Rebranding a California school district

Hayward Unified Superintendent/CEO Stan “Data” Dobbs had a plan when he took over the struggling Bay Area school district: decrease the high school dropout rate, increase the number of graduations and college-ready students, and make the community proud to be “Made in Hayward.” The district needed the right firm to tell its story, and Dobbs hired S&C after seeing us in action during a media training session he attended in San Diego.

In Hayward, we immediately rewrote the District’s key messages, provided communications coaching to school board members and top staff, drafted a comprehensive crisis communications plan, and began telling Hayward’s unique story to Bay Area TV, radio and print media. We promoted positive “Made in Hayward” events and found amazing stories within the schools to share with reporters. We also engaged with Hayward’s community partners to help tell the district’s story of revitalization, and we secured countless interviews for Dobbs — a gregarious and inspiring change agent with a fascinating personal story of his own.

How do you recover from a crisis? It’s not enough to play defense and wait for the phone to ring. Smart leaders and organizations are proactive and find innovative ways to share positive news and information. We’re proud that Dobbs gave S&C the opportunity to rewrite Hayward’s story.

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