Three Schools Roll Out the Red Carpet

As I travel and visit schools all across the U.S., I have the opportunity to see schools that stand out—as well as some that don’t.

In a crowded school market it is critical for schools to stand out. Donna Cutting refers to this in her book, The Celebrity Experience, as “rolling out the red carpet.” Donna’s book is an excellent read for your school’s leadership team as you consider how you can treat your student, parents and guest as celebrities.

In the past several months, I have experienced three examples of how schools roll out the red carpet for their students, parents and guests. Let me share these experiences with you.

1. Providence Academy Rolls Out the Red Carpet on the First Day of School

Providence Academy, located in the Twin Cities, takes the idea of rolling out the red carpet and literally implements this on their first day of school. New and returning students and their parents are welcomed back to campus by student ambassadors and the staff by walking down the red carpet. Students also pose for photos on the red carpet with the school mascot or with their parents. This is a great way to make a unique statement on the first day of school and to treat them as celebrities. This memorable experience is captured in this video below:

Providence Academy Rolls Out the Red Carpet on First Day of School


2. Saint James School Student Ambassadors Welcome Guests

Located in Montgomery, AL, Saint James School had their student ambassadors out in full force for a recent AISAP workshop. Students dressed in their blue blazers and were strategically positioned at the entrance as well as around campus, directing visitors to the building of the event. It was this welcoming first impression and greeting that made a difference when arriving at Saint James School. This is the same approach that they take for special events and open houses. I was also impressed by the branding with their “We are Saint James School” banners with key messages displayed throughout campus.

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3. Highlands School Student Ambassadors Welcome Visitors on Tours

Whenever I begin work with a school, I enjoy touring campus to see what prospective families experience. At Highlands School, located in Birmingham, AL, the admissions director, Judy McDonald, gave me a tour. As she showed me around campus, we stopped in several classrooms. In each class, two student ambassadors for the week got up out of their seats and greeted me at the door. With their little hands stretched out for a proper handshake, their students introduced themselves by name and described what they were doing in class. I have seen this in several other schools and it always makes a positive impression on me, as well as for prospective families visiting campus. Check out another blog post I wrote on The Ideal Campus Visit.

Whether it is the first day of school, an event your school is hosting or a campus tour, you have the opportunity to create an outstanding first impression—an opportunity to be different and to stand out in a crowded school market.

You have the opportunity to treat your students, parents and guests with something memorable.

You have the opportunity to roll out the red carpet.

How are you rolling out the red carpet at your school for your students, parents and guests?