Thursday, December 9, 2010

Take Control of Your Public Relations

Upon becoming Principal of New Milford High School in June of 2007 I made it one of my primary goals to work hard at sharing with my stakeholders all of the accomplishments centered around teaching and learning occurring on a routine basis.  As Principal I was aware of these things, but I was pretty sure that the majority of the educational community was not.  Combine this with the fact the the local media is finicky when it comes to reporting on the many positives occurring at any school for that matter I came to the decision that it was up to me to take control of our public relations.
It was at this point that I created the monthly Principal's Report that can be viewed on the main page of our website.  Even though it is simplistic from an aesthetic standpoint, this document is a powerhouse when it comes to the depth of information that it contains.  Then social media came into my life.  My immersion in Twitter allowed me to come to the realization that I could take my public relations plan to a whole new level.  As I learned about other social media tools I began to diversify the types of information shared and how it was disseminated.  The public relations plan for NMHS now looks like this:

  • Principal's Report: Monthly summary of achievements and advancements that have a positive impact on teacher, learning, and school culture.
  • Twitter (@NewMilfordHS): Daily updates on news, events, student achievements, staff innovations, etc.  It is also another medium to distribute the Principal's Report.
  • NMHS Facebook Page: Serves the same purpose as the HS Twitter account, but this tool has much more influence as many more students, parents, and alumni utilize Facebook on a daily basis.
  • Flickr: Share and showcase students, staff, and events through pictures.
  • YouTube and Vimeo: Share and showcase students, staff, and events through video.
  • My Blog: I just love sharing in detail student and staff accomplishments.  My community also enjoys reading NMHS student reflections when they guest blog on A Principal's Reflections.
How much does all of this cost me?  The answer is ZERO!!!!  Isn't it time to take control of your public relations?  If you do I can assure you that there will be a greater sense of pride in your building and respect for the work being done on a daily basis.  


  1. Thanks for the great modeling Eric! As always, I will stealing some of your ideas!

  2. Thank you for sharing these ideas. I am working on a similar goal (@yofhs) and these methods will help me out, a great deal.

  3. How much time does this investment cost? Note I used the term 'investment'. I think it's well worth it, but I'd like to count the costs beforehand, so I don't start something I need to quit.

  4. What about the risks of exposing students on social media. Do you have the permission of parents? students.

  5. Yes, we have permission from both stakeholder groups.