Your Development Partner.

AR&D has all the capabilities to help you create, build and implement a successful engagement and retention plan. We also have the flexibility to enhance and augment your existing strategy. Simply put, our solutions can be delivered individually or in any combination that suits the particular needs and challenges of your district.

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Enrollment Analytics

AR&D’s Enrollment Analytics is a sophisticated, real-time data collection platform for gathering, aggregating and analyzing data on student churn.

In the era of “school choice,” districts must adopt the “customer-centric” attitudes, systems and processes inherent in traditional businesses. They must endeavor to understand the parent (customer) journey in relation to their schools and then identify moments of friction to fix, or moments of delight to build upon. Data is essential to identifying these opportunities.

Our platform tracks all sources of student mobility – incoming, outgoing and intradistrict – through a system of intake and exit surveys conducted as part of the enrollment/disenrollment process. Results from the surveys instantly populate to our cloud-based dashboard where data for all schools in the District is aggregated and graphed. Robust filtering capabilities allow administrators to gain deeper insight into the current student/parent experiences; quickly identify problem areas, both at the District and campus level; and monitor trends over time.



Engagement & Retention Survey

AR&D’s Engagement & Retention Survey is a comprehensive, 360-degree survey focused exclusively on parent engagement and student retention. It encompasses the following four (4) key areas of focus:



Understand the District – what makes it unique, including the current inclination toward school choice. Look at which school experiences parents value most. The higher value areas will eventually become our brand priorities (versus being “all things to all people”) and will be critical to engagement and retention efforts.


Explore satisfaction ratings of the district, both overall and with particular school experiences. Make direct comparisons to how former parents (i.e., those who have moved students to neighboring districts or charter schools) feel about their current schools.


Dive deeply into school choice. Profile the parent segments most likely to be considering a school change. Identify the driving factors behind student mobility – is it dissatisfaction with your district’s schools or interest in the opportunities/offerings of other schools?


Explore tangible things the district can offer that would increase engagement or retain/lure parents. Check awareness and perceived value of key curriculum and facility features. Hear from parents who have made the switch but then opted to return to the district – their perspective is invaluable to understanding and reducing student churn.



Brand Development Consulting

A brand is the sum total of all the emotional connections a consumer feels for a company or an organization.

A brand exists in the minds of the consumer, not in what the organization thinks of itself. While organizations may offer an array of services, the most successful among them craft a narrowly focused brand or persona that advances the attributes that are highly-valued by customers AND distinct from the competition.

Our brand development process helps clients define a clear, cohesive brand strategy based on valued attributes and student experiences, initiatives currently woven into the district’s strategic plan, and the current opportunities and challenges facing the district. It is comprised of three critical phases:


A brand research study to fully ascertain current stakeholder (parent) beliefs and behavior.


Development of a penetrating “value proposition” that best serves the future interest of the district.


Formulation of a brand message, tactical messaging concepts and creative treatments to drive the NEISD Brand forward.


Brand Storytelling

Stories with a powerful emotional component are remembered and shared.

But frequently, a school district’s approach to external communications resembles that of internal communications – putting the information out there to be understood and, hopefully, considered.

AR&D trains America’s great storytellers and news reporters. Although our techniques and approach to storytelling have evolved through the decades, the goal has remained the same: make people “feel” something.

Our Brand Storytelling service is an extensive, skills-based training program for content creators, videographers, multimedia marketers and designated employees. With limited resources available for Communications and Marketing activities, the program is designed to create a district-wide team of talented storytellers, greatly enhancing your district’s ability to consistently share its story.



Social Media & Digital Strategy

The world of social media is ceaselessly evolving as platforms like Facebook change their algorithms and deploy new “tools” for content creators who are trying to reach targeted audiences. This makes innovation in the digital space a persistent and daunting challenge.

AR&D helps your team keep pace by working to seamlessly and quickly incorporate these changes and new tools into your overall communications strategy. Our proven techniques are designed to increase content engagement on key communications channels, thus furthering the reach of your well-crafted, branded stories.

We help you build a robust yet adaptable annual digital media strategic plan for your district. It is tailored to the district’s brand priorities and includes specific monthly tactics for engaging key audiences, ensuring your stories break through the message clutter and reach the families, students and key partners you serve.



Brand Ambassador Program

From teachers to administrators, from parents to community partners; all of these supporters have the ability to be strong advocates for your district.

AR&D’s Brand Ambassador Program helps you leverage those critical voices to communicate the district’s brand mission, showcase your student experience and maintain strong ties to parents, students and the community.

Key features of the program:

• Follow a clearly defined, strategic six-step process.
• Implement a robust training program.
• Collect key data on the ambassadors and their efforts.
• Assess ongoing impact and program results.
• Implement proven tactics to reinforce achievements and reward high performers.
• Utilize the exclusive AR&D program lifecycle for continuous program improvement.



Time & Motion Workflow Analysis

AR&D’s Workflow Analysis Study is designed to better align news resources with your station’s changing operational imperatives. The study will define, in detail, the period of time required for each employee to conduct key tasks during a normal workday. And, our analysis will provide the actual cost of those tasks so station leadership can fully understand the financial implications of each activity in light of the expectations and responsibilities of each department. The end-result is a comprehensive data set and blueprint for transforming and re-aligning your newsgathering resources.



We help you understand what is happening in your industry, why, and how to create a strategy to navigate the change.