New Ways of Doing School are a Necessity

Independent School leaders are taking a hard look at their curriculum and education offerings and asking themselves if they are doing everything they can to prepare students for a future workforce that will look very different than it does today.

One of the biggest takeaways from the 2019 Independent Schools of the Central States’ (ISACS) Annual Conference, was the impressive way that organizations like ISACS and the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) are helping schools navigate this evolution of education.

Similarly, many schools know they must evolve their marketing strategies to remain relevant.

EG was a President’s level sponsor of the conference, which gave Bridget Bear and I an opportunity to talk to many school leaders who want to incorporate a digital media strategy into their current efforts but don’t know where to begin.

One Head of School of a large K-12 school told us they still rely on a marketing plan that is geared toward traditional tactics and while they have dipped their toes into digital advertising, they know they must do more in order to reach prospective families. This was a common problem repeated by those who stopped by our booth.

Conference speakers also shed light on issues that will impact marketing strategies. For example, one of the most interesting sessions we attended explained how the shrinking birthrate is fueling competition for a smaller pool of students.

Also discussed was the effect of generational change on school marketing and admissions.
Parents currently looking at schools for their children are largely millennials and xennials. These younger parents have an entirely different criteria when weighing school options. Parents are no longer shopping for a specific school. They are, instead, looking for the best experience for their child. They are also evaluating options, not in newspapers and magazines and billboards, but where they spend most of their time—online.

We left the conference inspired and heartened by how enthusiastic school leaders are about embracing new realities and evolving to better connect with families and educate students for the future.