Palos Verdes High School will dramatically decrease spending on its efforts to attract district eighth-grade students to attend the high school for the 2013-2014 school year..
Last year, the high school spent $25,000 on recruitment, according to principal Nick Stephany. The money came from the school’s PTSA. Of the $25,000, $15,000 went towards an information night that Stephany likened to a small wedding, complete with an event planner.
The school spent the remaining $10,000 on creating and distributing a brochure about the school.
This year, Palos Verdes High School will return to a simple event with some student led-tours and some faculty speakers, Stephany said.
Stephany said the event got bigger after incoming students two years ago complained that Palos Verdes High’s lower-key informational night made the school seem like it cared less about attracting new students; however, he also said the money this year would have been better spent elsewhere, like buying iPads for classrooms. He also worried that that it is a contributing factor to the rivalry between the two high schools on the Hill.
In October, eight students from Palos Verdes High School were detained or arrested in connection with vandalism at Palos Verdes Peninsula High School.
Nevertheless, Peninsula High School principal Mitzi Cress said she didn’t think the recruitment—or “informational,” as she prefers to call it—process contributes to the rivalry.
“I think it’s great that kids have a choice,” she said, noting that the high schools offer different programs and scheduling options. The informational nights offer parents and students the opportunity to pick the best school for their needs, she said.
Peninsula’s information nights, which Cress described as low-key affairs with cheerleaders and the marching band, focus on helping parents decide where to send their children. The annual events usually cost between $7,000 and $10,000 and are funded by the school’s Associated Student Body organization.
Cress said this year’s event will cost well under $10,000.
Additionally, Peninsula also produces an informational media piece, such as a DVD or brochure-style folder. This year, Cress said they are going for an informational magazine, which costs less than other options and is also used as a promotional tool for school counselors when they visit colleges. The magazine will also be given to visiting officials from international schools.
She estimated that it will cost $2,500-$3,000.
Both schools plan to host their informational events in January.