AASA, NSPRA Continue Leadership in School Communication Program
November 08, 2023
Third Cohort to Kick Off at AASA’s 2024 National Conference in Education in San Diego
Alexandria, Va. – Nov. 8, 2023 – AASA, The School Superintendents Association, and the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA) are excited to launch a new cohort of the 2024 Leadership in School Communication Program, a professional development initiative to build leadership and communications skills in school districts across the country.
“During the past four years, school system leaders have come to better understand the value of their district’s communications efforts, as well as the power of the partnership between superintendents and communication professionals.”
Today’s announcement comes at a time when the roles and responsibilities of school communications professionals are evolving, and that the value of a school communicator is embraced more than ever before, according to NSPRA’s Profile of a School Communicator report released last month.
The Leadership in School Communication Program is part of AASA’s Leadership Network, the largest, most diverse network of superintendents in America. As the professional learning arm of AASA, the Leadership Network drives superintendent success, innovation and growth, while shaping the future of public education and preparing students for what’s next.
“Effective communication is critical to a school district’s success in today’s educational landscape, which is why AASA is honored to partner with Barbara Hunter and her team at NSPRA on this powerful program,” said David R. Schuler, AASA executive director. “Public relations and communications professionals working in our nation’s school systems are crucial in helping their districts shape the narrative and foster positive engagement within their respective communities.”
“The relationship between a superintendent and a director of communications is critical to the success of a school district. Done correctly, they build trust and partnership within the entire school community,” said Nick Polyak, superintendent, Leyden Community High School District #212 in Franklin Park, Ill. “The Leadership in School Communication Program can be so beneficial for any district.” Polyak and Karen Geddeis, Leyden’s director of communications, participated in the program’s inaugural cohort.
“Public relations and communications professionals working in our nation’s school systems are crucial in helping their districts shape the narrative and foster positive engagement within their respective communities.”
This program explores the following modules, moving school districts forward in the complex area of communication.
- Partnering on a Comprehensive Communication Strategy | February 14, 2024 at the AASA National Conference in Education in San Diego, Calif.
- Is Your District Brand Telling the Right Story? | March 22, 2024, Virtual
- Exploring the Power of Generative AI Tools to Enhance Internal Communications | April 26, 2024, Virtual
- Leading and Communicating in Polarized Times | May 10, 2024, Virtual
- The PR-HR Connection: Staff Recruitment and Retention | June 21, 2024, Virtual
- Media Relations Amid a Crisis: Cybersecurity | July 13, 2024, at the NSPRA Seminar in Seattle, Wash.
Sondra Whalen, director of student programs and communications with New York’s Vernon Verona Sherrill Central School District, participated in the 2023 cohort. “The Leadership in School Communication Program was, by far, the best professional development that I enjoyed this year. It gave real world, hands-on examples of not only how to become a better PR professional, but how to anticipate and navigate the difficult issues that face our districts every single day.”
For more information about the Leadership in School Communication Program, visit the AASA website. Click to view the photo gallery from the program’s 2023 in-person module, held at NSPRA’s 2023 National Seminar in St. Louis, Mo.
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to equitable access for all students to the highest quality public education. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.
As the leader in school communication, NSPRA serves more than 2,800 members who work primarily as communication directors in public school districts and education organizations throughout the United States and Canada. NSPRA provides high quality professional development programming through on-demand learning, an annual National Seminar, webinars, online forums and resources. For more information, visit NSPRA’s website at nspra.org.