Here at Ravenna, we are fortunate to work with strong regional collaborations all across the country. These communities have shown how private school collaboration benefits families, admission offices and the greater school community. In this blog series, we’ll explore how and why schools begin to work together, discuss how school and family experiences improve, share guidance on getting started with your own collaboration, and cover best practices for optimization and continued growth.

Private schools in the same community are in a unique situation; they are competitors, yet working together can create big net positives. For those regions that have been successful, there are huge gains; but for communities new to the idea or those who have struggled with collaborative attempts, collaboration can be seen as a challenging goal. The good news is that there are plenty of positive models whose stories you will hear in upcoming posts.

As we kick off this series, let’s start by looking at what defines a successful collaborative. To be successful, it is important that a collaboration have the following attributes:
– All participating schools, as well as the prospective parent/guardian community, derive significant benefit.
– All participating schools are able to retain their uniqueness and differentiation from other schools.
– All participating schools see increased efficiencies and notable improvements in process.
– All schools in a region are invited to participate; smaller schools, or schools with lower budgets, are not excluded.

In the next blog article, coming this Friday, we will introduce a framework that defines the different levels of maturity we see in regional admission collaboratives. This can help you assess your region’s current level of collaboration and allow you to identify clear and straightforward steps to achieve more and more benefits from collaboration.

Later in this series, we will share some best-practice examples from around the country, discuss how to define the mission statement of your collaborative, look in-depth into the value and how-to of shared admission forms, and more.

We look forward to exploring the collaborative approach and sharing with you the experiences of schools and families around the country. We hope to spark some ideas for elevating collaboration in your community, and we would love to hear from any regions who would like to share their experiences from establishing this type of collaborative.