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One-Hour Workshops: Governance Track

Designed for boards of trustees and heads of schools in their role as liaisons with the board, these workshops focus on all aspects of board governance.​​​​​​

  • Block 1 (Thursday, February 26, 8:00 - 9:00 AM)
    • Thinking Like an Entrepreneur: Startup Tools to Drive Strategic Program Innovation

      102

      A head of school and trustee found common ground in the tools and practices of startup companies to create a concrete, inclusive, and fast-moving process for driving generative change at Berkshire Country Day School. Using BCD's ongoing initiatives as a case study, explore specific examples and recommendations to bring back to school and your board.
      Presented ByColin Mathews, Merit (NY); Paul Lindenmaier, Berkshire Country Day School (MA)
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      LevelIntroductory
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      Explore What is an effective model for driving significant, generative change with appropriate roles for trustees, administrators, and faculty? What lessons from startup company management can empower an entrepreneurial head of school? How can those lessons also engage, rather than alienate, critical stakeholders while driving significant change?
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  • Block 2 (Thursday, February 26, 12:00 - 1:00 PM)
    • A Revolutionary Board: How to Design and Actualize Its Competitive Advantage

      311

      Schools today face new, exciting opportunities and challenges that the traditional board is not poised to address. Discuss head of school and board chair responsibilities in developing a revolutionary board able to set a bold strategic direction. The revolutionary board has stronger strategic skills, a growth mindset, deep understanding of all aspects of the school, an innovative culture, and courage.
      Presented ByJamie Baker, Pomfret School (CT); Don Batchelor, Presbyterian Day School (TN); Lee Burns, The McCallie School (TN)
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      LevelAdvanced
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      Explore What is a revolutionary board and why is it imperative today? How does one lead the developmental process from a traditional to a revolutionary board? What are the competitive benefits and potential pitfalls of a revolutionary board?
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    • Head Contracts and Compensation: Tips, Traps, and Best Practices

      310

      Gain an overview of the head of school contract process from an experienced school counsel. Analyze the key terms to include in head of school contracts, benchmarking requirements and best practices, rebuttable presumption obligations, and current trends in benefits provided to heads.
      Presented BySara Goldsmith Schwartz, Schwartz Hannum PC (MA)
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore What are the key terms to include and exclude in head of school contracts? What are the requirements and best practices in compensation benchmarking? How can trustees and heads work together to protect the institutionthroughout this process?
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    • Mobilizing Your Board to Inspire and Motivate Others: A Trustee’s Perspective

      101

      A capital campaign launch is an exciting time and maintaining your board’s active engagement is essential for you to galvanize your school community. Hear a trustee’s perspective on mobilizing your board to inspire and motivate donors as you implement your vision for the future.
      Presented ByDanita Wickwire and Gregory Hagin, CCS (DC); Susan Hutton, The Lab School of Washington (DC)
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore Why is ongoing board engagement and active participation necessary throughout a capital campaign to effectively implement your vision? How can you harness the energy generated at a campaign’s outset to galvanize your school’s community? What strategies can be developed to re-engage the board and therefore inspire and motivate donors during longer and possibly slower fund-raising phases?
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    • Transitioning Leadership in an Era of Accelerating Change

      306

      Demands placed on school heads to lead major changes in the way students are educated get exacerbated for heads new to a school. The capacity to lead these innovations depends on how well and how quickly new heads transition into their jobs. Hear Columbia University researchers share findings on an international study of factors that facilitate or impede the transition process and the implications for practice.
      Presented ByPearl Kane, The Klingenstein Center (NY); Justin Barbaro, Teachers College at Columbia University (NY)
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore What were the greatest challenges confronting heads of school in their first or second year? What should first-time heads know about the transition into headship? How might trustees best support incoming heads?
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  • Block 3 (Thursday, February 26, 1:30 - 2:30 PM)
    • Board Not Bored: Structuring Board Retreats with 21st Century Learning

      102

      Learn how The Hill School completely overhauled its board meetings to leverage the talent in the room, advance the school's mission, establish true camaraderie, and create a culture of generative governance while simultaneously allowing trustees to experience 21st century teaching and learning first hand. You can do it too!
      Presented ByJonathan Martin, Jonathan E. Martin Ed Services (AZ); Clair Ward, Valley School of Ligonier (PA)
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How can board meetings and retreats become more engaging, generative, and substantive for all participants? How can trustees become better informed about  and committed to 21st century learning in their schools? What forms of 21st century learning make for better board planning, analysis, and decision-making?
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    • Dynamic Change for a Changing World

