Start Planning Next Year’s Summer Program Now

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Private School News

Once you’ve successfully kicked off the school year, it’s time to turn your attention to the next big task. Believe it or not, that should be preparing for next year’s summer program.

The fall season is the perfect time to review your past year’s program, assess what’s working, and determine where you need to improve your offerings for next year. Prepare now for next summer.

The primary question every team should be able to answer: Is the summer program fully aligned with our school’s mission?

To answer this question, consider:

  • Is your program structure, location, staff, and equipment meeting your standards?
  • What feedback have you received from students, parents, and staff?
  • Are your marketing efforts bringing in mission-appropriate participants?
  • What other programs are available in your community? Is there a hole in the community’s offerings that you can fill?
  • Are you satisfied with your program’s bottom line?

Once the team has evaluated what’s working and what isn’t, set goals for next year. What does your school want to accomplish? Boost participation? Replace outdated offerings? Increase your program length or breadth? The Summer Program Director and School Head should work together to solidify these goals.

Once set, get everyone on the same page. The success of the summer program relies on the cooperation of many different administrators who understand the summer program goals. Each person should understand what they need to do to help achieve success.

The School Head appoints the Summer Program Director, empowers him or her to run and manage the program, and communicates the program’s value as an income generator and recruitment tool. The Business Manager is responsible for working with the Summer Program Director to develop and finalize the budget, arrange contracts, and support risk management and insurance. The Business Office also helps the Summer Program Director with accounting and facilities needs.

The Admission Director and Marketing Communications Director should share leads with the Summer Program Director. These Directors can help fill the summer program, as well as use the summer program as a recruitment opportunity for the school year. Finally, Division Directors can help find faculty members to support the summer program or assist with curriculum and evaluation, if necessary.

Set each position on the right path with your program goals in mind to ensure next year’s success. Take the time now to carefully design and manage the right summer program for your school, resulting in auxiliary income, an additional “pool” of potential students, and an opportunity to offer an additional service to your community.

When your school offers a quality summer program, it generates various benefits: a valued service to current parents, new recruitment opportunities, supplemental employment for your school’s faculty, a chance to consider innovative academic programs, and so much more! Learn how to offer a mission-appropriate summer program at your school during ISM’s workshop, Summer Program: An Asset to Your School from Oct. 18–21 or Nov. 1–4 in Wilmington, DE. Learn more here.

Additional ISM resources:
The Source for School Heads Vol. 12 No. 1 Raising the Bar on Your Summer Program
The Source for Business and Operations Vol. 4 No. 2 Managing Risk in Your Summer Program
The Source for Advancement Vol. 11 No. 2 Recruiting Students Through Your Summer Program

Additional ISM resources for Gold members:
I&P Vol. 39 No. 11 Hiring, Preparing, and Training Staff for Your Summer Program
I&P Vol. 42 No. 2 Paying Your Summer Program Director
I&P Vol. 38 No. 10 Strategies for Promoting Your Summer Program


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