Balanced Partnerships

My district encourages principals to develop partnerships with local technology-based businesses and institutions of higher education. I agree that partnerships are important, but I’m uncomfortable about asking for something without being able to give something in return. What can we offer these potential partners?

One-sided relationships aren’t really partnerships at all: I applaud your desire to propose balanced partnerships where the school offers something in return. Think about your potential partners. Ask yourself what it is they do and how your school might be able to contribute something to that organization. For example, if you want to work with a local college, could you offer free classroom space for evening or weekend satellite courses? If it’s a local business, could you offer meeting space for a training seminar? Public thanks for support also goes a long way. Perhaps an acknowledgement page can be added to your school Web site. You can list each partner and include a brief description of how this organization contributes to the school.

Submitted by: Susan Brooks-Young

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