Managing the transient student populations at international schools is a challenge for every admissions team. How many students are coming back, how many are leaving, and how many open places are available for new families?
Top 5 Tips for Managing Re-enrolment
Communication is key. Remind parents early and often, and at every opportunity. Yes, that initial e-mail or letter is useful, but parents should already know what’s coming. Monthly newsletters, re-enrolment announcements at parent meetings, and updates to your parent portal are all great ways to keep them reminded. An informed parent makes collecting the information that much easier!
2. Keep it simple
International school parents have a lot on their plates so making the re-enrolment process as simple as possible goes a long way. Short forms are great! Allow your parents to verify and , instead of asking them to fill it in again. Ease the by providing an online portal or step by step instructions for transferring money to the school’s account. Some schools have even moved to auto re-enrolment where no forms are required at all unless the child is withdrawing. The easier your process, the more responses you will get.
3. Move online
In the last few years, schools have moved online to make life easier for both parents and administrators. A simple online form is easier for parents to fill out and return, especially when they can access it from any device. Online re-enrolment also means that the admissions office can manage the process in a few simple clicks, instead of hours working with paper.
4. Provide incentives
Are calls and e-mails getting you nowhere? We have found that incentives are key! Tie re-enrolment responses to other school-to-home communication, such as student report cards and other records. If you provide the parents with more reasons to complete re-enrolment, their responses will be more timely.
5. Work together
Re-enrolment can be hard! However, it does not have to be overwhelming. We found our most efficient schools work across departments to get it all done. For example, Admissions follows up for the re-enrolment confirmation while the Business Office/Finance follows up for the deposit. Having both offices contact parents creates more urgency and keeps re-enrolment front and center.
Have other tips to share? Let us know!