August 2, 2017
Back-to-School is an exciting time for both students and staff and is the ideal time to set new goals in motion. Capitalizing on the natural optimism and enthusiasm that accompanies the first few weeks of school will give your programs the boost they need to become successful. That’s why you need to prepare your school marketing plan during the summer, so it is ready to put in motion on the first day back to class.
You probably already know the areas of your school that need attention and improvement, but unless you get specific with those goals, you aren’t likely to reach them. Now is the time to create actionable steps for reaching your objectives. To do that, you need to know exactly where you want to go. Goals to improve parent involvement or to raise test scores mean nothing until you commit specifics such as increasing attendance to school functions by 20 percent or raising student scores in math to a proficient level. Take advantage of databases and software to analyze your current situation and set reasonable project goals.
It is easy to get caught up in thinking you need to do everything at once, but this can be overwhelming and inefficient. Go through your goals and arrange them by priority. Choose three or four of the most important goals to work on the first year. Some can easily be accomplished in a year, but some may be easier to achieve over several years. Don’t be afraid to set short-term goals that must be reached as steps along the way. Computer software to measure and track your progress will keep everyone up to date on where you are at with your goals.
Collecting and Using Data
Parents and community members often demand decisions based on data, but that shouldn’t be a problem. By using sophisticated software programs to analyze test score results and trends, student and community survey results, school climate surveys and digital student portfolios, you will have the data you need at your fingertips. Publishing the data results on the school website gives parents and community members easy access and helps to reinforce your goals.
Determining Student and School Needs
Persuading parents and community members to support investments in areas they are not accustomed to can be difficult. For example, it may be challenging to gain support for increasing technology for students, especially in schools that have maintained traditional classrooms. The idea that children learn best with digital devices may not be received well, and consequently, new technology may not be seen as worthwhile. But, if you have done your homework and present verifiable data to support your goals, you will likely gain support from those who value data-driven decisions.
Planning and implementing at the beginning of the year will help you reach your goals and lets everyone know what they are striving for. If you need assistance setting your plan in motion or need some marketing or communication advice, contact us at Allerton Hill Consulting, LLC today.