International students bring not only revenue to private schools, but an enhanced level of culture to the overall student experience. Over the past decade, international K–12 programs have seen significant growth throughout the U.S. Assisting K–12 schools with this growth are numerous International Student Broker (Agent) firms and independent consultants. Although schools don’t need to partner with brokers to enhance or initiate exchange student and international study programs, most of the schools ISM works with for international student insurance report using agents to help place students, along with other associated tasks. Through our insurance relationships, we have compiled the following five tips for working with an International Student Broker.
A common and quite costly mistake schools make is to base decisions on unreliable sources, from a small group of vocal parents who claim that “everyone” feels the same way, or national trends that may or may not apply to your school. The key to avoiding this mistake is to assume nothing. Costly examples include the assumption that families are leaving because of the cost of tuition or because you don’t have a swimming pool; that new families aren’t enrolling because the lower school entrance needs a million-dollar makeover; or that parents all want a Mandarin program (and should thus have one).
We all understand and appreciate the importance of faculty participation in the overall effectiveness a school’s various fundraisers and capital campaigns. It serves as a signal to other donors that the teachers believe so much in the school’s educational work that they’re willing to sacrifice their time and money to ensure it continues.
However, faculty solicitation requires a delicate touch. So this month, we’ll talk about four ways in which to sensitively ask your teachers and other staff members to contribute.
Do you remember your first day on the job? That moment when you were scared and excited and thrilled all at once at the possibilities that struck you? That moment of inspiration may fade as the realities of a tough job take root, but don’t worry—we’re here to help remind you why you chose this job in the first place.
When working on advertising materials and donor stories, sometimes a specific headline or case study piques your interest more than the others. However, when you show it to a parent representative you trust, they don’t react to it as strongly as you had hoped or anticipated—thus changing the course of your prospective marketing or advertising campaign.
This example illustrates the need to have quantitative data to back up your marketing decisions. You, as the administrator of a private school, are not (necessarily) your target audience; neither is every family with a school-aged student or every philanthropic business person in the neighborhood. To ensure the solicitation of mission-appropriate donors and prospective families, you must put yourself in your audience’s place while identifying (and acknowledging) personal bias.
Homeschooling is increasingly becoming a viable option for parents looking for alternatives to traditional classroom learning. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), for example, showed a 54% increase in the practice from 2002 to 2012 (1), and stories like the wunderkind twelve-year-olds starting their engineering degrees at Cornell University (2) inspire other families looking to nurture their gifted children.
However, rather than looking at homeschooling programs as competition for your private school, look to them as you would any other “feeder school”—as an opportunity to expand the pool of prospective students. This month, let’s discuss the ways in which you can leverage the unique opportunity of homeschooled students.
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