Word-of-mouth still gets best results: principal
Maranatha Christian Academy in Windsor encourages attending families to spread the word about the school and the benefits of Christian education. The school has created information packages, which families can share with friends and contacts.
Satisfied parents telling their friends and contacts about the school is the most effective way to bring in new families, says principal Andrew Nunn.
He notes that when asked why they chose Maranatha, new families almost invariably respond that an attending family significantly directed their decision.
A huge part of making this strategy effective, Nunn adds, is ensuring that attending families are satisfied.
“Obviously insofar as existing parents are happy with what’s going on in school then that word of mouth becomes more effective,” Nunn adds. “If you have disenchanted parents that also gets out word of mouth.”
The school has been known to use more creative means of encouraging families to promote the school. Last fall the promotions committee performed a skit which included a list of key points about the school that parents could take and use in conversation with others.
The promotions committee also directed the creation of a promotional DVD, which is a four-minute clip showing various aspects of the school in action. It includes a brief commentary on the benefits of Christian education and the ethos of the school. Families can share the DVD with friends and churches may show it during services.
While Maranatha experienced a slight dip in enrollment over the last three years, numbers have stabilized this school year, according to Nunn.
“We’re happy we seemed to have turned that corner and trust that the slight increase will continue.”
The principal notes that it’s important for school leadership to remember that the school and it’s future ultimately belongs to God.
With that perspective, prayer is a significant activity in the school’s day-to-day and long-term decision-making and development, including its enrollment scenario.
“It’s not so much a juggling-with-numbers exercise as it is prayerfully seeking His direction and asking for His blessing,” says Nunn. “With (God’s blessing) we succeed. Without it, we can’t.”
To learn more about Maranatha Christian Academy, visit www.maranathachristian.ca.