• Jumpstart Your Event Planning: Unlock the potential of seamless event planning with a checklist tailored for educators, ensuring a stress-free path to successful professional development events.
  • Empower Your Events: Beyond a mere checklist, immerse yourself in a journey that equips you with tools, strategies, and innovative ideas, turning every step from goal-setting to post-event engagement into a triumph.
  • Adaptability and Clarity: The checklist is versatile, catering to a range of professional development events within the education sector, emphasizing that detailed planning and effective communication are essential for event success.

Educators educate and event planners plan events. However, in the call of duty, you sometimes have to do things that aren’t your job. 

For example, educators may need or want to plan professional development events. The quicker and easier you can do it, the more time and energy you have to do what you do best: teach. 

Here is our event planning checklist specifically catered to educators. It’s free, clear, easy, and leaves no stone unturned. 

There are two ways this article can benefit you. We’ve designed it so you can choose the method to suit your learning style: 

  1. DOWNLOAD – if you’re busy or like to learn by doing. Download and get planning.
  2. READ ON – if you like to absorb info before diving in, then read on. We have bonus info and resources to help you master each step. 

Happy event planning! 


Define event goals and objectives: the first step in your event planning checklist


  • As they say, failing to prepare is preparing to fail. Missing this step is inevitable event chaos. So be warned! 
  • That’s why the first step in your event template has to be setting event goals and objectives. It serves as a reference point that helps your decision-making. When going through the steps that follow, ask yourself, is this serving my event objectives? If it’s not, trash it. 
  • Secondly, if you follow your goals, it avoids the chance of wasting resources.

The tasks

  • Determine the event’s purpose (e.g., skill enhancement, new teaching methods, technology integration).
  • Identify the expected outcomes for attendees.

BONUS: This task is easier said than done. However, with our simple guide on how to set the right goals for an event, you’ll be a master in no time and ready for the next step! 


Understand your audience


  • Imagine you’re planning a dinner party. You prepare a beautiful chicken. But guess what, one of your guests is a vegetarian!
  • That’s why this next step is crucial to elevating your attendee’s event experience. If you know who they are, you can give them what they want and what they need. 
  • This will drive engagement, and thereby lead to greater event satisfaction for them, and closer to your goals on your end. 

The tasks

  • Define the target audience (teachers, administrators, education technology specialists, etc.).
  • Assess their needs and interests.

BONUS: Here’s a shortcut for you. The professional development topics educators are craving in 2024. 


Event planning team 


  • Event planning can be stressful. Less stressful when your event planning team is organized. More when it’s not. 
  • A team environment fosters creativity and innovation as members can brainstorm and collaborate on ideas. This can lead to more engaging and memorable events.
  • With multiple people involved, risks can be better identified and mitigated. Team members can oversee different parts of the event, ensuring that potential issues are addressed promptly.

The tasks

  • Assemble a team with diverse skills (logistics, content, technology, marketing).
  • Assign clear roles and responsibilities.

BONUS: To get you started on defining your event planning team, learn the difference between event coordinators and event planners.


Event Planning Tools 


Screenshot Of Event Planning Checklist In Action: Sched'S Ios App
event planning checklist

Utilizing event planning software is such an important part of your event planning checklist because the benefits are so huge! Over 85% of organizers are already using them and they’re experiencing the following rewards: 

  • Centralized Management
  • Efficiency and Time Savings
  • Enhanced Attendee Experience
  • Data Analytics and Reporting
  • Improved Communication
  • Cost Reduction
  • Scalability
  • Increased Accessibility
  • Professional Branding
  • Risk Management

The tasks

  • Research and select event planning software that offers comprehensive features. (e.g., scheduling, content, technology, marketing)
  • Assign clear roles and responsibilities. 
  • Train your event planning team on how to use the tool. 
  • Make sure all your attendees know it’s available and know how to access it.


Select a date and venue: a key event planning checklist milestone! 


  • Don’t give a potential attendee the chance to miss your event. You might only have their attention once. If you don’t give them the essential details – like the time and place – when you do, you might lose them forever. 
  • An event checklist template should always have a box for dates and venues. 
  • The sooner you know and lock these facts in – the higher your attendance will be, and the greater depth you’ll have. 

The tasks

  • Choose a date that avoids conflicts with major academic calendars or holidays.
  • Select a venue that supports the event’s format (in-person, hybrid, virtual) and size.

BONUS: Here are our best hacks for mastering in-person events (including how to get the most out of your venue!)


Budget planning


  • Long story short, embarrassment and disaster await an event planning checklist without a budget. 
  • More specifically, a clear budget provides transparency for all stakeholders involved, including sponsors, vendors, and team members. This transparency builds trust and ensures that everyone understands the financial aspects of the event.
  • Plus, A detailed budget is often required when seeking sponsorship or funding for an event. It demonstrates to potential sponsors that the event is well-organized and financially viable, increasing the chances of securing external funding.
  • And finally, if you get this section right, you might even generate money!

The tasks

  • Draft a detailed budget including venue, speakers, technology, catering, and marketing.
  • Explore potential sponsorships or partnerships.

BONUS: Take care of your budget by avoiding the hidden costs of event management apps!


