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TLDR: Here are six thing to include in comms in '22:
🎥 Include videos
📝 Embed surveys
🗓 Add upcoming events
🔗 Link to resources
🧑‍⚕️ Share health updates
🖥 Offer virtual experiences

As schools shifted toward remote and hybrid learning throughout 2020, communication between educators and families became more important than ever.  In fact, a recent survey revealed that 60% of American parents were more likely to develop a stronger relationship with their child’s teacher than they previously had.

And although things have begun to return to normal, the expectations around school communication forged during the pandemic are here to stay. Parents now expect – rightfully – more health information from schools, more resources for Social and Emotional Learning, and more interactive content overall.

Here are 6 ideas for engaging content you can include in your next school newsletter, to help keep parents in the loop with everything that's going on.

1. Make it visual: Include photos and videos of school events for far-away family members

Embed pictures or videos of school events like sports games, science experiments, drama performances, or book fairs. Including this kind of media allows parents, grandparents, and extended family who can't enjoy in-person events to feel a part of everything that's going on.

Hear the touching story that Elementary School Principal Jay Billy shared with us: A student’s grandmother, who lives abroad, was able to regularly enjoy photos of her grandson – thanks to the school's weekly newsletter.

2. Embed a Google Form to solicit parent input

Promote parent engagement by asking parents what they'd like to learn more about. You can suggest topics such as modern parenting strategies, the best extracurricular programs, or how to bring up sensitive topics with kids.

3. Include upcoming projects and deadlines -  Loop in parents on upcoming projects, assignments, and tests so they can support their kids as deadlines approach. For big events like field trips or parent-teacher conferences, consider adding some sort of RSVP, so that parents can quickly add the event to their calendars.

See an example from one of our newsletter templates above.

4. Link to educational resources - Deepen the connection with parents by sharing educational and development resources. Provide insight into your  curriculum through interactive content, such as video demonstrations of STEAM-based activities, or on how the school supports specialized programs such as SEL. Get inspired by one of our recent templates below.

Back to School SEL Resources | Smore
This template is only a click away. Smore users enjoy this and lots more free school newsletter templates.

Furthermore, promote parent engagement by asking parents what they'd like to learn more about. You can suggest topics such as modern parenting strategies, the best extracurricular programs, or how to bring up sensitive topics with kids.

5. Add guidance from the school nurse or health department - The pandemic changed how schools operate from a health and hygiene perspective. School nurses are often involved in helping students and faculty return safely back to school, and in compliance with COVID-19 regulations.

You can keep parents up-to-date by including the school's medical guidelines and policies. Present the info in an engaging manner with a video message, a chart, a PDF, or an infographic.

6. Promote virtual experiences - While in-person teaching is largely back, some students are either still learning from home or "attending" virtual events like field trips or college tours. Digital communications are the perfect way to support this hybrid remote learning structure. Help parents set their kids up for success by showing them how to access virtual education tools and encourage them to join in on the experience.

Include any of these parent hooks in your next school newsletter and watch your open and engagement rates soar!