Posting Announcements & Events

About Posting

 

    About the Announcements newsletter

    How to Post Announcements & Events


    Who can post announcements or events?

    Only BPN Community Subscribers can post announcements and events. Community subscribers are local schools, childcare providers, camps, classes, and child-related businesses & organizations that support BPN by purchasing a yearly subscription in exchange for publicizing their programs on BPN. These fees allow BPN to remain a not-for-profit, advertising-free resource for the entire community, and to continue to offer free subscriptions to parents.  For information about how to subscribe, see About BPN Community Subscribers.


    What types of postings are accepted in Announcements & Events?

    Announcements:

    The Announcements listing is for general announcements about ongoing activities and services specifically for parents, children, or families. BPN doesn't accept announcements about other types of services or activities.

    1. Summer & Holiday Camps
      • All types of summer camps and camps for school holidays
      • Examples: day camps, sleepaway camps, travel opportunities for teens

    2. Kids' Classes, Groups, Teams & Tutors
      • In-person classes only (online classes & lessons are not accepted)
      • Examples: music classes, sports teams, choruses, social skills groups, college advisors, math tutors

    3. Parent Classes, Workshops & Groups
      • Workshops, classes, support groups, lectures, presentations for parents
      • Must be specifically for parents, moms, or dads
      • In-person only; online classes, coaching, and advising are not accepted

    4. Services for Parents, Families & Children
      • Services that you offer specifically for parents or children that are not classes, camps, schools, etc.
      • Examples: therapists, doulas, midwives, medical services, legal & financial services

    5. Preschools & Daycares with Current Openings
      • Daycares, preschools, and childcare centers with immediate openings.  (Note upcoming admissions events such as tours and informational sessions should be posted as Events - see below.)

    6. K-12 Schools with Current Openings
      • K-12 schools  with immediate openings.  (Note upcoming admissions events such as tours and informational sessions should be posted as Events - see below.)

    7. Researchers & Authors Seeking Parents/Kids
      • See Research Queries on BPN for more information about who can post research queries
      • Examples: university researchers, public media, magazine articles, focus groups, marketing surveys

      • Community subscribers can post about jobs that are available at their school, camp, organization, or childcare facility.  Note: BPN does not accept job offers about multi-level marketing opportunities or job announcements from recruiters.
      • Nonprofits can post volunteer opportunities for kids, teens, and parents.

    Events:

    Your event will appear on the BPN website as soon as it is approved, and it will be included in the weekly Announcements newsletter the week before the event date. There are two types of events that we accept:

    1. Kid-Friendly Events & Outings
      • One-time events for kids or families (not ongoing events such as classes)
      • Events must be open to the public (not members only)
      • Examples: festivals, concerts, performances, street fairs, school fairs

    2. Info Sessions/Tours/Open Houses (for schools, preschools, camps, classes)

      • Events for parents to learn about your school, camps, class, etc. (Current openings at your school should instead be posted to Announcements.)
      • Examples: tour dates, open houses, informational presentations about your school, preschool, camp, or classes


    What types of postings are NOT accepted? 

    BPN does not accept the following types of events or announcements:

    1. Adult-targeted announcements & events that are not specifically for adults who are parents are not accepted. This includes activities such as adult drawing classes, workout classes, therapy groups, gallery openings, and political rallies. Announcements about activities and services must be targeted to parents, parents-to-be, families, or children.

    2. Fundraisers such as auctions or requests for cash donations. See the Fundraising Policy for details. Note: kid-friendly events such as school carnivals and performances open to the public are accepted.

    3. Political calls to action such as "Call your school board member about this important topic!"  are beyond the scope of BPN. There are many other online resources where you can post about these activities, which are beyond the scope of BPN.

    4. Members-only events and classes that are available only to your members or to your school community.

    5. Posting on behalf of some other person or organization. Postings must describe services offered by the person who subscribed. 

    How often can I post?

    • Post a new announcement every 30 days.