Content development 


  • Effective content development captures the interest and attention of the target audience. By creating relevant and compelling content, you can engage your audience, encouraging them to participate, learn, or take action.
  • Through insightful and informative content, you can establish your brand or organization as a thought leader in your sector. This enhances your credibility and can attract partnerships, opportunities, and a dedicated following.

The tasks

  • Curate engaging and relevant content (workshops, keynotes, panels).
  • Select speakers and facilitators with expertise in the chosen topics.
  • Develop interactive sessions to enhance learning and engagement.

BONUS: How to launch a call for speakers to get the best content possible!  

How to Create an Event Schedule that Will WOW Your Attendees from Sched Support on Vimeo.


Technology and materials: an event planning checklist with no stone unturned!


  • There is a time and a place for doing things the old-fashioned way (but not in your event planning checklist). Making your own dough, taking a walk, reading a paper book, all charming pursuits. But event organizing is not the time and place. 
  • The downside to not utilizing technology – you are adding a lot of time and effort to your already full plate! 
  • The BENEFITS, however, are Efficiency and productivity, resource optimization, enhanced collaboration, data security and compliance, risk management, and sustainability.

The tasks

  • Utilize event planning software 
  • Ensure access to necessary technology (projectors, Wi-Fi, virtual platforms).
  • Prepare educational materials and resources for attendees.

BONUS: Discover the best virtual event platforms for 2024 to have the best tech possible at your command! 

Registration and communication


  • Registration provides a systematic way to manage participant information, including contact details, preferences, and any special requirements. It allows for the collection of valuable data about the participants, which can be analyzed for insights. 
  • Establishing clear communication channels as part of the registration process ensures that participants receive timely and relevant information. 
  • Provide opportunities to build and maintain relationships with participants. Through personalized communication, participants feel valued and more engaged with the event or program.

The tasks

  • Set up an easy registration process.
  • Keep attendees informed with regular updates.

BONUS: Here is the only resource you need: the ultimate event registration system guide 


Marketing and promotion


  • When you’re planning an event, it can become the center of your world. But remember, people live their own lives, where their problems and tasks are the center of their universe. 
  • I.e. don’t assume that they’re going to acknowledge and remember your event. You need to sell it. 

The tasks

  • Develop a marketing plan to reach the target audience.
  • Use social media, email newsletters, and educational networks for promotion.

BONUS: Take your promotion to the next level by uncovering these event marketing mysteries!


Logistics and operations: taking control of your event planning checklist 


  • Streamline your educational events with effective logistics, ensuring materials, technology, and schedules are flawlessly aligned for an uninterrupted learning experience.
  • Proactively identify potential logistical hurdles in educational settings, from tech glitches to scheduling conflicts, ensuring every event runs as smoothly as the last.
  • Enhance the educational impact with meticulously planned operations that guarantee engaging experiences for learners, while embracing sustainable practices that reflect conscientious event management.

The tasks

  • Plan the event layout and flow to maximize engagement and interaction.
  • Arrange for accommodations, transportation, and catering if necessary.

BONUS: Discover how Integra Schools mastered the logistical transition of moving to in-person events for inspiration! 


Accessibility and inclusivity


  • During busy and stressful planning stages. Even the most caring and conscientious people can overlook things. 
  • That’s why it’s important to make a note to remind yourself in your event planning checklist: that accessibility and inclusivity are important to students and teachers.

The tasks

  • Ensure the event is accessible to all attendees, including those with disabilities.
  • Consider language and cultural inclusivity in content and communication.

BONUS: Discover how Jesuit High School boosted accessibility and inclusivity in their event planning! 


Evaluation and feedback


  • Even if your event was amazing – the best ever – the best of all time, anything can be improved. 
  • Attendee feedback can make your event better. Cut the stuff they didn’t like, and build on the stuff they did. This will lead to high attendee retention and better outcomes for future goals and objectives. 

The tasks

  • Design pre- and post-event surveys to measure the impact and gather feedback.
  • Plan a debriefing session with the event team to discuss what worked and what can be improved.

BONUS: Avoid the feedback fiasco –  learn where event planners go wrong when it comes to attendee feedback


Post-event engagement


  • Professional development events are not open and closed stories. They’re about continual development. And your event planning checklist should reflect that! 
  • Post-event engagement makes the training you provided more effective. It also fosters long-term relations with your attendees.  

The tasks

  • Share resources, recordings, and additional materials with attendees.
  • Keep the conversation going through forums or social media groups.

BONUS: Master post-event engagement with these awesome and tested post-event survey questions


Report and celebrate success: the finish line of your event planning checklist 


  • Case studies, reports, success stories, and their like inspire others to make success of their own education events. 

The tasks

  • Compile an event report highlighting achievements and learnings.
  • Recognize and celebrate the contributions of the team and participants.

BONUS: Here is our archive of success stories. Learn from them. Get some inspiration from them. And if you want your event up there for all to see, drop us a line. We’d love to tell your story! 

The takeaways

So there you have your event planner’s checklist. It has been designed to be adaptable to various types of professional development events in the education sector, whether small workshops or larger conferences. Remember, thorough planning and clear communication are key to a successful event.


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Author: The Sched Team

We're here to help you make better events. Sched is the flexible event management software for unique events. From conferences to festivals for schools and associations, publish a beautiful interactive event website for your virtual, hybrid and in-person events with Sched.