|As school districts brace for the release of the new school report card a good overall PR approach needs to be in place.
Let’s summarize this strategy in three steps:
We are already hearing from members that those who are sharing information early have received positive comments from their Boards and staff who are appreciative of being kept in the loop. That’s the power of proactive communication.
This article focuses on two things: developing your key messages and content about the upcoming school report card and taking a proactive approach for the deployment of your key messages all year long.
Samples to Help Customize Your School’s Story About the Report Card
The information provided helps put context of the school accountability reform on the college and career ready focus of new initiatives.
To address the upcoming release of the school report card, WSPRA is sharing sample materials that have been provided by other WSPRA members including CESA 6 and Ripon Area School District, used by with permission. (For a complete toolkit, provided by CESA 6, click here.) If members have ideas and samples to submit to WSPRA as a resource, please contact Heather Westgor.
Additionally, at the WSPRA Fall Conference, the State Accountability System will be presented during a Thursday session to help members better understand its focus and components. Click here for more information.
All of these resources can help you develop content: A very important piece of the communication work to be done. These materials are provided as samples only for you to customize for your schools and district. In addition to developing content, now is the time to plan deployment of your messages.
Plan your Deployment Strategies
Here’s a sample TO DO list of how to deploy the message.
1. Inventory your current communication vehicles.
2. Develop this year’s key messages.
3. Write an article that provides a preview of what’s to come.
4. Prepare school principals to talk to their staffs and parents.
Schedule parent information meeting or drop-in question and answer sessions during parent conferences, for example. One topic may be the school report card, but what are the other key messages of the district?
5. Write down a tactical plan.
Bottom-line: Acknowledge the report card, put it in the context of the improvement efforts you already have in place, and let the good stories roll all year long.
Dorreen Dembski, Director of Communications, CESA 6
November 8-9, 2012
The Wisconsin School Public Relations Association is proud to present another course of professional development in the field of communications. With today’s educational landscape in Wisconsin, making sure your audiences hear and understand your message is a crucial step in building support for your students and staff.
After reviewing this year’s membership survey, the WSPRA Board has developed a workshop that pulls together a diverse and relevant group of topics ranging from public engagement and the referendum process to using social media and key communicator networks. New this year is a track specifically tailored for District Superintendents and Administrators. We are also offering an evening networking session for conference attendees with appetizers and beverages at the hotel, a perfect chance to discuss issues going on in our home districts, talk over the day’s sessions, or simply relax with old and new friends.
Click here to download the brochure with additional information.
Click here for online registration.
| WASB Workshop
Messaging: if you don’t tell your story, who will?
In the grand marketplace of ideas, public school supporters too often let others provide messages about our schools. Do you have a district strategy to get important messages to your community? In this upbeat, interactive workshop learn how to craft a message about your district, the different ways to get it out and identifying community partners to publicly support your message – and more.
Saturday, October 27, 2012
Click here for more information.
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