To enable NCASA to serve school administrators in the key focus areas of communications, advocacy and professional development, the organization almost must effectively recruit and retain members who want and need those services and are willing to pay a fee to have access to them. Membership is the life blood of the organization, and NCASA must have appropriate procedures in place to ensure membership is ongoing by school districts and individuals, who ultimately are the organization’s identity and reason for existence. To ensure a viable membership recruitment and retention process for NCASA, the following specific directives should be undertaken:
• Enhance communications about the content of member benefits and the options available for obtaining as an individual or through a school district.
• Identify a means for identifying school administrator members who are retiring and reach out to them before they leave their jobs to encourage them to stay connected with NCASA through a retiree membership. This retiree recruitment must be supported through enhanced retention efforts that should include events geared specifically toward retirees, such as a meeting at the Conference on Educational Leadership and options for involvement in NCASA advocacy efforts.
• Enhance efforts to reach non-member administrators, including those in districts that are not NCASA unit members, through email and in-person presentations about the benefits of individual memberships with NCASA. This contact should be work group specific, such as emails to all principals in a non-unit district, as well as targeted to individuals who register for NCASA conferences and events as non-members.
• Develop a professional development package that includes membership.
• Enhance working relationships with Schools of Education to encourage more student memberships that foster earlier connection with and support of NCASA.
• Determine the feasibility of initiating new unit membership options for administrators connected to public schools but not employed by school districts, including but not limited to the Department of Public Instruction and charter schools.
• Send an NCASA spokesman to orientation sessions for new administrators when feasible to discuss member benefits and promote the organization.
• Enhance member services, which help with recruitment and retention, by the following:
– Develop a repository of best practices and how-to guides that members may access on the NCASA website for professional development.
– Explore the feasibility of adding a discount buying program that allows members to purchase desirable goods and services at reduced rates offered only to NCASA members.