Leadership in School Communications Program

Moving your district forward with effective communication.

Leadership in School Communication Program

Clear and proactive communication about public education has never been more important than today, and it begins at the top with the district superintendent and communications team. This program will build your leadership and communication skills so you can use effective strategies and best practices, identify areas of growth for continuous improvement and create a roadmap for moving your school district forward in the complex area of communication. 

This is a hybrid course, consisting of two in-person modules and four virtual modules. Participants are responsible for their own travel and accommodation expenses associated with each in-person module.

Participants may register for the entire series or register for individual modules. Please see the Program Dates and Details below for additional information and registration options.

Program Dates and Details

Registration will open soon for the 2024 program year!

Sign-up for Updates


Partnering on a Comprehensive Communication Strategy Is Your District Brand Telling the Right Story? Exploring the Power of Generative AI Tools to Enhance Internal Communications Leading and Communicating in Polarized Times The PR-HR Connection: Staff Recruitment and Retention Media Relations Amid a Crisis: Cybersecurity

Partnering on a Comprehensive Communication Strategy

Using the Rubrics of Practice and Suggested Measures for School Communications published by the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA), participants will begin to understand the elements of creating a comprehensive communication program. These elements include supporting board policies, training for cabinet-level staff, creating a communication plan based in research, social media and branding. Participants will also see the importance of aligning the communication program with the district's strategic plan. Examples of high performing superintendent-communications director teams will be shared as well as success strategies for superintendents in small districts without the capacity to add communications staff.

February 14, 2024  |  1:00pm-5:00pm PT  |  In-Person, San Diego, Prior to NCE 2024

Is Your District Brand Telling the Right Story? 

A district brand is more than just a logo. The brand is also what people are saying about the district and can either “sell” it well, or “sink” it before you’ve had the chance to react. Learn best practices for creating and communicating a brand that is authentic, trustworthy and reflective of your goals and mission.


March 22, 2024  |  12:00pm ET  |  Virtual

Exploring the Power of Generative AI Tools to Enhance Internal Communications 

Generative AI tools such as ChatGPT have the power to increase internal communications creativity and efficiency. In this session, we’ll show examples of how to use the tool in speech writing, job descriptions and other messaging. Further, we’ll explore AI’s ethical dilemmas including factual errors, bias and transparency. A review of practices and policies will help you move your district forward in embracing this technology.

April 26, 2024  |  12:00pm ET  |  Virtual

Leading and Communicating in Polarized Times

Community divides seem to be growing more frequent and intense around book bans, transgender policies and DEI initiatives. How can you bridge those divides in authentic ways to build back trust and get people to gain a better understanding of each other’s viewpoints? You will learn strategies to structure those conversations and turn down the heat on polarizing issues.

May 31, 2024  |  12:00pm ET  |  Virtual

The PR-HR Connection: Staff Recruitment and Retention

Finding the right staff for the right positions – and retaining them – in districts is always a team effort. Being strategic in these efforts is critical to success. Latest generational and workplace data indicates the tried and true use of “jeans days” aren’t the way to impress potential or current staff; districts must move beyond pizza on PD days to ensure staff feel valued. Participants will learn from those who have built strong cross-department partnerships resulting in staff who enjoy their work while giving them space to voice concerns and have them addressed.

June 21, 2024  |  12:00pm ET  |  Virtual

Media Relations Amid a Crisis: Cybersecurity

Both superintendents and communications professionals have a responsibility to be prepared for the unexpected. Cybersecurity issues have quickly risen to the top of district leadership concerns. Creating the foundation for your district to react appropriately to this type of crisis – and others – will ensure your families, students, and staff have the information, resources and skills they need throughout the stages of a crisis. You’ll get hands-on media training from former reporters and practice the skill of bridging from a reporter’s question to your message.

July 13, 2024  |  1:00pm - 5:00pm PT  |  In-Person, Seattle, NSPRA Seminar


*Participants are responsible for their own travel and accommodation expenses. If you are unable to attend the in-person modules, slide decks, contact information for speakers and a synopsis of the day's events will be shared with those who have registered.

Who should participate?
This program will bring together superintendents and critical communications team members from school districts around the country. Participants are encouraged to attend as a team of two (one superintendent and one communications team member), but individuals can also benefit. 
What will I learn?
This program series will feature (6) six learning modules each focused on a critical area of communication leadership. New content and speakers have been secured for the 2024 program year! Previous program participants are strongly encouraged to register to refresh their skillset and stay on top of the latest trends in effective communications. 



February 14 to July 13, 2024

Please see 'Program Dates and Details' section for additional information. Registration will open soon for the 2024 program year!


  • Meghan Moran

    Senior Director, Membership & Marketing

    AASA, The School Superintendents Association



  • Melissa McConnell

    Manager of Professional Development and Member Services

    National School Public Relations Association


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