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High-Frequency Communications with Staff

Take a proactive approach and establish multiple communication channels

Overview

As a new Superintendent navigating school reopening during the pandemic, Dr. Tina Owen-Moore needed to establish consistent, proactive means of communication with stakeholders across the School District of Cudahy.

“I realized, too, with all of that fear that I needed to personally be communicating and listening.” - Dr. Tina Owen-Moore, Superintendent, Cudahy Schools

Approach

To build consistency, understanding, and trust with her team, school board, and community members, Owen-Moore shifted from her “responsive” communications stance to a very proactive one, establishing a variety of regular touch points for engagement. These included:

  • Staff-wide, weekly video meetings where Owen-Moore shared status updates about reopening, publicly answered questions raised across the week, and responded to staff in an open question-and-answer format

  • Weekly emails to the community sharing information about reopening, community transmission, and responses to submitted concerns

  • Weekly standing meetings with individual members of the Cudahy School Board

  • Regular meetings with union representatives to share information and respond to concerns and feedback

While each of these communication channels was critical during the crisis of the pandemic, Owen-Moore has adopted them as a consistent practice, moving to a monthly video cadence. She reflected on the value of this approach as a way to tackle ongoing challenges of leadership and change management, explicitly noting the need for “consistency, being open to change, but change that improves on what we're doing, like open to ideas, not just not to push back.”


This strategy is a part of TLA's Hop, Skip, Leapfrog release, which explores the concrete ways in which schools and systems pursued student-centered innovation during COVID-19. Explore the full guide to find additional strategies, insights, and resources.


Strategy Resources


Communicating about Reopening Measures with Families Toolkit

This practitioner toolkit from the Parabola Project developed in partnership with Learning Heroes and Edge... Learn More

Communications Planning for Innovation in Education

Education Elements and The Learning Accelerator partnered to create this communications guide which includes a... Learn More