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Articles by Nora Carr

How to include the community when making key school decisions

How to include the community when making key school decisions

Technology tools and services are helping school leaders engage key audiences in new and important ways, from starting conversations with constituents via social media to participatory budget processes that seek to get more community voices to the decision-making table....

Stakeholder and Community Relations
Smart phones require smart communication strategies

Smart phones require smart communication strategies

With as many as 49 percent of all U.S. adults using smart phones, according to Nielsen reports, it’s time to get smart about school communications as well.…

Social media trends should prompt a rethinking of school communications

Social media trends should prompt a rethinking of school communications

Websites are slowly taking a backseat to text messaging and micro-blogging tools like Twitter for breaking news, emergency messaging, and sharing other urgent information, writes award-winning eSN columnist…

Virtual schooling’s popularity challenges policy makers

Virtual schooling’s popularity challenges policy makers

With student enrollment increasing rapidly, virtual schooling is experiencing some growing pains. From high dropout rates to concerns about academic rigor, virtual schooling is generating a litany of…

How to engage parents online more effectively

How to engage parents online more effectively

Parenting is the toughest and most important role most adults will ever have. Yet, far too many feel ill equipped to handle the job. Others are simply too…

Using QR codes for school communications

Using QR codes for school communications

Quick Response (QR) codes—those black-and-white squares that look like a cross between supermarket bar codes and postage stamps—have real potential for school communications.…

Five tips for digital communication in the new year

Five tips for digital communication in the new year

With a new year approaching, it's a great opportunity to re-evaluate what’s working—and what’s not—in your classroom, school, or district communications program. Here are five tips to power…

FCC opens access to social media sites for e-Rate users

FCC opens access to social media sites for e-Rate users

Now that even the staid Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has loosened its tight rein on social media networks, it’s time for more educators to use these tools to…

Ten tips for using social media in school communications

With social media networks now ubiquitous, it’s time to shift the debate from whether it’s a good idea for educators to use this new medium to how to…

How schools can get better media coverage in the digital news ecosystem

According to a new study by the Brookings Institution, Americans want more news coverage of their public schools. But to improve the media’s coverage of public education, school…

How to fight back against devastating budget cuts

If educators are going to win back the hearts and minds of the public in support of public schools, they need to learn how to engage social media…

Recognizing the warning signs for teen bullying, suicide

Mainstream media outlets have coined a new term to describe the rash of student suicides committed in the wake of persistent school bullying and harassment: "bullycides."…

Can eBooks help bridge achievement gaps?

As more traditional book content goes digital, educators are left wondering whether technology will make achievement gaps even wider—or whether electronic books might act as a bridge for…

Demographic shifts require changes in school communication

Unprecedented demographic shifts in the U.S. are creating a communications gap between teachers, principals, and the students and families they serve, forcing educators to rethink their school communication…

How to avoid committing social media gaffes

With social media use nearly universal, school districts need to develop guidelines to help employees navigate this new terrain successfully. Here are some tips to avoid committing major…

Nora, APR, Fellow PRSA, is chief of staff for Guilford County Schools in Greensboro, North Carolina, where she oversees governmental relations, internal and external communications, special events, media relations, community relations, GCSTV 2 and volunteers and partnerships. GCS is the third largest school district in North Carolina serving more than 71,000 students at 120 schools. With approximately 10,000 employees, the district’s mission is to graduate responsible citizens prepared to succeed in higher education or the career of their choice. A sought after speaker and consultant, Nora also serves as a contributing editor on communications for the American School Board Journal and as a monthly columnist on using technology to enhance school communications foreSchool News. Accredited in school public relations, Nora was inducted in 2008 into the Public Relations Society of America’s College of Fellows, an honor given to only 455 of the association’s 22,000 members.

Nora lives in Greensboro, NC, and enjoys reading, swimming, singing, and spending time with her family, including grandson Braden. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in educational administration at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

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Using Data to Improve Student Achievement

While schools now measure their students’ progress more frequently throughout the year, using this information to target instruction more effectively still poses a challenge. Turning data into higher…

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