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One-Hour Workshops: Block 6

Block 6Friday 1:30-2:30 PM
  • Communications and Advancement
    • Communicating in a Catastrophe: Surviving and Thriving in a Crisis

      2000

      Independent schools periodically face cataclysmic events, but your darkest days also offer opportunities to showcase the true character of your community. Discuss the crisis situations you are most likely to experience in the next year. Prepare in advance and learn how to communicate in a way that demonstrates your core values and leadership skills.
      Presented ByJane Hulbert and Jim Hulbert, The Jane Group; Myra McGovern, National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
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      TrackCommunications and Advancement
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      LevelIntroductory
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      ExploreHow can one write a message that sounds authentic and in the voice of the head and not the lawyer, and make sure the message will not get the school sued? How can one write with empathy and integrity? What should every communications director have ready to go in their crisis communications toolkit? How can one craft a message that reflects a school's values?
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    • Getting to Launch: Strategies for a Successful Website Redesign

      2002

      Redesigning your school website can feel daunting, but thorough research and planning can make the process less painful. Superb graphic design, navigation, content, overall user experience – these can mean the difference between a mediocre site and a great one. Meadowbrook took a hands-on approach and got what it wanted. Learn strategies for effective redesign.
      Presented ByIlyssa Frey and Jonathan Schmid, The Meadowbrook School of Weston (MA)
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      TrackCommunications and Advancement
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore What steps do you need to take to develop an exceptional school website? Who should be involved in content and design strategy and what can you do to minimize the pitfalls along the way? How do you ensure your site doesn’t look and feel like every other independent school’s?
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    • May Term: An Experiment in Intrapreneurial, Silo-Busting, Mission-Based Storytelling

      2008

      Hear a curricular leader, a technologist, an entrepreneur, a marketing expert, and a social media maven share how they collaborated to paint a new and vibrant picture of senior projects completed during the month of May. Examine our experiences using microsites, social media platforms, and silo-busting innovations to amplify the student voice on the way to telling our school's story.
      Presented ByStephen Valentine, Reshan Richards, Bill Stites, Kim Saunders, and Gretchen Berra, Montclair Kimberley Academy (NJ)
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      TrackCommunications and Advancement
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How can you knock down silos -- between academic departments, technology teams, and marketing teams -- to build collaborative storytelling muscles in your school? How can effective storytelling and marketing not only report on work in schools but also drive it and shape it? How can you use a collaborative process to generate content for stories in the middle of busy school years?
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  • Governance
    • Head of School Succession: Good Boards and Good Plans Aid Transition

      2014

      A generation of long-serving school heads is nearing retirement. Schools can mitigate the disruption that comes with leadership succession with a strong strategic plan and the proper board role in oversight. Gain strategies to ensure a smooth transition buttressed by best practices in nonprofit governance and planning.
      Presented ByAdam Gaynor, Plan A Advisors; Douglas Lyons, Connecticut Association of Independent Schools; Bryan Nixon, Whitby School (CT); and Carole Everett, New Jersey Association of Independent Schools
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      TrackGovernance
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreAt a point of succession, whose responsibility is it to chart a school’s vision and how can the process engender broad buy-in in a school community? What characteristics of high-functioning boards make it more likely that a newly-hired head of school will succeed in their role? Given the high failure rate of new heads-of-school, what are best practices and pitfalls involved in the selection process, and in on-boarding to make them more likely to succeed?
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    • Independent School Leadership: Heads, Boards, and Strategic Thinking

      2003

      How can we design boards of trustees that are well-positioned to think strategically about the long-term best interests of the schools they serve? Examine survey data, statistical analysis, and case study themes from doctoral research at Vanderbilt's Peabody College of Education. Get recommendations to spur generative thinking and strategic action.
      Presented ByDavid Ostroff, All Saints' Episcopal School of Fort Worth (TX); Stephen Campbell, Lausanne Collegiate School (TN); and Troy Baker, Pace Academy (GA)
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      TrackGovernance
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreHow might school heads and board chairs design boards of trustees that are well-positioned to think strategically about the long-term best interests of the schools they serve? How might independent school leaders assess the effectiveness of their boards? To what extent do board characteristics, structures and activities influence both strategic effectiveness and institutional performance?
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    • Turning That Ship of a School to a New and Challenging Course!

      3000

      Schools have focused on what it takes to prepare students to be 21st century learners, but have we asked what it takes to be a 21st century school? Traditional strategic plans look ahead five years; in today's changing global environment does that still work? Discover how to become nimble, react to change, and implement new programs quickly and effectively.
      Presented ByRobert Vitalo, Brandon Clarke, and Lydia Denworth, Berkeley Carroll School (NY)
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      TrackGovernance
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How does a board of trustees support and promote innovation? Why is it important to speed up the cycle of change in our schools? Who needs their hands on the wheel when an entire school needs, or wants, to change course?
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  • Leadership Development
    • Administrator Roundtable: A Model for Participant-Driven Professional Development

      3003

      Let’s talk about what interests YOU! Using the unconference format, come ready to drive discussion topics, share knowledge and passions, and find solutions to common challenges administrators face. Uncover a new method for facilitating professional development to bring back to your own school.
      Presented ByLiz Davis, Synapse School (CA); Lorri Carroll, Hamden Hall Country Day School (CT); Justine Fellows, Greens Farms Academy (CT)
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntroductory
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      Explore What are common challenges that other administrators face? How do other administrators deal with these challenges? How can I better facilitate professional development at my school?
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    • International Certification for Your School Community

      2004

      CIS International Certification helps schools educate students to keep pace with internationally recognized standards and enable their development as global citizens. Learn how one school moved forward with whole-school development projects focused on developing intercultural understanding and a range of skills for students.
      Presented ByGraham Ranger and Ann Straub, Council of International Schools (CIS) and Deborah Richman, Turning Point School (CA)
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntroductory
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      ExploreIn what ways can my school strategically focus on the development of students as global citizens? What does intercultural competence look like in a school? How does the International Certification process explore and evaluate a school community’s fundamental values and beliefs about international education and resulting outcomes for their students?
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    • Leadership + Design Lab: Seeking 21st Century Talent

      2005

      Want to foster students’ 21st century skills – creativity, teamwork, critical thinking? Start by seeking and developing those traits in teachers and leaders. Partner with Silicon Valley HR pros and use playful design thinking to explode and reimagine school hiring practices, from recruiting to interviewing and ongoing professional development.
      Presented ByMatt Glendinning, Moses Brown School (RI) and Carla Silver, Leadership+Design
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How can we overcome the hidden assumptions that shape (and limit) traditional hiring practices? What can educators learn from Silicon Valley about recruiting 21st-century talent? How can rethinking hiring help your school carry out its mission?
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    • Leading School Change

      3022

      Designed for school leaders, this session will explore the key processes and theories of strategic change. Experienced administrators know that even under the most favorable conditions, leading change can be challenging. This interactive workshop will explore change theory and research-proven leadership strategies associated with building capacity to support change.
      Presented ByAnne-Marie Lohse and Scott Bauer, George Mason University
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreWhat are the most effective strategies and theories associated with school change? As a leader, how can I build the capacity for change – and leadership capacity – in my school? What four questions can leaders use to ensure that their change plans are well developed and that they are ready to move forward with change?
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    • Leap of Faith: Challenging Conventions and Rules to Create a Model Program

      2006

      Hear the inspiration, pitfalls, and euphoria of starting a new school from its founder as they share how they create an innovative, evidenced-based, college preparatory program for students on the autism spectrum. Discuss the value and difficulty of collaborative work and get an outline of this unique program as it has evolved over 14 years.
      Presented ByFrederick Weissbach, Mary Murphy, Tom Hays, Rebecca Hays, Cynthia Pope, and Lee Barsom, Franklin Academy (CT)
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore What does it take to design and implement an innovative school or program? This involves a balance of skills and temperaments and a vibrant community of educators in addition to financing, buildings, and supplies. What are the primary educational needs of bright students on the autism spectrum and how do we best meet those needs and prepare them for college? What are strategies for creating a dynamic, holistic, and healthy learning community for students, teachers, and administrators?
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    • Listening and Reflection: Two North Stars Guiding Authentic Independent School Leadership

      2007

      In an age of rapid communication and immediate gratification, authentic leaders who can put their own stories aside, sit with others, and truly listen are uniquely positioned to connect with others. Examine personal leadership stories and the latest educational research on the power of emotional intelligence, listening, and reflection.
      Presented ByJessica Flaxman, Charlotte Country Day School (NC); Ann Klotz, Laurel School (OH); Melinda Bihn, French American International School (CA); and Lynn Casto, Sanford School (DE)
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore What does effective listening look like in independent school leadership? When and how can reflection be built into the school leader’s day? What are some compelling stories and research that illustrate how listening and reflection empower the school leader to better connect with and understand diverse school constituencies?
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    • Ten Heads, Ten Years, Ten Lessons: Members of the INH Class of ’06 Tell Their Tales

      2018

      Over 60 heads of school gathered in July 2006 to take part in NAIS’ Institute for New Heads. Ten years later, ten heads (including INH leader Reveta Bowers) reunite to share ten lessons learned. We welcome sitting heads and heads-to-be to join us for an engaging presentation, rich with wisdom, longitudinal data, reflection, cautionary tale, humor, and inspiration.
      Presented ByJohn Huber, Emerson School (MI); Reveta Bowers, The Center for Early Education (CA); Carolyn Chandler, Metairie Park Country Day School (LA); Ian Craig, Harding Academy (TN); Mark Devey, Perkiomen School (PA); Julie Elam, Marin Primary & Middle School (CA); Josie Holford, Poughkeepsie Day School (NY); Andy Jones-Wilkins, Tandem Friends School (VA); Annette Raphel, Belmont Day School (MA); and Amy Vorenberg, Beauvoir, The National Cathedral Elementary School (DC)
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreWhat lessons can I learn about school leadership from practitioners in the field? How can I avoid the same pitfalls and challenges that these heads have experienced? What is the value of NAIS’ Institute for New Heads?
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    • Using Mindfulness and Shared Reflective Practices to Enhance Faculty Culture

