Maximum Impact is an affirmation of the importance of communication by America’s local boards of education and superintendents. The book is based on principles developed in our professional roles as authors, a district superintendent, educational researcher, broadcast journalist, public affairs and social media director and government spokesperson. Each chapter - highlighting critical aspects of team communication by boards of education and the superintendent - is grounded in our work and experience. Our belief in communication as a tool for district transformation leads us to focus on dynamics between school leaders and the need to deploy a strategic communication strategy, a first book in today’s literature. We endeavor to help boards of education and superintendents - aspiring, novice or veteran – to recognize the vital nature of communication in the governance and leadership of public education, now and in the future. With the call for more transparency in government, including public education, we offer our primary target audience of school leaders with new principles of communication that will help them to engage the community, employees and stakeholders in helping to make their school district successful!
Brian Creasman, Ed.D. is currently superintendent of Fleming County Schools in Kentucky. He is a published book author and has served as an assistant superintendent, a high school and middle school principal and assistant principal, and an instructional technologist and classroom teacher.
Brad Hughes provides professional development training in communications-related topics. A retired journalist and public affairs director, he manages an education news blog on Twitter, averaging better than 12,000 engagements daily.
Chapter 1: Communicating as a Purpose-Driven Team
Chapter 2: The Importance of ‘We” not “Me”
Chapter 3: Communicating When Leaders DifferChapter 4: Board Meetings and Messages
Chapter 5: An Informed School Family can be an Engaged School FamilyChapter 6: Two-way Communicating Via the News Media
Chapter 7: Know when to Talk and Know when to hold Back
Chapter 8: Learning and Practicing the Art of Listening
Chapter 9: Social Speaking – Online Engagement Matters
Chapter 10: Putting the Forward Focus on Growth
Chapter 11: Building – and Maintaining – Support for Schools
Chapter 12: Success: See It, Speak It
Chapter 13: Communicating in a Timely Manner in Calm and in Crisis
Chapter 14: Mistakes Happen and How We Acknowledge Them Matters
Chapter 15: Crafting a Year-round Schedule to Communicate School SuccessConclusion: A Final ThoughtAfterword
In Maximum Impact, Creasman and Hughes have identified what high-performing boards of education and superintendents do - communicate. No superintendent can be successful without transparent communication with their boards of education. Likewise, no board of education is going to be effective without clear communication with the superintendent. Furthermore, no school district can be successful without a board of education or superintendent that communicates effectively. Though it may seem simple, communication is the key ingredient to success - no matter the size of the school district. Maximum Impact is a must-read for board members and superintendents.
In terms of school leadership, nothing is more important than effective communication between school leaders and boards of education. That's why this book is so incredibly valuable to those in superintendent positions that are responsible for leading transformational change in our schools. Creasman and Hughes have created the perfect guide for both entry-level school leaders and seasoned veterans who are most likely searching for new strategies to articulate a shared vision within school districts.
In my thirty-eight year’s experience with school boards and superintendents I’ve come to realize the most basic reason for the two-parting company is bad communications. Conversely, the most successful board/superintendent team pays attention to communications and both are cognizant that communications is not a destination but rather a journey. Maximum Impact is A ‘how-to’ manual on board/superintendent communications, properly followed, will do as much to increase student achievement as any other educational strategy.
The most important aspect of Board/Superintendent communication is that it must be clear, concise and factual with no surprises. The relationship between both parties is predicated on effective communication that builds mutual trust and respect of each other's roles and responsibilities. Maximum Impact addresses the Key Works of school leaders.
Maximum Impact crystallizes an aspect of effective school district governance that every school board member needs to understand: Purposeful and strategic communication from district leaders like them is absolutely essential to keeping public education strong, in our communities, states and nation. Making this an even more important read – for new and veteran board members alike - are the practical tips and strategies infused throughout.
Veteran superintendent Brian Crease man and Brad Hughes, longtime communications director with the Kentucky School Boards Association, draw on real-world situations to drive home their points in several concise chapters. Topics covered include dealing with communication, conveying a message to the media and handling a crisis.