Cohesive Messaging: Maximizing the Impact of Social Media Storytelling

Social media is a large part of how we communicate in society. Parents, students, staff, and the community expect schools and districts to share with them via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other traditional means to make information available.

Anyone can start information campaigns that build an image of what’s happening in a school or district. Often, staff members are already doing this storytelling by posting to their personal social media accounts.

This session offered an actionable pathway to support novice social media users and long-time users to discover how, with a bit of planning, you can strategically align those efforts to promote a clear and cohesive message that amplifies your organization’s mission and values.

Education leaders and aspiring administrators will discover a concrete plan for K-12 school or organization. Get started on a pathway that includes values alignment, accurate and respectful representation, story arching, and message amplification. You and your organization can combine efforts to define your narrative how you want it to be received. It is wise to have a strategic social media and marketing plan that focuses on and amplifies a cohesive vision for your community. But not everyone knows where to get started. To begin with, try looking at your organizational mission & vision statements at whatever level of the organization you are at, and begin to incorporate words and short phrases that will center your social media posts and help you look for content to share that exemplifies these values. When you see it in action, capture it in a photo or video and shout it out. If none exist, start thinking about the personal vision and core values that you want to be associated with your work.

Try using this School Messaging Document to get started. Are you wondering what this might look like in practice? Click on this example document.

The next step is to think about what events might be coming up during the school year. For example, you may want to celebrate short-term events like the beginning of the school year, open house, holidays, or staff appreciation. Or you may choose to report out long-term goals as they progress, such as the implementation of a new math initiative, school community-building activities, or a series on famous scientists not traditionally mentioned in history books. As you do this, consider how you can use expansive notions of community and belonging to drive the stories you choose to post. To help you be more aware about accurate, respectful representation, consider the following:

  1. How can you accurately reflect the diverse identities and experiences of the community and model what it means to change existing paradigms?
  2. Does the student work articulate a commitment to inclusive curriculum and allyship?
  3. Do you leverage your platform to amplify the voice and agency of historically marginalized communities?

The San Diego County Office of Education is committed to ensuring the promise of equitable education for all students. Our work is grounded in the Equity Blueprint for Action. If you are looking for ideas on how to increase belongingness within your community, I recommend you visit the SDCOE Equity Services and Support, Equity Blueprint website.

Presentation Slides

Respond at

School Messaging Document:

Examples of Story Arching with Social Media:

Example Completed School Messaging Document: