PUBLIC RELATIONS RFP ISSUED BY GOOCHLAND COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD

2021-05-14 by Jade Minh
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Goochland County School Board (GCSB) is seeking qualified firms to be their Communications/Public Relations Consultant and/or improve and redesign our website to provide increased functionality and support in a user-friendly environment. Our goal is to be able to effectively communicate major upcoming initiatives and the superlative day-to-day work that Goochland County Public Schools (GCPS) is doing to “maximize the potential of every learner.”

Goochland County Public Schools (GCPS) serves 2,510 K-12 students in Goochland County. Goochland County is in the eastern piedmont of central Virginia between the cities of Richmond and Charlottesville. The County is 281 square miles in a narrow band, 37 miles long with the James River to the south and Interstate 64 to the north. There are three elementary schools, one middle school and one high school. Goochland County Public Schools has been recognized as a Virginia Division of Innovation and as a Niche.com top school division in the Richmond region for three consecutive years.

All five schools in the division are Apple Distinguished Schools, a recognition held by only 400 schools in 34 countries. The GCPS mission is to maximize the potential of every learner. We adhere closely to our Engage 20/26 Strategic Plan which includes strong diversity and inclusion goals. Goochland County Public Schools serves a growing community and enjoys widespread support from its citizens and elected officials. The immediate and long-term future of Goochland County Public Schools will be highlighted with several high profile, legacy initiatives and projects in both instructional and capital improvements. Of immediate concern are current preparations to issue the at bond referendum to replace the centrally located 60-year-old elementary school with a new, 650 student school to be built near the existing middle/high school complex. The community will be asked to weigh in on the design of that building and the need to adjust school boundaries for the first time in decades. The division is also planning to implement a balanced instructional calendar to add intersessions to the school year beginning in August 2022. These are several major areas of focus for the school division, and the services of our web designer and public relations consultant, in collaboration with each other and with division staff, will be critical to the successful implementation of these initiatives. The division currently has a comprehensive website at www.goochlandschools.org which is maintained by a number of Central Office and school-based staff. The following social media presence is also used by the School division Central Office staff with each School and major team or department maintaining their own social media presence: Twitter (@glndschools), Instagram (@goochlandschools) and Facebook (@GoochlandCountySchools)

Scope of Work:

GCSB is issuing this Request for Proposals (RFP) to receive sealed proposals for consulting services related to GCSB’s public relations, marketing and communication needs, including an upgrade of the current School website. The scope of work is split into two tasks so that a company can respond to one or both of the tasks:

TASK 1 Public Relations and Communications Consultant

GCSB is issuing this Request for Proposals (RFP) to receive sealed proposals for consultant services related to GCSB’s public relations, marketing and communications needs with detailed scopes of work to be developed and negotiated on an annual basis. General activities include the creation and revision of internal and external communications in varied media, including informative materials and resources to provide clear and timely messaging, a polished and modern image, and the encouragement of community participation.

Deliverables will include the following with the first four items being delivered by August 1, 2021:

1. Provide evaluation of and recommendations for communication activities based on detailed analysis of the community audience and goals of Goochland County Public Schools.

2. Evaluate existing public relations, outreach, and marketing support to provide recommendations for improvements, abandonments, and revisions to PR and marketing practice.

3. Be aware that division staff will be supporting Goochland County staff who are working with their PR firm to develop a targeted marketing and public relations plan in support of the November 2021 Goochland County bond referendum. Insure that GCSB messaging aligns with and points to the Goochland County information.

4. Work directly with the selected web design vendor and division technology staff (operational and instructional) to collaborate on website content updates and provide feedback for website adjustments to support public relations and marketing purposes.

5. Create and initiate a marketing and information plan to support the strategic goals and ongoing work of Goochland County Public Schools, to include collaboration with internal and external stakeholders, and local, regional, state, and national partners, where needed.

6. Develop communication plans for specific projects, including detailed timetables, public relations and outreach actions, and suggested media placement options.

7. Design, draft copy for, and assist with the production of reports and publications including, but not limited to, annual reports, newsletters, mailers, brochures, and fact sheets.

