Welcome to School Advancement
Welcome to School Advancement
Systems Thinking to Help Schools Form a Firm Financial Foundation
Questions about Advancement, Systems Thinking, or the ARMED Framework for your school?
Questions about Advancement, Systems Thinking, or the ARMED Framework for your school?
Email SchoolAdvancement
Connect with the School Advancement Group on Facebook
Connect with the School Advancement Group on Facebook
If you're affiliated with a faith-based school, tap/click "Request to join the Group" below!

Move Your Mindset From Fundraising to Development to Advancement

Linear Thinking is Process-Oriented; Systems Thinking is Systems-Oriented. Your school may have excellent results, but all its systems must be working toward excellence to be sustainable.
A tetrahedron is a commonly called a three-sided pyramid, even though it has four sides. When one side changes, the whole object must adjust to accommodate the change to maintain its shape.
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“The DREAM," which was the weekly eNewsletter, was sunsetted at the end of June 2021. Changes in the way Web sites function, as well as new rules regarding email, have made it impossible to continue publication after over 10 years of doing so in the educational vertical. The reason is that there is so much turnover in faith-based school leadership today that schools have become accustomed to using one's position as the email address (e.g., principal@nameofschool.org) rather than an email address with an identifying name. If someone subscribes with that type of email, and the next person in that position doesn't want to receive the publication because they didn't sign on for it and marks it as spam, it affects the ability to send future emails from the sending email address. Indeed, there is a real difference between "Unsubscribe" and marking an email as spam, and simply choosing the latter because it's the simplest thing to do has caused an unfortunate and unintended paradigm shift. You may wish to join the SchoolAdvancement Facebook Group to see articles the day after they're published on the site and connect with other development, advancement and administrative professionals in faith-based schools. Building the community is the best way to retain students in your school, and it's also the best way to retain members of the SchoolAdvancement community.
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By joining the private SchoolAdvancement Facebook Group, you’ll get alerts on your Facebook feed when articles are published to the site. Visit/click the link to apply to be admitted to the group, and be sure to indicate the school you're affiliated with!
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The Need For SchoolAdvancement

At this time in history, fatih-based schools have closed or merged due to rising costs and changing demographics. Schools simply cannot rely on traditional fiscal approaches to fund their ministries.

Conversely, some areas of the country have experienced growing populations, producing a desire for additional faith-based schools. Some of those populations do not have the financial means to pay for large construction projects, and growing communities are put in the same financial conundrum as those that are shrinking.

While school leaders grapple with the changes they're facing, a paradigm has begun to take shape. Isolated successes have been experienced in some areas of the country, while other dioceses, deaneries, parishes and their respective schools, as well as Christian and other faith-based schools, strategize to plan for the future.

Rather than continuing to “reinvent the wheel,” this site's goal is to provide guidance gleaned from schools which have experienced successes, accepting responsibility for achieving not just excellence, but sustainability. In a spirit of community, SchoolAdvancement shares "next" practices, proven strategies, failed experiments and suggestions regarding what to avoid along the path, and, interestingly, how some small "shifts" can have a significant positive impact on the future of a school. Though the curriculum of various faith-based schools may be different, the five elements of Advancement - Asset Management, Retention, Marketing, Enrollment and Development (The ARMED Framework) represent the “business" side of the mission and are essential for every school’s success.

While some school leaders and boards are beholden to the belief that “It’s all about the money,” others have said “It’s all about enrollment.” Actually, “It’s all about all of it!" Your school's customers will evaluate "the experience" of your school based on their expectations of excellence.

Download your FREE copy of "Understanding Advancement: A Systems Thinking Framework for Today's Faith-Based School!"

Watch this space for something new that's coming your way!

Recent Articles

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

About 5 years ago, a popular hotel chain was using that tune from The Clash as the soundtrack from their […]

The Advancement Director’s Schedule

In light of the articles on Advancement over the past couple of weeks, I thought this would be a good […]

Tell Them What They Already Know

Now isn’t that just about the dumbest thing you’ve ever heard? Now think about your kids, or if you haven’t […]

HOW Do I Do the Things I Need To Do?

As promised, this week’s installment speaks to another aspect of the “how” to handle Advancement. While last week’s article outlined […]

July: Market Your School’s Hourly Rate

There are two ways most schools post their tuition on their respective Web sites, and frankly, both ways can turn […]

And a Child Shall Lead Them…

…on a tour of your school!! Principals and other administrators usually provide the school tour to interested parents, since they […]

Move Your Mindset From Fundraising to Development to Advancement

Linear Thinking is Process-Oriented; Systems Thinking is Systems-Oriented. Your school may have excellent results, but all its systems must be working toward excellence to be sustainable.

Join the SchoolAdvancement Facebook Group

Visit this link to join!  You’ll receive newly-published article previews there and can comment on them in the Group rather than on the site!