The Value of a Prospectus

Parents hunting for good schools for their children find prospectuses invaluable.

The best prospectuses are very good indeed, doing justice to what schools have to offer with a beguiling mix of words and pictures. They make a genuine effort to capture the ethos of a school and what distinguishes it from other schools. They capture the whole excitement of the education industry, the sense of an ongoing adventure.


A prospectus is a document sent to potential (prospective) parent/s to attract them to apply for admission. It usually contains information about the school and the available courses, including advice on how to apply and the benefits of accepting a place. A Prospectus can showcase the entire school, or some schools have an individual prospectus for year levels, for example, Early Years, Junior School, Middle Years or Senior Pathways. Most schools have both online, and paper versions of their prospectus and they are linked to an application form that can be emailed or downloaded.


On open days, a prospectus can offer a greater window into life at your school, and something for prospective families to take away. Planning what content should be included, and the type of writing style, can help to illustrate life at your school, and what students and parents can expect from their time with you.

Here are some important points to consider when compiling content for your prospectuses:

Photography:  When it’s done well, photography can demonstrate how great your school is. Images of your students working, taking part in extracurricular activities, and their work is a great place to start.

Great content: Your prospectus is essentially one big advert for your school. Some points to consider are the type of writing style you want to adopt, and how much content is required. Creation of the content and copywriting should be carefully considered.

Quality Print: deciding what print style and finish are next. There is a huge difference in finish depending on the paperweight, type, and special finishes desired, this also directly affects the price. Finally, determine the quantity required for Open days, Enrolment Packs and Promotion, remember the difference in price between 500 & 1000 printed copies is minimal. A majority of the cost comes from the initial set up and print run.

There is more to a prospectus than just great content. Establishing what content needs to be included is just the first step – deciding what print style and finish are next. Getting the Principal and senior leadership team on board is essential. They need buy-in and will easily be able to articulate the school’s points of differentiation. It is also important that heads of departments are consulted, as marketing teams need to clearly communicate what special programs the activities the school offers.

Finally, use it to capture new leads on your website, always offer a digital version as well as the traditional hard copy.

Good luck and happy planning.