Montana Catholic Schools Weekly

September 29, 2014

Who's Telling Your Story?

Every Catholic school is concerned about marketing & recruiting. But Catholic schools are misdirected if they direct all their resources to parents outside of their present school (new and/or past parents). Catholic school parents do not make one decision to enroll students. They make an ANNUAL decision to re-enroll. We must confirm their decision weekly and continue to remind them of what a valuable decision they have made.

Every school has a story--a history, a culture, standards of success, an ongoing narrative of struggle and joy. Are you helping parents understand the story? The weekly newsletter is a great place to start. Are you sharing a bit of your story every week?

No one else has the perspective of a principal. No one else knows the faculty as well, knows the ebb and flow of a school year, knows the parent community, etc. etc. etc. If principals are not taking advantage of the opportunity to illuminate his/her parent community every week, he/she is missing the opportunity to educate the community.

Tell parents about the good news. The weekly newsletter should be more than information and dates. Tell them a little about the school's history. Tell them about your new curricular changes. Tell them you are visiting classes. Tell them something! When you do, you'll draw your parents in. When parents are drawn in, they are happy. When they are happy, they'll spread the word. And word of mouth is the most effective advertising!

Find a way to compile your ideas. I used to keep a stenographer's notebook on my desk where I would put ideas for the parent newsletter on the right and teacher newsletter on the left. That was the only use for that notebook. It worked for me. Now i'm using a iNotes app to keep track of my brainstorms and MS Word document on DropBox to keep track of my newsletter schedule.

Start writing. You'll soon find that parents are grateful and engaged.

Dr. Tim Uhl

The Week Ahead

Monday: Helena (office day)

Tuesday: Helena

Wednesday: Browning (De La Salle Blackfeet School)

Thursday: Browning (cont)

Friday: Helena; SonLight event in evening

Saturday: St. Mary's (Livingston) 100th Anniversary event

This week's travels: 600 miles

Last week's travels: 1,004 miles

This year's travels: 5,280

Upcoming Events

St. Labre Elementary WCEA Accreditation visit Oct 5-8

Marian classes: Wed, Oct 15 in Billings 12-3; Oct 16 10-1 in Great Falls; Oct 17 9-noon in Missoula. Principals need to send in their registration forms to Jean Saye.

St. Andrew WCEA Accreditation visit Oct 19-22.

Regional principal meetings in November: Nov 18th (Missoula), Nov 19 (Great Falls), Nov 20 (Billings). More details to come.

Extracurricular empowerment: Scott McLeod at TEDxDesMoines
New MBI Cut