Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Preparing for bond issue, Neosho R-5 hires public relations director

Beware Neosho!

After failing twice to pass bond issues to build a new junior high school, the Neosho R-5 Board of Education has decided to put it on the ballot for a third time in April and to help it pass, it has decided to hire a full time public relations director.

My initial reaction after reading the Neosho Daily News article on the hiring is worry for the school district.

Of course, the district does not have to become all about the spin as the Joplin R-8 School District has become since it began adding layers of people who have little to do with education and everything to do with projecting the image, despite all evidence to the contrary, of a school district that has had one success after another.

Neosho's new p.r. director, Megan Spangler, is quoted on her battle plan:

Just making sure it's (information) out there and trying to utilize every possible vessel we have, and to get their good word out thee and to make sure that everyone that wants to be informed and even ones that don't want to be informed are informed, because that I think is your first matter of business.

I worry when we start spending more and more taxpayer money on trying to sell a positive image of school districts. The best way to do that is for school board members and administrators to listen to their constituents and not just those who are connected to the local power brokers.

When you develop that kind of relationship with the community, you don't need to hire someone to sell your image.


Anonymous said...

Did Dr. Huff add a new career to his resume?

Anonymous said...

When your product is good you don't need any help in selling it. This is prime example of having a bad product that needs a slick salesperson to peddle it.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Turner,

I'm not familiar with your blog and just happened to run across it this morning. You have some of the facts correct in your post, but have misrepresented the situation in Neosho. The board and the senior administrators didn't want to put a bond issue on the ballot in Neosho for a couple of years after the past two defeats at the ballot box. However, the teachers at the jr. high felt the district could not wait that long. The middle school and jr. high currently have trailer surrounding both of their buildings due to over crowding at both locations. The teachers along with several students put together a proposal and visited every school in the district and met with as many teachers as possible to communicate the urgent need for more space. The teachers led the effort to put the bond issue back on the ballot, not a PR director. This effort to put the bond issue on the ballot began in the fall, before the district ever began to interview for the PR position. Here is a link to the article if you are interested in gathering more information about this topic. http://www.neoshodailynews.com/article/20141215/News/141219278/?Start=1