Survey Shows Important Changes in K-12 Communications

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The 2010 K12 Online Communications Survey, sponsored by Relatrix and COSPRA, highlights important changes in organizational reporting and adoption of online tools to improve school communications. The findings show a significant increase in the use of social media by districts, while district webmasters, as a dedicated position are declining and far fewer are reporting to the communications department than in previous years. The full report will be available on the Relatrix and COSPRA websites August 1st.

Relatrix, the leader in Online Contact Center solutions for the K-12 education market, announces highlights from the K-12 Online Communications Report during the National School Public Relations (NSPRA) 2011 seminar.

Relatrix and the Colorado School Public Relations Association (COSPRA), a non-profit organization serving school PR professionals in Colorado and Wyoming, announced the release of the annual K-12 Online Communications Report. The report is based on a nationwide survey of school district administrators. The survey is in its fifth year and includes findings about practices, perceptions and patterns of use of the Internet for non-instructional communications in public education.

The 2010 K-12 Report found dramatic movement in the use by districts on social media to share information and to collect feedback from the public. While this is only the second year the survey tracked the use of social media, it was clear from the respondents that this channel is becoming an important factor in their communication strategies.

There was a significant counter-trend in where district webmasters reported. The trend through last year was for more webmasters to report to the Communications Director. This year that percentage dropped from 52% to 35% of respondents with a large up-tick in districts answering they don’t know to whom the webmaster reported or don’t have a webmaster. This is in-line with funding-related organizational changes in many districts, and increased reliance on content management systems to allow de-centralized responsibility for website management.

“Our survey findings show a major upturn in 2010 in the implementation of tools and systems to improve communications. This was the second year we included questions about social media, and our data shows a large portion of school districts are embracing this method of communicating.” According to COSPRA President Christy McGee, “The research findings are valuable to our COSPRA members locally and to other school districts across the country. In today’s tough economic environment, online methods of communicating can help school PR professionals do more with fewer resources – including keeping parents, staff and the community well-informed.”

“Relatrix is pleased to continue its collaboration with COSPRA on this valuable research,” said Mark Franke, President of Relatrix. “We hope that these findings help support schools as they continue to deal with communication challenge and opportunities in the coming school year.”

The report for 2010, along with previous years will be available at the COSPRA website (http://www.cospra.org) or from Relatrix at (http://www.relatrix.com) starting August 1, 2011. Survey respondents will be receiving an early release version of the survey prior to that.

Relatrix is headquartered in Evergreen, CO with support and sales offices based in Texas and Virginia. To learn more about Relatrix’s Online Contact Center solutions visit http://www.relatrix.com and and follow our Tweets during the NSPRA conference.

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MARK FRANKE
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