Crisis Communication: What’s Your Plan?

Vol. 16 No. 9

advancement eletter Vol16 No9 crisisplan

Your school probably has a well-thought-out crisis plan in place to help you react should the unthinkable happen. But an often-overlooked aspect of a crisis plan is communication.

It’s important to have a plan in place so your team knows exactly how and what to communicate in different scenarios, such as the arrest of a student or employee or an incident on campus.

Your plan should define the people, systems, and tools your school uses to communicate both internally and externally during and after a crisis. It should define five key aspects of crisis communication.

  • What team will be involved in your crisis communication effort?
  • Who will be the spokesperson?
  • What communication systems will you use?
  • What should you include in your crisis communication tool kit?
  • Are you prepared to respond if a crisis occurs tomorrow?

Penny Rogers, IAP-L, ISM Consultant, recently shared her insight when it comes to crisis communication planning. We’re sharing one aspect of her advice here. Click on the video below to hear her recommendations in full.

Creating Your Crisis Communication Team

Your crisis communications team should include some or all of the following members:

  • School Head
  • Security Director
  • Communications Director
  • Assistant School Head
  • Division Head(s)
  • Technology Director
  • Board Chair
  • Facilities Director
  • Guidance or Health leaders
  • PR Consultant
  • Legal Counsel

These team members should meet at least once a year to discuss and refine your school’s response plan. They must consider any changing aspects of the school and prepare accordingly, write and update the crisis communications plan, and keep the plan confidential among the members of the team.

For more of Penny’s tips, watch the video below:

For more insight on admission and enrollment management trends—as well as development and marketing communications advice—consider attending ISM’s 2018 Advancement Academy. This weeklong deep dive into your school’s advancement initiatives will help you discover your school’s strengths and challenges with the aid of a dedicated mentor. Leave the Academy with a tailored action plan ready for immediate implementation once you return to campus.

ISM's Advancement Academy

Additional ISM resources:
The Source for Business and Operations Vol. 6 No. 6 Social Media: The Often Overlooked Element In Your School’s Crisis Plan
The Source for School Heads Vol. 10 No. 6 When (Not If) a Crisis Happens, Will You Be Ready?

Additional ISM resources for Gold members:
I&P Vol. 43 No. 5 The Whys and Hows of Implementing a Crisis Communication Plan

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