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School UX: Issue #1--Peachjar and alt attributes

Updated: Jan 26

This is the newsletter flyer app my son's school district uses to communicate third-party information to all families.


"Peachjar: a digital flyer management system for educators."


My son's school district replaced paper flyers in backpacks with a digital email solution that goes straight to families' email inboxes. Our district pays Peachjar to manage community flyer distribution. Peachjar charges third-parties to get their flyers on Peachjar's distribution lists. Interesting concept!


I'm guessing the reasons the district made this decision include: reducing paper consumption (yay for the environment,) reducing staff load, and placing the flyer distribution burden and cost on the third-parties wanting marketing access to district families.


But.

Peachjar doesn't give alt attributes for images, making this service inaccessible to people with screen readers, to folks who conserve data by limiting image downloads, and to those paranoids (me included) who disable image downloads to deter pixel tracking.

I am curious if the third-parties using this service have an uptick in readership. Is this serving the district families? Are we a better-informed community because of Peachjar?

I wonder a lot if leaning towards all-digital solutions hurts us.

I can't be the only person who misses putting paper communication on their fridge?


And last, I wonder what this email is all about since it's just empty boxes coming up in my email address (but I guess I'm not curious enough to enable images from Peachjar.)


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