    Announcements remain published on the website for 30 days. Note your announcement appears in only one newsletter, the next one after you post.  Please do not post a new announcement until your existing post has expired. If you offer activities in more than one category, you can have more than one active post. For example, you can submit a post about your summer camp and a separate post about after-school classes. If you do have more than one program you want to publicize, we recommend spacing them out so they are not bunched together in one newsletter.

    • Post upcoming events as early as you like.

    Events remain published on the website until the event's date has passed. Each event post can have up to three different dates, such as school tours scheduled on different days. Up to three event postings (each with up to three dates) can be active at the same time.  If your event has more than 3 dates, please submit a new event once the previous one has expired. Note the weekly newsletter includes only events that are coming up in the next 10 days, but all your approved events appear on the website.


    Why can't parents post announcements?

    Announcements and events are accepted only from Community Subscribers, not from parents. In order for BPN to be self-sustaining, and keep subscriptions free for parents, we need schools and businesses to purchase a subscription. If parents can post announcements for them, there is less incentive for them to purchase a subscription. 


    I'm a parent in charge of publicity for my child's school

    If you are a parent in charge of publicizing events for a public school or public charter school, you can create a BPN Community Subscription for your school - it's free for public schools - and then post events and announcements for the school. See How can I subscribe for my child's public school?  Private schools, camps and classes, whether non-profit or for-profit, must subscribe to BPN themselves to post announcements because they are required to purchase a subscription.


    I'm a parent who runs a group for other parents

    Parent-run not-for-profit groups such as moms' clubs and parent support groups may be eligible to subscribe as a free nonprofit and post announcements, even if dues are charged, as long as the group is organized and run by parent volunteers and no one is being paid.  See Volunteer-run parent support groups.


    When is the newsletter mailed?

    • The Announcements newsletter is emailed every Friday.  It contains all new announcements (posted during the past 10 days) as well as all events that are coming up in the next 10 days.

    • The Parents of Teens newsletter is emailed on Monday to parents who have teens, preteens and young adults.  If you check the box "Include in Parents of Teens Newsletter?" on your post, it will be included in the Parents of Teens newsletter in addition to the Announcements newsletter. Please check this box only if your post is relevant for parents of teenagers and young adults. 

    What is the deadline for the newsletter?

    The Announcements newsletter is mailed late on Friday or early Saturday. Any pending posts are reviewed on Friday before the newsletter is mailed.   Post well before Friday if you want your post included in this week's newsletter so the moderator has time to review your post and correspond with you if necessary. 

    • Announcements: Post your announcement no later than Thursday evening if you want it to be included in this week's Announcements newsletter. If you want your post to go out next week, wait until you receive the newsletter on Friday and then post.

    • Events: You can post future events at any time. Events are published immediately after being approved in the Events Listing. If you are posting about an event for the coming week, be sure to post by Thursday (or preferably earlier) to get it into this week's newsletter.  Events do not appear in the newsletter until the event date is within 10 days of the newsletter's mail date. Therefore if you have posted an event that is more than 10 days in the future, your event will be on the website, but will not appear in the newsletter until the week before the event. Check the Events listing or your account page to confirm whether your post about a future event has been published on the website.

    • Parents of Teens, Preteens, and Young Adults: Post your announcement or event by Thursday. The Teens newsletter is mailed on Monday, but all posts are reviewed by the Announcements moderator, who catches up pending posts on Friday but may not review posts again until Tuesday or Wednesday. This means that if you post something on the weekend for teens, your post may not make it into Monday's Teens newsletter.

    I don't see my post in the newsletter

    First, check your account page to make sure your post has been approved.

    If it has been approved, did you post an announcement or an event?

    • Announcement:  Your post was (or will be) included in the next newsletter that is mailed after it's approved. Only newly posted announcements (i.e., posted in the past 10 days) are included in the weekly newsletter. Older posts are on the website, but already appeared in a newsletter.  Your announcement will remain published on your profile page and on BPN's website in the listing you posted to for 30 days. 

