Research & Reports

ISM's Research and Reports
ISM's Research and Reports

Develop strategies based on sound research and analysis germane to private schools.

ISM’s continuous research is at the core of our theory, workshops, and consultations, and is the driving force behind Ideas & Perspectives and our other publications. We analyze our own survey and report information, and routinely peruse statistics and data developed by the government and other educational organizations.

ISM's goal is to provide various resources of relevance to private schools, sharing information and advice to help them prosper. 


See ISM's latest reports, white papers, and articles.

Disaster Recovery Procedures

Report ● August 30, 2017

Dealing with a disaster, natural or otherwise, can be some of the most difficult work you do as a school administrator. You must enact a timely response, working quickly to provide emotional support as needed, establishing a plan to move forward, and keeping open lines of communication with students, parents, faculty, and staff. Below are suggestions for how your private-independent school can navigate the disaster recovery process, as well as administrative actions and position-specific duties you may want to consider. We hope that you are able to use this advice to get your school up and running as soon as possible, providing a safe haven for your students and a positive place for your community.

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Effects of Tuition Increases on Enrollment Demand

Whitepaper ● March 3, 2017

Independent School Management (ISM), Measuring Success, and the National Business Officers Association (NBOA) have harnessed the power of collaboration to renew a study and methodology originally undertaken in 2006 by Measuring Success and repeated in 2011 by Measuring Success with ISM. These studies suggested that there was no relationship between tuition increases and enrollment; this has been a help to many schools. Some schools, however, were concerned that the results of these studies did not examine the nuanced measures of enrollment, did not sufficiently reflect their individual circumstances, or that, after five years since the last study, the market had changed. To continue to address this important question, the same three leading organizations have worked together to expand the number and type of schools participating in a research-based study that once again addresses the important question, “Is there a relationship between enrollment in an independent school and changes in tuition?”

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Full Steam Ahead Part 3: What Does ‘Sustainability’ Really Mean?

Whitepaper ● September 12, 2014

In two previous white papers, ISM discussed whether the recent recession and subsequent recovery has impacted private-independent school enrollments. Despite data from ISM's recent parent reenrollment surveys and three tuition elasticity studies (all suggesting that the enrollment intentions of parents remains strong and that tuition and enrollment are not correlated), many school leaders continue to question independent school sustainability. This report focuses on five sustainability concerns that ISM most frequently hears and addresses each in turn. The conclusion is that hysteria over independent school sustainability is not warranted.

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Research Outcomes: The ISM Student Experience Study (SES) 2010-11

Report ● January 3, 2012

  Released January 2012. The ISM International Model Schools Project ran for six years, from 1989 to 1995, and entailed ISM onsite data collection expeditions (usually three per year) to eight to nine private-independent schools annually. The project focused upon relevant factors in stu...

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