unless the school site schedules the call times in PowerSchool. Instructions for scheduling your call time(s) are listed below and are available on page 7 of the San Diego Power User Quick Reference Guide.

    Please schedule your call times in PowerSchool by 2 p.m. on Monday to ensure the calls will go out on Tuesday.

    Automated attendance calls are optional but highly recommended. Daily automated calls, particularly those sent in the morning, are valuable in several ways:
    • Return students to the classroom earlier, turning absences into tardies
    • Act as a security measure for parents who may not know their child is absent
    • Increase opportunities for ADA recovery
    • Assist school offices and attendance clerks to better manage the daily attendance process
    Scheduling Auto Attendance Calls in PowerSchool
    1. Log-in to PowerSchool
    2. Under “Setup,” in the left-side menu, select “School.”
    3. Under “School Setup,” select “Attendance Call Times.”
    4. Follow the prompts for selecting the call times.
    * Calls will go out only if one or both boxes are checked.
    ** Please note: If you want to change one or both call times, it will take 24 hours to take effect. We are working to make the change more immediate. You will be notified if/when this time is reduced.

    The attendance message in Blackboard Connect is an automated message. A message template has already been loaded into Blackboard Connect and can be found in “Templates.” The message is titled “Attendance Message.” School sites may modify this message as they see fit.

    If you have any questions about how to setup your call times in PowerSchool, please contact the IT Help Desk. If you have specific questions about the Blackboard Connect attendance message, please email
    Comments (-1)
  • NEW UPDATE: Connect for Teacher, Auto Attendance Calls, Instructions for Attendance Calls

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 11/26/2013 1:30:00 PM
    Connect for Teacher and the Auto Attendance call feature in Blackboard Connect are still not functioning properly due to the PowerSchool changeover.
    In Connect for Teacher, rosters are not updated, therefore, teachers cannot make calls to current students. The system should be functioning by mid-January. Users will be notified when the system is functioning. Please do not schedule any calls until you've been notified the system is functioning properly.
    The Auto Attendance Call feature is scheduled to launch Dec. 17. Details and directions will be sent via email in the week of Dec. 2. In the meantime, please use the following alternative methods.
    Only a few students: Use the Attendance template and individually select the students.
    Many students: You can download your list of absent students from PowerSchool, and upload this list to Blackboard Connect. Please visit this site for instructions:
    Thank you for your patience as we work through these issues. 
    Comments (-1)
  • Hot Weather Advisory Template Ready for Use

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 9/4/2013 4:30:00 PM
    With the hot weather expected to last through Friday, it may be necessary to reach out to parents to let them know your school and the district have hot-weather plans in place for continued operations of schools during periods of extremely hot weather. We've created a message template in Blackboard Connect in both English and Spanish that is ready to be customized and recorded for your school. Once logged-in to Blackboard, the message can be found by going through the following steps:
    1. Go to Message Center
    2. Under "Outreach" click on the drop-down menu entitled "Choose a Template" 
    3. Select "Hot Weather Advisory"
    4. Customize message for your school and record
    5. Prepare and send
    If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Rodriguez at
    Comments (-1)
  • Important First-Week-Of-School Information

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 9/2/2013 1:00:00 PM
    PowerSchool and Blackboard Connect are now synchronized, which means all students should be loaded in Blackboard Connect. The only exception is CDC students. We are working to remedy this issue.
    Two important Blackboard Connect features, however, will not be functioning as we start school due to the PowerSchool changeover.

    Auto Attendance Calls:
    These calls will not be going out automatically. Please make these calls manually until notified otherwise.

    Connect for Teacher:
    The student rosters in Connect for Teacher will not be updated until at least the second week of school. You will be notified when Connect for Teacher is available for use.

    We know that Blackboard Connect is an important tool to communicate efficiently and effectively with students, parents and staff. We are working quickly to remedy these issues. I will email all users when Auto Attendance Calls and Connect for Teacher are up and running, and updates will be posted on this page and on the Staff page.
    Other important information about Blackboard Connect for the start of the school year:

    Lockdown messages:

    Three different templates (in English and Spanish) have been saved for you to use in the event of a Lockdown at your school. They are meant to be accessed quickly and can be edited to suit your needs at that time. The messages are: Lockdown, Lockdown lifted and Lockdown occurred earlier. Follow these instructions to access these templates:
    1. Click on Message Center
    2. Under “Emergency,” click on “Choose a template” and select one of the templates.
    3. Edit and record your message

    A representative from Blackboard Connect will be hosting trainings for district staff on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1. Here are the dates/times. Please sign-up in ERO.

