Though it seems like summer just started, sometime in the next few weeks the new school year will kick off. And of course, that means the start of the new youth ministry year. For you, this likely means a ton of tasks you’ve got to get done. You know you need to have your curriculum planned, your adult volunteers lined up, and your calendar fleshed out. But there are a few things you need to check off your back-to-school youth ministry list that, in the rush to transition from summer to fall, may have slipped your mind.

But have no fear! We’re here to help out.

Here are three easy to forget things to check off your list before the school year starts:

1. Bone up on some new skills!

It’s pretty easy for most of us to get so caught up in the details of starting a new school year that we forget to improve in the actual craft of doing youth ministry. So, use the gap between your final summer programming and your fall kick-off to grow a bit in your ministry skills. Read a book about how to be a better Bible teacher. Or learn to master that attendance tracking app you bought but haven’t set up. Read some blog posts on time management. Organize your Inbox. Take the time to do things that will help you be a better youth minister come the fall.

2. Identify any students whose participation seemed to wane.

If your youth ministry is like ours, there are likely a handful of students who started out last year strong, but by the end were barely around. It happens. And it is most likely not your fault. There are a host of factors that contribute to our students’ declining participation. But one factor that contributes greatly to an increase in participation is being wanted! Reach out to the students who drifted some last year and let them know you’ve missed them and that you you’re excited about them coming back in the fall.

3. Identify a new group of potential student leaders.

You have students who have matured over the last year or two and are ready for leadership roles within your youth ministry. Take some time to jot these names down and then follow through with setting up a time to meet with them. Cast some vision for the role you see them in and ask them to begin to pray about it. Set a time to follow up and move them toward committing to an increased leadership role in your ministry.

Fall is coming! Are you ready?

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