Dealing with an attack on your school by parents using social media…

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If you find yourself being openly attacked by parents on Facebook, Twitter, Mumsnet or one of the other myriad social media platforms, this guide may help. Fell free to copy it, download it, or pass it on to other members of your team…

Extract from Surviving an attack on Social Networking Sites

Another excellent school social media policy (v 2.0)…

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Here is a second example of a School Social Media Policy. This one is much more detailed, and provides more explanatory text. We will be uploading other school marketing policies from time to time. Please feel free to download it, pass it on, and give credit to Mustard Training Ltd.

Example of a Social Networking Policy (V 2.0)

An example of a Photographic Consent Form for parents

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Here is an example of a Photographic Consent Form for parents. This is ideal for use by schools wanting to use Social Media to communicate with parents. It is valid for one year (best practice is to do your consent forms at least every 12 months), and includes the phrase : “Please inform us immediately if you (or your child’s) personal circumstances change and you want to alter this consent form.” Please feel free to download it, pass it on, and give credit to Mustard Training Ltd.

Example Photographic Consent Form

Crisis? What crisis?

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I was really pleased to meet someone on the Manchester course who had bought my book on school reputation management. Never a week goes by without a school hitting the headlines – often for the wrong reasons. It happened to one of my regular clients – Sir John Cass’s Foundation and Red Coat Church of England Secondary School – last year. You will have read about it in your daily newspaper and seen it on national TV.

Most schools take the attitude that it “will never happen to us.” But, of course, it does. Nearly a third of my book is devoted to dealing with threats to a school’s reputation:

  • Where to get support in a PR crisis;
  • How to prepare for managing a PR crisis;
  • What to communicate, to whom and how;
  • How to rehearse who does what.

There are lots of practical tools and templates to help you:

  • Write a press release;
  • Manage a crisis one step at a time;
  • Put together a crisis statement.

Find more information about my book here

 

How to use Inset Days to get to Primary School pupils

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One of my favourite clients is a large secondary school in Kent. I’ve been working with the school for a few years now. Their Head came on one of my marketing courses in Maidstone in 2012. Since then I’ve delivered a marketing audit for them, and helped with their branding, prospectus and website.

The school wants to be the 1st choice for parents in the area, and they have become really “savvy” at pupil recruitment. One of the most successful elements of their marketing campaign has been their work with half a dozen core feeder primaries within easy travel distance. They reckon the best way to show their school to prospective pupils and parents is to get them through the doors at the age of 7, 8, 9 and 10. In September last year they identified the dates for all of their core feeder primary school Inset Days. Inset Days are a real pain in the neck for working primary school parents because they have to take a day off work, or organise childcare. My client has created special Activity Days aimed at primary school pupils to coincide with those Inset Days. They have held a “Dance Day” and a “Textiles Day” so far.

These activity days have proved to be the most successful events they have ever created for prospective pupils. More popular in fact than their Open Day! Attendance has been astonishingly high, and parental feedback has been very positive. Whether this translates into 1st Choices in due course remains to be seen, but the theory is sound. You have a much greater chance of recruiting a pupil who has been through your doors a couple of times than someone who has never visited you.

Still a great teaching blog

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I was really pleased to read that Kristian Still had been appointed Vice Principal for Teaching and Learning at The Wellington Academy, near Tidworth. I went to school there for five years in the 1970s, when it was plain old Tidworth Down Secondary Modern School. The school has now been re-built and looks – from the outside at least – amazing!

Kristian’s weekly teaching blog (http://www.kristianstill.co.uk/wordpress/) is one of the best I’ve read. I first met him when he was Assistant Principal at Hamble Community Sports College. In 2011 Kristian attended one of my school marketing courses in Southampton . Afterwards he put his thoughts into words on his blog. You can still read what he learned

Thanks for the kind words Kristian, and keep on doing what you’re doing!