    Monday, Sept. 30 - Emergency Operations Center Training Room
    Session 1 – 10:30-12:00 – Attendance/Clerks
    Session 2 – 1:00-2:30 p.m. – Attendance/Clerks
    Session 3 – 2:45-4:15 p.m. – Principals, Area Superintendents, Dept. Heads and their assistants

    Tuesday, Oct. 1 - Fremont Training Center B5
    Session 1 – 8:30-10:00 - Principals, Area Superintendents, Dept. Heads and their assistants
    Session 2 – 10:15-11:45 - Principals, Area Superintendents, Dept. Heads and their assistants
    Session 3 – 1:00-2:15 - Attendance/Clerks

    Other training options:
    Site Sessions: If more than 5 people at your site need training, you can schedule a site training with Jennifer Cornelius Rodriguez.
    Webinars: Available through Blackboard Connect. Login to your account and click on “Request online training” and they will contact you about scheduling a session.

    IPhone use:
    You can send messages from your iPhone (limited features available on iPads). The first step is downloading the Bb Connect app (Not Mobile Learn) from iTunes. Then review the iPhone for Connect User Manual posted under the “Tools, Training & Support” section of the district’s Blackboard Connect web page:

    Adding/deleting users:
    Please take a look at your current users and determine who needs to be added and who can be removed. Principals must authorize all additions. To add a new user, please email me the following information: Name; email address; title; phone number w/ext.; and if staff member was transferred from another site. Please allow 48 hours for the individual to be added.

    Delete old groups:
    When you search for a group in your system, do you see “10/16/10 Saturday School”? If it’s outdated or you don’t know who is included in that group, it’s time to delete. If your permissions don’t allow you to delete, email me a list and I will delete them.

    Need answers? Check out our FAQs.
    Comments (-1)
  • Update: Student Data in Blackboard Connect Now Current, Except CDCs

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 8/31/2013 2:00:00 PM
    Student information in Blackboard Connect is now current. PowerSchool and Blackboard Connect were synchronized overnight Aug. 30.
    Please note, students at the Child Development Centers are not loaded in Blackboard Connect. We are working to remedy this problem. 
    Call or email Jennifer Cornelius Rodriguez at or 619-725-5598 with questions.
    Comments (-1)
  • 2013-14 Student Data Now Available

    Posted by Jennifer Rodriguez at 8/6/2013
    Student data for the upcoming 2013-14 school year is now available in Blackboard Connect.
    Comments (-1)

Blackboard Connect 5

Blackboard Connect is a web-based mass communications tool currently available across San Diego Unified School District. The system enables schools to personally communicate with parents/guardians to support emergency preparedness, school community involvement and student attendance. 

Authorized Users

The Blackboard Connect system may only be used by district employees or authorized charter school employees. Non-employee members of external organizations, such as PTAs and School Foundations, are not authorized to use Blackboard Connect. Principals or authorized staff members are welcome to send out messages on an external organization’s behalf. For security purposes, only staff members authorized by their principal or department head for the current school year will be granted user access. Principals and department heads are asked to email with the following information for each staff member authorized to access school-wide or district-wide Blackboard Connect:
• School site or department
• Name
• Title
• email address
• Phone number with extension
• If staff member was transferred from another site

Connect 5 - Frequently Asked Questions

For responses to common questions about Connect 5, please refer to our expanded list of FAQs. This list will be updated as new questions arise.

Blackboard Connect

Quick Links & Tips
Need a Blackboard Account?
Please have your principal email authorizing you to be added to the school's account.
Need Connect 5 training?
Sign-up for online training through Blackboard Connect. Sign-in to your Blackboard Connect account, and request online training by clicking on "Send Training Request." Or, use our Quick Start Guide for help sending a message.

Forget Your Password?
Go to the Blackboard Connect log-in page and click on "Forgot Your Password." It will be emailed to you. If you are locked out of Blackboard, call Jennifer Rodriguez in the Communications Department at 619-725-5598 or email to reset your password.