The Source

Source Header Image
Source Header Image

Stay current with the latest private-independent school news.

What are the latest trends impacting private-independent school enrollment? How can you be the most effective in your role as an administrator? How can you help your school meet its mission and best serve your students?

Sign up to receive The Source, a free weekly newsletter from ISM.

We cover such topics as how to communicate with your constituencies, work with your fellow school leaders, leverage new technology trends, utilize recommended reading and resources, implement new strategies—all to better serve your school's mission. 

Join more than 30,000 private-independent school administrators and have The Source delivered right to your inbox.


See articles for School Heads, Business & Operations, Advancement, Academic Leadership, and Trustees, in addition to Private School News.

You Are NOT Your Target Market: Three Steps to More Effective Communications

Advancement ● March 28, 2021

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.

Read More

How to Find (and Manage) Agents for Your International Student Program

International Student Programs ● March 28, 2021

Today we’re sharing an article that was originally published on International Circle, a community that provides content and coaching for international student program managers. If you want to learn more about building a stellar international student program, email

Read More

Ten Jobs for Classroom Helpers, Even in a Blended Model

Academic Leadership ● March 21, 2021

It is increasingly difficult to predict what students’ future needs will be as we live in an era of hyperchange. Our overall response to this educational dilemma—exacerbated by remote learning during a pandemic has been to "cover" everything. We try to do this despite evidence students retain a smal...

Read More

Forget Morning Coffee—Growth Coaching Is Your New Perfect Blend

School Leadership ● March 21, 2021

Academic success is not measured solely by test scores and report cards. To get the full picture of a child’s development, you take into account the entire student experience. Teachers go through a similar assessment. Quantitative data is measured via an evaluation process, while qualitative information is revealed—and nurtured—through a comprehensive growth plan.

Read More

Three Cyberthreats to Your School and Smart Solutions

Business and Operations ● March 21, 2021

Schools have faced cybersecurity risks for some time now, and cyberattacks have increased significantly during the pandemic. Even long after COVID-19 is behind us, educational institutions will remain vulnerable because they are online—as schools expand their online presence, criminal activity will become more threatening. Avoiding cyberthreats is essential.

Read More

Do Schools Need to ‘Catch Kids Up’ After COVID?

School Heads ● March 14, 2021

As education thought leaders, we have observed with interest recent debates about how to “catch kids up” from their “academic learning loss” after the COVID-19 pandemic ends. We certainly agree students have missed out on powerful and lasting learning from hands-on social activities that have been drastically modified or canceled altogether over the last year.

Read More

Five Signs Your School’s Faculty Evaluation Isn’t Working

Academic Leadership ● March 14, 2021

A yearly faculty evaluation is not like a walk in the park—whether you’re the academic leader implementing it or the teacher on the receiving end. When properly constructed and enacted, however, a comprehensive faculty development framework that includes an evaluation piece can improve staff culture, reduce legal risks, and bolster school enrollment.

Read More

Go Beyond Getting a ‘Yes’ From Parents Who Apply for Admittance

Enrollment Management ● March 7, 2021

Marketing your independent school is a never-ending process, and much of it has to do with your enrollment cycle. Whether you are targeting prospective students, bringing accepted students into your community, or encouraging existing students to re-enroll, your work is never done. With a solid enrollment cycle, you can ensure a strong institution.

Read More