    • Event: Your post will be included in the newsletter that is mailed the week before your event. This means that if you post an event that is 2 or more weeks in the future, your post won't appear in the newsletter until a week before the event.  However, note that your event will be published on your profile page and in the Events listing on the BPN website from the time it is approved until the event date has passed.

    Hints for posting a good announcement

    Your announcement will be published for 30 days on the BPN website, but most parents will read your post in the newsletter that comes out on the first Friday after you post. If you don't already subscribe to the Announcements newsletter, go to your account page and add it, so your can read it every week. Then you'll know when your post is published, and you can also see examples of posts from others.

    1. Make your title specific and informative. Only the title on your post will appear in the newsletter (along with the name of your school or business and your city, which are added automatically.) Parents will not read your post unless your title tells them that you are offering what they're looking for. Therefore your title should have enough information that parents will want to read more.
      • Be specific. A title that is too vague, such as "Daycare openings," will not get as many views as "Openings for toddlers in North Berkeley."
      • For classes and camps, include brief information in your title about the unique aspects of your program such as the age group, the location, or the type of program.  "Ceramics for middle schoolers in Richmond Annex" is a better title than "Summer Art Camp." 
      • For preschool and daycare openings, your title should include the ages you are accepting and when the openings are available, for example "Openings next month for two infants."
      • Your city will be displayed automatically, but for big cities such as Oakland, it's a good idea to include your neighborhood in the title, such as "Daycare openings for toddlers in Montclair."
      • The name of your school or business is automatically added to your title, so don't re-type it into the Title field. You don't want a title that says "Mary's Art Class: Mary's Art Class is now enrolling" because it's repetitive and also reduces the number of characters available for your title. 

    2. Include the most important information in the first two sentences of your message.  On the website, your post will appear in a listing such as "Summer and Holiday Camps" or "Preschools & Daycares with Immediate Openings". Only the title and the first few lines of each message are displayed in the listing. To read the full post, parents click a title. Therefore your first few lines need to be attention-grabbing, with essential information about locality, ages, dates, and the type of program it is. Look at other posts in the listing to get an idea of what people post.

    3. What sets your program apart from similar programs?  There are a lot of preschools, camps and classes for parents to choose from in the Bay Area. Your post should focus on what you do that is different. Do you target certain age groups? Do you teach specific skills? Do you specialize in a particular type of child? Do you serve a particular neighborhood? Do you provide a cozy setting? Do you provide home-cooked meals?

    4. Keep it short.  Be specific about the logistics (ages, days, times, location), but don't include more than 1-2 sentences in your post about yourself, your training and experience, or the philosophy of your program.  Parents are scanning the listings for programs that fit their reality: when, where, for how long, for what ages.  If you put too much information in your post, it is harder for parents to pull out the basics, ad they might pass over your post. Once they identify the programs that fill their basic needs, they will contact you or read your profile page or website to dig deeper and see if there is a good fit. 

    5. Targeting teens and preteens? If your program targets ages 12-18, be sure to check the box "Include in Teens." This will include your post in the weekly Parents of Teens newsletter in addition to the Announcements newsletter. See above for deadlines.


    How to Post an Announcement

    Click 'Post a Message' in the main navigation bar on any page or on your account page. Then click Post an Announcement. If you don't see this button, you are either not logged in, or you do not have access to post announcements & events.

    1. Your Profile Page on BPN:  Begin typing the name of your school, organization or business (the name at the top of your profile page), and choose its name from the list that appears.  This name will be automatically included at the beginning of the title on your post. 

    2. Announcement Title:  Type in a title (see above for hints).  Don't include the name of your school or business again, or your city, since these will be automatically included.

    3. Announcement Type:  Choose the type of announcement you want to post.

    4. City: Choose the city you're located in. If you have multiple sites, scroll to the end of the list and choose one of the more general areas such as "East Bay Area."