8. Develop and produce or assist in producing creative advertising for division events and engagement opportunities.

9. Develop and produce or assist in producing marketing videos for key communications (such as bond referendum, balanced instructional calendar, school boundary adjustments, new school design).

10.Leverage established relationships in local, regional, state, and national media to expand exposure for the division.

TASK 2 Website Design, Implementation and Maintenance

GCSB is issuing this Request for Proposals (RFP) to receive sealed proposals for services related to GCPS’s webpage and all web pages associated with GCPS with detailed scopes of work to be developed and negotiated on an annual basis. General activities include the design and maintenance of the GCSB webpage (www.goochlandschools.org) and all associated school and organization websites toward the utmost accessibility, clarity, ease of use, and integration with existing instructional and technology applications in an inviting, engaging, and aestheticallypleasing format. Website content, from web copy to multimedia, should be compelling and narrative-driven. While we’re not asking for written content in this RFP, the design and Content Management System (CMS) must work to showcase and elevate our content, creating a sense of unity across content of varying types, styles, and production sources. The GCPS homepage and all associated GCPS websites should be current and clear public-facing platforms that enhance our reputation as a division of innovation.

Deliverables will include the following with the first six items being delivered by August 1, 2021 and the balance by the end of May 2022:

1. General design features: Using industry best practices, the website vendor will design a custom look and feel for the new GCPS website. The website will feature a high impact design while still maintaining ease of use to guide the visitor to the information they are looking for and encourage them to act. The website serves as a resource, guide, and portal. Whether users are searching for a school website, looking for specific information about Goochland County Public Schools, or simply exploring, their experience should be intuitive and seamless. The GCPS website should reflect their dedication to inclusion and diversity, must serve a broad global audience, and its design, messaging, and content should reflect the diversity of GCPS.

2. The vendor will analyze current visitation trends and other functions of the existing site to make recommendations on the design and function of the new site. (Access to current site’s analytics is available.)

3. Content on Current Site: Working in collaboration with the selected Communications Consultant, the Designer will offer direction on the overall site pages and based on this recommendation, create the main pages of the website and templates for staff to add additional pages. Timeline for this basic launch is August 1, 2021.

4. Design Process: The Designer will detail its recommended process used in designing and building the new website in this RFP response, including a proposed timeline for implementation of different features of the website. The actual process will require pre-approval by designated GCSB IT staff.

5. Customer service should be responsive and effective, to include at least regular and on-call maintenance of the website, immediate tech troubleshooting, responsiveness to requests for enhancements, and periodic review of content for timeliness, accuracy, and reliability of linked content.

6. The Content Management System (CMS) must be user-friendly and training costs need to be included in the price quoted. The website and its content should be flexible and adaptable, and will continue to evolve. As such, the CMS needs to be flexible and user-friendly to content administrators so that GCSB staff can most effectively enact institutional priorities and respond to user needs. Offerors shall provide a quote that includes any annual or monthly fees including charges for updating software, hosting, or any edits that GCSB staff may not have the technical expertise to accomplish. The Offerors will also provide information on any costs involved with the CMS that are not included in the price quoted (annual fees, subscriptions, etc.).

7. Site Upkeep: GCSB is currently using a WordPress multi-site installation containing 34 individual sites. Most departments have staff trained to use the current content management system (WordPress) to edit their department’s web content. Editing privileges are maintained at the site (departmental) level and editors have access only to designated sites. The capability to restrict editing privileges of individual editors is needed. It’s critical that staff is trained to update/edit the site after it’s turned over. These updates might include updates to events or current listings, new pages, blog posts, itineraries, testimonials, videos, and calendars. These standard updates done by GCSB staff should not incur additional agency fees. Designated County Technology Services staff will require a higher level of training than departmental editors, including the ability to create new sections/departments.

Due Date:

May 17, 2021

Address:

Finance Department Attn: Tandra Harris Physical/Delivery Address: 2938-I River Rd West Goochland, VA 23063 Postal Mailing Address: P. O. Box 169 Goochland, VA 23063-0169

Hunter PR and Magrino PR are agencies worth considering.