Rockford Public Schools recently received the 2019 Golden Achievement Award from the National School Public Relations Association for the district's multimedia platform, the 205 VIBE. The Communications Department launched the 205 VIBE in October 2018 as an innovative way to communicate with RPS 205 staff, students and families. The VIBE is home to a blog, podcast, videos and news, and it features contributions from students, staff, and friends and family of the district.
"This multimedia tool is bigger than the Communications Department and our district. It engages our whole community with its content and audience," said Chief Communications Officer Earl Dotson Jr. "Stakeholders' voices are important. And by sharing their unique perspectives on education and the Rockford community, they create the remarkable stories and content on the 205 VIBE that you will not find anywhere else." The platform reached 100,000 page views in May. So far, the platform includes 163 blog posts, 13 videos and 15 podcasts.
The Golden Achievement Award recognizes exemplary work in all aspects of school public relations, communication, marketing and engagement. Each entry is judged individually against the contest criteria – not against other entries – and judges select winners that meet the award criteria. Of 1,148 entries for the Award of Excellence, 667 entries won, including entries from five other Illinois districts.
The RPS 205 Communications Department received four other awards for its work from NSPRA:
Award of Excellence: The RPS 205 Communications Manual
Award of Excellence: Scott and Steve Kitzman: 2019 Athletics Hall of Fame
Award of Merit: Episode 8: Don Rundall, Jefferson High School Principal, featured on The Podcast of the 205 VIBE
Award of Merit: Episode 10: Gary Griffin, East High School Athletic Director, featured on The Podcast of the 205 VIBE
See what's live on the 205 VIBE!