Gary Adkins, IASB communications director who has edited the IASB newsletter for the past 25 years, answers the question for this issue.
Question: I recently read that the IASB newsletter has been replaced. Is that true and, if so, why was this change made?
Answer: The change took effect with the May issue, No. 754, of The Illinois School Board Newsbulletin. The decision was made to no longer publish the newsletter, which had been in print or online continuously since November 1943. Newsletter content is now provided as an online blog, which has been appearing on the IASB website since mid-May.
The purpose of this change is to allow IASB to reach more members and to permit timelier reporting of education events and issues.
The new digital blog will continue the tradition of providing information that members want to know. IASB will continue addressing the needs and interests of board members and other school leaders in brief and attractive packages. The blog offers the advantage of more frequent, instantaneous publication of news.
Some members may miss the monthly newsletter, but instant news delivery is the expected norm today. As the technology used to convey news changes, IASB needs to keep pace. We believe this change will give members easier and better access to information that they need and want to read — in a timelier way.
This is not the first major change for the newsletter in response to digital format options and opportunities. Until July 2011, the Newsbulletin was a print publication, mailed to all members. At that time, we changed it to an e-mail newsletter, with the same format as a print publication. Text and PDF versions of the newsletter continued to be posted online, with the text version allowing readers to pick and choose individual articles without the need to wait for the entire document to download.
With the News Blog, we will strive to maintain the same editorial integrity as the Newsbulletin while appealing to and reaching a larger audience.
The News Blog is part of IASB’s social media strategy, which also includes Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube sites. Many of the topics and features contained in the former newsletter will continue in the new format and, as with the Newsbulletin, all articles posted in the Illinois School Board News Blog will be archived and searchable as well.
Although the e-newsletter has been popular, it did not reach as many of our members as the original print publication. We know that our members are ready to adapt to new mediums and delivery methods, and we hope you will like it better and come to rely on it more.
Visit the new IASB News Blog at blog.iasb.com.