Ombudsman Educational Services’ mission is to provide alternative education programs to help students go back to school, stay in school and graduate. Ombudsman and its parent company, Educational Services of America (ESA), operate charter schools in Arizona for students who are at risk of dropping out of school, or have previously dropped out of school. Ombudsman planned to open new locations in Tucson after operating seven successful charter schools in Phoenix. They asked Lovell to develop a strategic plan for recruiting students to enroll in the program.
Strategies and Tactics
The primary audience for this piece included organizations and individuals who worked directly with middle and high school students who were at risk of dropping out of school. Youth organizations, school guidance counselors, social workers, and juvenile justice representatives work with students who are considered at-risk because of their socio-economic status, native language or family situation.
Lovell developed compelling, informational brochures in English and Spanish with easy-to-follow maps, contact information, an enrollment application and a tear-off pad that provided referring guidance counselors and others who work with at-risk youth with additional information to easily distribute to parents and potential students.
Ombudsman distributed the recruitment brochures to a comprehensive list of local youth-oriented organizations. Within six months, two of the new locations had enrollment at capacity. One location had a waiting list above and beyond its regular capacity.