Stretching Back-to-School Media Coverage to Boost Community Support
Staggered start dates for Texas schools this year gave news media more opportunities than ever to share interesting stories about bold efforts to educate and care for thousands of children across the state.
School districts used the excitement over back to school to drive their messages, reinforcing their commitments to keep students and staff safe, to take care of taxpayer dollars, and to educate every kid in the best ways possible in preparation for college and future jobs.
Here are a few of our favorites:
Houston Independent School District invited an ABC 13 reporter to shadow a new teacher’s first day of school and first introduced the teacher while covering HISD’s new teacher orientation. HISD welcomed more than 1,500 new teachers this school year, and the orientation felt more like a pep rally as the new hires got “pumped” for their first year of teaching, ABC 13 explained.
McKinney’s Prosper ISD invited FOX 4 to join teachers as they went door to door visiting hundreds of homes to welcome incoming sixth graders. “I feel like they're just trying to make her feel comfortable. It's hard to go into a new school,” said one parent, who took off a half day at work to be home for the visit and see her daughter get a T-shirt from her new teachers. FOX 4 reports, “It’s the same school district whose superintendent writes a note to each graduating senior, and also leaves personal notes on classroom dry erase boards.”
YES Prep Public Schools kicked off the new school year with a brand-new campus transformed from a hospital building for only $11.7 million after a short 6 months of construction. KPRC Local 2 and other Houston media had to see it for themselves.
Another new school in Dallas ISD is introducing a bold, new way to prepare students for college and careers. The district’s new City Lab High School turns the city of Dallas into its own interactive learning lab, WFAA reports. The school’s first class of ninth-grade “pioneers” will hit the streets to study architecture, urban planning, public policy, development and more issues and subjects that are part of making a city run.
Back-to-school safety was a focus in Corpus Christi ISD, where school police officers completed extensive active shooter training ahead of the new school year, and safety coverage extended to new security upgrades on several campuses.
The fearless leaders in North Texas’ Burleson ISD showed they love their jobs and will stop at nothing to give students the education “they deserve.” Superintendent Bret Jimerson's back-to-school music video went viral last year, and now he's back with the help of principals in a Bruno Mars pop parody video, which was covered by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
News reporters dedicate time to covering what matters to their viewers and readers, such as what’s new for back-to-school. News coverage of schools doesn’t have to be seasonal, though. Build on the momentum from your community’s excitement to continue driving your message year-round.
As students, parents, legislators and other taxpayers hear about limited education funds, multi-million dollar bonds, upcoming A-F ratings and other issues that media will cover, they also want to hear and see all the great people and things happening in schools to care for and educate our children. They want to support your efforts, so let’s show them many more reasons to do so. If we can help, contact us anytime.
Cheers to your best school year yet!
Did your district have an awesome back-to-school story or series of stories we missed? Please let us know! We’d love to share it!