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Advocating for Charter Schools. Strategies and Messaging. Advocacy Strategy. Audience 2011 Legislative Body League Legislative Survey Key Findings Effective Techniques Engaging in Action Alerts Personal interaction with legislators and other parents Effective Messaging Keywords

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advocating for charter schools

Advocating for Charter Schools

Strategies and Messaging

advocacy strategy
Advocacy Strategy
  • Audience
    • 2011 Legislative Body
    • League Legislative Survey Key Findings
  • Effective Techniques
    • Engaging in Action Alerts
    • Personal interaction with legislators and other parents
  • Effective Messaging
    • Keywords
    • Appealing Language
    • Targeted messaging for type of Audience
audience
Audience
  • 2011 Colorado General Assembly
    • House: 33 Republicans; 32 Democrats
    • Senate: 15 Republicans; 20 Democrats
  • Education Committees
    • House: 3 Republicans; 5 Democrats
    • Senate: 7 Republicans; 6 Democrats
audience4
Audience
  • 2010 Legislative survey and data collection
    • Knowledge of charter schools
    • Political affiliation
    • Voting histories
    • Endorsements
audience survey results
Audience – Survey Results
  • Areas of ambiguity:
    • Funding sources, admission practices and per-pupil revenues
audience survey results6
Audience – Survey Results
  • General knowledge of what charter schools are; less knowledge of charter school principles
audience survey results voting history
Audience – Survey Results/Voting History
  • Knowledge of charter schools may not relate to support
    • Nearly 60% showed “Little Support” but 54% showed a “Knowledge of Charter Schools.”
audience knowledge mapped
Audience – Knowledge Mapped

Senate results

House results

Green: Shows knowledge of charter schoolsRed: Shows gap in knowledge of charter schoolsBlue: Did not answer quantitative survey questions

effective techniques
Effective Techniques
  • Techniques
    • Build personal relationships with legislators (Direct Lobbying)
    • Grassroots advocacy (League Action Alerts)
    • Facilitating an exchange of information between advocates and policy makers (Be a Resource!)

Hoefer, 2000; Graziano, 2001; Rees, 2001

effective messaging
Effective Messaging
  • Keywords – Charter Schools offer:
    • Partnership between parents, teachers and students
    • Innovation coupled with accountability
    • “Achievement,” “Freedom,” “Learning”National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, 2010
effective messaging11
Effective Messaging
  • Words/Areas to Avoid
    • Waiting lists and lotteries
    • Statistics
    • “Autonomous,” “Control,” and “Cutting-Edge”

National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, 2010

effective messaging12
Effective Messaging
  • Appealing Phrases
    • “High-quality public charter schools are free”
    • “Demonstrate low-income and underserved populations can achieve at a high level”
    • “More likely to receive a diploma, attend college and score proficiently on a math or reading test”National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, 2010
messaging targeted at certain audiences
Messaging – Targeted at certain audiences
  • Republican voters/legislators
    • Use inspirational wording and emphasize:
      • Partnership between parents, teachers and students
      • Accountability
      • Charter schools do not charge tuition
      • We must improve our public education system

“Charter schools are demonstrating that low income-underserved children can achieve at high levels.”

messaging targeted at certain audiences14
Messaging – Targeted at certain audiences
  • Democratic voters/legislators
    • Emphasize:
      • Partnership between parents, teachers and students
      • Parental involvement
      • Improved student achievement
      • New teaching models

“Students attending charter schools are more likely to receive a diploma and attend college.”

messaging other issues
Messaging - Other Issues
  • Number of charter schools in a legislator’s district
    • Highlight number of schools and students affected by legislation
  • Number of endorsements
    • Focus on charter school principles beyond general facts about charter schools
questions

Questions?

Jill ConnerColorado League of Charter Schools

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