Marketing for Adventist School Leaders


"Marketing" is not just advertising. "Marketing" is choosing who we want to be and then becoming that so authentically that engaged consumers will be our most effective advocates.


How to Put the Parents First

When parents know you are on their side—unconditionally—they will fall over themselves to help you do your job with their kids.  Your best marketing tool is "friendship" with parents.

Call: Talk to as many parents as possible each week.  Compliment them on something positive about their kids.

E-mail: Send an e-mail the parents will love to receive. Praise their child on something specific about their relationships with other students.

Greet: When they bring the kids to school, or take them home. Be there to greet, talk, and maintain friendships. 

Assign: Make sure each teacher is sending detailed assignment booklets home regularly so the parents are sure what's expected and confirm how their children are doing.


Speak: Call each child by name as often as possible. They'll tell the folks they like you 'cause you like them.

Ask: "How are we doing?" It's a good starter question and will often open the door to a significant discussion about school.

Invite: Plan event, parties, presentations, reports, anything that will get parents into the school.



Issue 2009:4

Rss-icon-9 Subscribe (RSS 2.0)

About the Author

Dick Duerksen is Assistant to the President of Maranatha Volunteeers International where he serves as Storyteller. He is also Creative Consultant to the NAD Office of Education. Dick has worked within the Seventh-day Adventist church as a pastor, administrator, editor, planner and consultant for creative ministry.


1 Assign Classwork

30 min/week listening to kids read
Your job will be easier if the parents feel safe with the teachers. They're NOT the enemy. They ARE your most valuable supporters. Assure them they're needed.


2 Card the Parents

Geve 'em OPEN Library Cards
Students are usualy able to check out only three books.  Give the parents an UNLIMITED card.  Get parents into the library and meaningful talk will follow.


3 Celebrate Jelly Beans
April 22 is National Jelly Bean Day.  Hold a Parent/Student party that afternoon just to get the parents into your classrooms. Do something every month to keep your parent friendships alive.


4 Celebrate Literature

YouTube, iTunes Genius, kid's books
Have teachers host an iTunes Sunday, a YouTube eve, and kid's book read-ins. Be known as the place for fun and friends. Read "How Dinosaurs Say Good-night."


5 Do Their Homework

Keep the parents a month ahead
Prepare the homework assignments and pages at least a month ahead. Bind them in a booklet and send a copy home to the folks. They'll respect you more if they know you're ahead.  And they'll help the kids keep up!