A+ Back-to-School Outreach and Enrollment Efforts

August 25, 2016

Back-to-School is top of mind these days for caregivers, teachers, administrators, and students alike. A key to successful Back-to-School outreach and enrollment efforts is engaging your school-based partners during this busy, but critical time of year. Research suggests that when young people have insurance and receive necessary and preventive health care, their academic and other important life outcomes improve.

Schools provide important in-roads to families with children eligible for Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). That's why the Connecting Kids to Coverage National Campaign developed the School-Based Outreach and Enrollment Toolkit, a guide outlining steps organizations can take to partner with schools. The Toolkit highlights strategies for integrating enrollment into existing school processes—like including enrollment questions on new student registration forms—and developing an ongoing outreach partnership to enroll children in Medicaid and CHIP. It also includes ready-to-use tools like message guides, templates, and resource links. Bookmark or download this resource to refer to now and for planning future school-based activities.

You can access the Toolkit on the Back-to-School and School-based Outreach page on InsureKidsNow.gov. Here you'll find the toolkit, print materials, and social media images and messaging for your school-based enrollment activities.

Campaign in Action

One example of a successful outreach campaign during Back-to-School is Indiana grantee Covering Kids and Families. The organization created a helpful guidebook, An Integrated Approach to School-Linked Outreach, another resource to refer to when planning school-based and school-link outreach. The guidebook is a compilation of best practices from trainings, workshops, and activities completed as a Connecting Kids to Coverage grantee, as well as work with community partners and partner school districts. The guidebook takes you step-by-step through the planning and execution of enrollment outreach with school-based partners and is a helpful tool to organize your efforts and track your progress.

Fairfax, Virginia-based Partnership for Healthier Kids, a Connecting Kids to Coverage sub-grantee of the Virginia Health Care Foundation, kicked off their Back-to-School work by hosting three free school physical events for uninsured children from kindergarten to sixth grade who are new to Fairfax County Public Schools. The organization created a flyer in English and Spanish to encourage parents and caregivers to schedule appointments; families attending were able to complete school physical and immunization requirements. On-site enrollment counselors discussed Medicaid and FAMIS, Virginia's health insurance program for kids, as well as other social services, and helped families of 142 children enroll. Seventy-six children who were not eligible for Virginia's state-sponsored health insurance programs were enrolled into care at local health safety net providers. Each registered child received free school supplies.

We want to hear your success story!

Share your best practices and success stories with the Campaign via email at ConnectingKids@cms.hhs.gov or Twitter using #Enroll365 and #KidsEnroll in tweets. Be sure to include any Back-to-School tactics you are currently planning or have used in recent years!

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