      202

      When is the time right to seize a strategic opportunity that will forever change a school’s course? How does a school handle both the transformational and the daily business at hand? Find out how one school took the leap toward an opportunity of a lifetime and collaborated to manage the biggest project it had ever undertaken to a successful conclusion.
      Presented ByStephanie Flanigan, Julie Bragdon, and Monique Davis, Montessori School of Denver (CO); Andy Rockmore, Shears Adkins + Rockmore (CO)
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      LevelAdvanced
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      Explore How do you know when the time is right to undertake a big strategic project that will forever impact your school’s future?  How do you successfully collaborate with board members, administrators, and outside experts to organize and manage that project, while at the same time minding the day to day details of school life?  How do you leverage those partnerships to seize new opportunities available to your school once the project is completed?
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    • The Head’s Retirement as Learning and Innovation (Both for the School and the Head!)

      105

      Few people really like change, but it can bring new life. When a head of school decides to retire, everybody feels nervous. However this change can bring important and life-giving opportunities for the head and the school if both plan carefully for it. Examine retirement from the head’s and school’s perspectives, including valuable context and questions that both need to ask.
      Presented ByD. Ralph Davison, Carney, Sandoe & Associates (NC); Phyllis Palmiero, Collegiate School (VA)
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      LevelIntroductory
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      Explore How can the head retire "successfully" from a personal point of view?  How can the head retire "successfully" from the school's point of view?  How can the school ensure a smooth transition to new leadership?
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  • Block 4 (Friday, February 27, 8:00 - 9:00 AM)
    • Do the Right Thing: Understand That Head of School Employment Contract

      109

      Examine the key parts of a head of school employment agreement. Explore examples of key contract provisions, how to research what to expect and ask from your school, strategy, the role of the school's search consultant, and how to keep the negotiations in perspective with your family. Questions and participation welcomed.
      Presented ByTerrence Briggs, Bowditch & Dewey, LLP (MA); Ronald Cino, Worcester Academy (MA)
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore Can a civilian learn to understand what the terms of a head of school employment contract mean?  Even if I understand what the contract means, what good will it do me?  Will there still have to be lawyers involved?
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    • Steps Your School Should Take to Ensure Healthy Employee Interactions with Students

      110

      Helping employees set and maintain appropriate boundaries with students takes a systemic approach by schools — from the trustee level down to every employee. Learn the steps your school should take, including adoption of codes of conduct policies, training programs, and educating employees on setting and maintaining appropriate boundaries and knowing when to come forward with concerns.
      Presented ByLinda Johnson, McLane, Graf, Raulerson & Middleton Professional Association (NH); Chris Day, Holderness School (NH)
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore What steps should a school take to help ensure appropriate and healthy interactions between employees and students?  What kinds of policies and training programs should all schools have in this area?  What steps should a school take to respond to situations of this nature that arise?
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  • Block 5 (Friday, February 27, 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM)
    • Business Thinking, Engineering Thinking, Design Thinking Strategy, and Board Development

      201

      Through the creation of metrics to assess strategic progress, the SCDS board experienced first hand its goal to cultivate innovation. Employing the tools of business thinking/manage forward, engineering thinking/solve forward, and design thinking/discover forward, the board transformed into a design team of diverse skills. Explore the benefits and challenges of cultivating innovation at the strategic level.
      Presented ByKay Betts, Bettstrategic Group (GA); Bradley Weaver and Katie Murphy, Sonoma Country Day School (CA)
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      LevelIntroductory
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      Explore What are the opportunities and challenges presented when a board is expected to work together as a creative team?  What results when the board engages in different modalities of thinking (business, engineering, and design) to address strategic issues?  How did Sonoma Country Day School demystify its strategic goal of “Innovation” through board development?
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  • Block 6 (Friday, February 27, 1:30 - 2:30 PM)
    • Creating Your Board Dashboard: Aligning Mission with Metrics for Long-Term Sustainability

      101

      How do boards and heads of school evaluate the health of their institutions and ensure their school’s long-term sustainability? Learn how Shady Hill developed a board dashboard and prioritized mission-aligned metrics. Using existing resources in your community, it is easier than you think to present a meaningful snapshot of your school's health to keep your board focused on the strategic issues and long-term trends.
      Presented ByKim Walker and Mark Stanek, Shady Hill School (MA)
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      LevelIntroductory
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      Explore What are the advantages of having a board dashboard? What is the process to create a board dashboard? How do I choose which metrics to report to the board on the dashboard?
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