The Wisconsin School Public Relations Association (WSPRA) is a professional association representing schools, school districts, educational associations, consulting agencies and organizations. WSPRA is a state affiliate of the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA).

WSPRA has earned NSPRA’s Exemplary Chapter Award multiple times, distinguishing the organization as the state’s leader in school-community relations, providing valuable professional development opportunities to its members.

Mission of WSPRA

The mission of WSPRA is to “expand the capacity of its members to provide effective communication management for the purpose of strengthening educational opportunities for all students.”

History

The Wisconsin School Public Relations Association (WSPRA) was chartered in August, 1967 by the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA). George Tipler, first Executive Director of the Wisconsin Association of School Boards (WASB), recognized the critical role that public relations plays in school districts. Tipler encouraged active participation by WASB to support the efforts of public relations professionals.

From this initial handful of members, WSPRA has grown to an organization representing, schools, school districts, educational associations, consulting agencies and organizations. WSPRA continues to serve the needs and interests of superintendents, board of education members, principals, secretaries, teachers, consultants, and professional public relations personnel in school districts throughout Wisconsin.

What is a School PR Program?

According to the National School Public Relations Association, an educational public relations program

  • is a planned and systematic management function
  • helps improve the programs and services of an educational organization
  • relies on a comprehensive two-way communications process
  • involves both internal and external publics
  • has a goal of stimulating a better understanding of the role, objectives, accomplishments and needs of the organization
  • assists in interpreting public attitudes
  • identifies and helps shape policies and procedures in the public interest
  • carries on involvement and information activities which earn public understanding and support.

Source:  National School Public Relations Association

National Recognition

From its inception, WSPRA has been a very active organization, seeking to provide services to its members-an annual conference, workshops on current issues, specialized presentations, handbooks on specific topics, and networking. The National School Public Relations Association values the activities of its chapters and provides opportunities for its chapters to be recognized for activities and projects conducted throughout the year.

NSPRA Mark of Distinction

The National School Public Relations Association has recognized WSPRA as a Mark of Distinction Chapter in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2017.  WSPRA has received additional recognition as a chapter and for single projects:

  • 2007-08       Distinguished Year-Round Chapter – Honorable Mention; Distinguished Single Project:  School Crisis Communication Project
  • 2006-07       Distinguished Year-Round Chapter – Honorable Mention
  • 2005-06       Distinguished Year-Round Chapter; Distinguished Single Project:  The ABC’s of WSPRA Handbooks
  • 2004-05       Distinguished Year-Round Chapter – Honorable Mention
  • 2003-04       Distinguished Single Project: Negotiating During Difficult Times