    5. Ages:  Check the ages your announcement is appropriate for. For example, if you are announcing openings in your daycare and you accept ages 0-5 years, check Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers.

    6. Is your announcement relevant to teens, or parents of teens? Check this box if your post is relevant for parents with teens, pre-teens, or young adults.  Your post will then be included in the weekly Teens newsletter in addition to the regular Announcements newsletter.

    7. Body: Type your message into the box. If you plan to copy-paste the text from another document, first click "Disable rich text" under the box and then paste in the copied text.  Otherwise, the formatting from the original document will be included in your message, including fonts and spacing that the BPN website doesn't support. Only plain text is supported, along with a few formatting tools. Use the icons in the bar at the top of the message window to format your message:
      • B = Boldface.  Select text that you want to be boldface and click this
      • I  = Italics.  Select text that you want to be italicized and click this
      • Bullet or numbered list.  Click on a line of text and then click this to put a bullet or number in front of the line. Click it again to remove the bullet.
      • Indent.   Click on a line of text and then click left arrow or right arrow to indent it or remove indentation.
      • Link to a website. (Looks like a carabiner) Select a line of text and click the carbiner icon. Type the URL (web address) you want to link to into the pop-up window and then click OK to create a link to a website.

    8. Contact:  You must provide a contact name along with either an email address or phone number.

    9. Preview: Click the Preview button at the bottom.  Review your post. If you make any changes, click Preview again.  If your post is OK, click Submit for Review.

    It may take a couple of days for the moderator to review your post. All pending posts are reviewed before the Announcements newsletter is mailed. See deadines above.


    How to Post an Event

    Click 'Post a Message' in the main navigation bar on any page or on your account page. Then click Post an Event.  If you don't see this button, you are either not logged in, or you do not have access to post announcements & events.

    1. Your Profile Page on BPN:  Begin typing the name of your school, organization or business (the name at the top of your profile page), and choose its name from the list that appears.  This will appear at the beginning of the title on your post. 

    2. Event Title:  Type in a few words about the event.  Don't include the name of your school or business again, since it will be automatically included.

    3. Event Type:  Choose the type of event you want to post.

    4. Is your announcement relevant to teens, or parents of teens? Check this box if your event is relevant for parents with teens, pre-teens, or young adults.  Your post will then be included in the weekly Teens newsletter in addition to the regular Announcements newsletter.

    5. Date & Time: Enter up to three dates for this event.

    6. City Where Event Takes Place: Check the city where the event takes place. If you have multiple sites, scroll to the end of the list and choose one of the more general areas such as "East Bay Area."

    7. Ages:  Check the ages your event is appropriate for. For example, if you are holding an open house for your high school, and both parents and students may attend, check Teens and Adults.

    8. Event Description: Type in a description of the event. If you plan to copy-paste the text from another document, first click "Disable rich text" under the box and then paste in the copied text.  Otherwise, formatting from the original document will be included in your message, including fonts and spacing that the BPN website doesn't support. Only plain text is supported, along with a few formatting tools. Use the icons in the bar at the top of the message window to format your message:
      • B = Boldface.  Select text that you want to be boldface and click this
      • I  = Italics.  Select text that you want to be italicized and click this
      • Bullet or numbered list.  Click on a line of text and then click this to put a bullet or number in front of the line. Click it again to remove the bullet.
      • Indent.   Click on a line of text and then click left arrow or right arrow to indent it or remove indentation.
      • Link to a website. (Looks like a carabiner) Select a line of text and click this. Type the URL (web address) into the pop-up window and then click OK to create a link to a website.

    9. Contact:  You must provide a contact name along with either an email address or phone number.

    10. Preview: Click the Preview button at the bottom.  Review your post. If you make any changes, click Preview again.  If your post is OK, click Submit for Review.

    It may take a couple of days for the moderator to review your post. All pending posts are reviewed before the Announcements newsletter is mailed.