An analysis of critical factors for success in developing a multicultural public relations model: for the North Forest Independent School District

Date

1985

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the perceptions of internal and external publics awareness of a public relations program in use by the school district. Also, to investigate the perceptions of internal and external publics awareness of a public relations program that encompasses the multicultural communities and populations. Finally, the major purpose was to identify critical factors for developing a successful public relations plan for the North Forest School District. Procedures. The sample for this study consisted of 273 students, faculty, staff, community leaders and parents from the North Forest District and community. A questionnaire, based on the six-step Public Management Institute's (1980) outline and questions adapted for education were used to analyze internal and external publics attitudes. The six-step outline includes 1) the public relations audit, 2) public relations objectives, 3) audiences, 4) messages, 5) media, and 6) the action plan. Statistical frequencies and percentages were reported in each of the outlined areas as they relate to a public relations program for the North Forest Independent School District. Adjusted percentages were totaled for the analysis of the hypotheses, subhypotheses and for the identification of critical factors for a public relations program. Major Findings. The major findings indicated that the internal and external publics were not aware of a public relations program or a program that has multicultural effectiveness in the school or community. However internal publics in the subhypotheses rejected the fact that there was no known public relations program for the school or community. This study indicates that the six-step outline (PMI, 1980) can be an effective model by which to develop a successful public relations program. The strongest responses by the internal and external publics indicate the critical need as perceived for developing a successful public relations program in multicultural communities, as well as with the impact of a multicultural philosophy. Based upon the findings relating to the development of a public relations plan, recommendations were made to improve school and community relations in the North Forest School District. The need to implement a six-step public relations program, more on-going communication for internal and external publics, the incorporation of multicultural practices into the school and community and more support for the community leadership into the school district's long-range and short-range planning were all critical elements in developing a successful public relations model.

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Keywords

Schools--Public relations

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