An online course for independent school communications

An online course for independent school communications



Tell your story better

Improve admissions and fundraising

Connect your community

Launching Autumn 2019


Why do we need this course?

You, like almost all of your counterparts in the independent school world, are facing increased pressures on admissions and fundraising. Simultaneously, internal constituents — parents, faculty, alumni, and students themselves — are demanding more information, more transparency, and more engagement than ever before.

To boost enrollment, strengthen our fundraising, and keep our communities engaged — and to do it all within our current resource constraints — we must find new ways to communicate.

Through Constellation, you’ll learn:

  • practical, on-the-ground steps you can take to improve your communications with both internal and external audiences;

  • new paradigms that will help you adapt to changing demands from your community;

  • strategies for partnering with other members of your school community to effect more substantial change.



How will the course be structured?

When you enroll in Constellation, you will have access to a guided series of articles, short videos, worksheets, and exercises. As much as possible, you’ll be doing and practicing, not just reading or listening.

You can approach these projects individually or with your team, and you can proceed at your own pace. We’re trying to shift an entire culture of communications, so while the bulk of the course will focus on immediate, practical steps you can take, the theories provided should be able to guide your work for years to come.

Each registration comes with a 90-minute personal consultation (via phone or video conference) to help with evaluation or implementation.

What topics will we cover?

We’ll look at a range of communications questions, from design and writing to technology and staffing, and we’ll explore how various offices can work together more effectively in this work. Some of the specific questions we’ll address include:

  • What are the right social media platforms to be on?

  • Are print magazines worth the cost and energy?

  • How can parents become better ambassadors for schools?

  • What are the best ways to engage alumni (or past parents, or faculty)?

  • Is market research for admissions worth the time and expense?

  • When — if ever — is the right time to redo a logo or brand?

  • Do I need to redesign my website? If so, how?

  • How many fundraising appeals should be sent in a year?

And plenty more! Have a particular question or area of interest you want to make sure is addressed? Email your ideas to and we’ll try to include them!


Who is putting this together?

Constellation is being produced by Darrel Frost, a communications professional, designer, and writer who’s worked with independent schools and nonprofits for more than 15 years, including the Nightingale-Bamford School (NY), Miss Hall’s School (MA), the Ethical Culture Fieldston School (NY), and the University of Puget Sound (WA).

Materials are being developed in concert with communications professionals from several independent schools. Interested in being part of our initial review process? Email us at