Congratulations to Racine Unified School District for being awarded the NSPRA’s Gold Medallion Award in recognition of outstanding educational public relations programs.
Closing a school building or changing attendance zones can bring out fierce opposition in a school community. In 2017-18, Racine Unified School District proposed both and then some as part of a major middle school transformation set for 2018-19. Through research-informed communication strategies and tactics, the “My School. My Choice.” campaign successfully turned potential opponents into leaders and supporters of RUSD’s new concept for its boundary and choice middle schools.
RUSD’s journey of transformation was prompted by challenges such as declining enrollment, inefficient use of facilities and negative perceptions of its middle schools. The district conducted research to determine what its families wanted — more choices and opportunities, safe and engaging learning environments, challenging curriculum to prepare students for college or careers — and what its middle schools needed to meet those desires.