      3002

      While content knowledge and pedagogical expertise are crucial, educators also need support for their own emotional and spiritual development.  This interactive session provides a range of practices, including mindfulness, text study, reflective listening, and group sharing, that support teachers and build faculty culture by enhancing reflection, resilience, appreciation, and a shared sense of purpose.
      Presented ByNancy Leaderman, Shalom School (CA)
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      TrackLeadership Development
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      LevelIntroductory
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      Explore What kinds of support do teachers need to be emotionally and spiritually sustained in their work? What exercises and strategies can we do as a faculty that will build resilience, appreciation, and a shared sense of purpose?  How can educators’ own sense of vulnerability and search for meaning make them more effective educators and role models for their students?
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  • Management
    • A Big Audacious Goal: How to Become Carbon Neutral and Save Money in the Process

      3020

      At a time when so many independent schools seek ways to reduce their carbon footprint and increase financial sustainability, discover how becoming a green school may also improve the bottom line. Learn how a combination of efficiencies, onsite energy production, and carbon allowances can add up to carbon neutrality, without increasing your budget.
      Presented BySteve Harrington, Katherine Dinh, and Paul Chapman, Prospect Sierra School (CA); Raphael Rosen, Carbon Lighthouse
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      TrackManagement
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreWhy must schools lead the way in combining environmental and financial sustainability? How can one use a combination of efficiencies, onsite energy production, and carbon allowances to achieve carbon neutrality? How can one achieve carbon neutrality, with no upfront costs and potential short and long-term savings?
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    • Faculty Stories: Reframing the Narrative, Editing the Outcome

      2001

      Building and retaining a strong faculty is critical. Helping teachers reframe their narratives by telling their stories differently can reengage veterans and improve neophytes. Find out how to use the techniques of editing to enrich and enliven faculty by considering perspective, characters, and alternate endings.
      Presented ByDebora Phipps, Moses Brown School (RI) and Launa Schweizer, Brooklyn Heights Montessori School (NY)
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      TrackManagement
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How can I help teachers retire gracefully and without bitterness when they are burned out? How can I best help a new teacher whose high standards for herself mean she cannot enjoy her work? How, as an administrator, can I improve the morale of teachers who tell themselves they are overworked and unappreciated?
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    • Recruiting Chinese Applicants: Understanding Mindset, Challenges, and Engagement

      2024

      As the number of Chinese applicants increases, admissions offices must develop new strategies and tactics to manage this cohort effectively. Explore differences between the Chinese and U.S. education systems, discuss the mindset of Chinese parents and applicants, examine challenges families and schools face, and share best admissions office practices for developing engagement and increasing yield.
      Presented ByNicki Fung, Vericant; Jennifer Welch, Thayer Academy (MA)
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      TrackManagement
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      LevelIntroductory
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      ExploreHow to effectively engage and yield Chinese applicants?  What are some of the market dynamics and parental mindsets driving Chinese applicants to study abroad?  What are the underlying issues leading to fraud in Chinese applicant materials?
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  • The Classroom Experience
    • Modeling Your Thinking: Helping Students Tell Their Stories as Mathematicians

      2009

      How do students tell a story of their math thinking? Whether with the ratio table, bar model, or number line, visual modeling is a key skill of all mathematicians. Teachers play a critical role in helping students develop these powerful representations. Engage in math problem solving, watch video of students working on rich problems, and discuss the work created by these students.
      Presented ByJulie Broderick, The School At Columbia University (NY)
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      TrackThe Classroom Experience
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How do you design rich contextual problems that engage students in meaningful math investigation? What are effective ways to help students document their math thinking with visual models? What is the teacher's role in helping students to develop clear, detailed, and accurate representations of their math thinking?
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    • Task-Centered Assistive Technology

      2016

      Explore task-centered academic goals, supporting assistive tech tools, and assessment ideas while focusing on tasks that middle and high school students face. Too often we try to fix the tool for the student instead of understanding each student and finding the right series of tools that work best for her or him. Continue to think outside the box!
      Presented ByJackie Hersh, Jackie Hersh, Sally Garza, and Jason Sepsi, Lawrence School (OH)
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      TrackThe Classroom Experience
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreWhat does a task-centered activity look like? How can I advocate for myself/ students in using a tool in a task centered activity? What should I consider? When picking out an assistive technology tools and resources, what should I focus on?
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    • The Interactive Constitution: Non-Partisan Civics Education for 21st Century Classrooms

      2020

      This presentation of classroom applications of the National Constitution Center's new, interactive Constitution guides secondary social studies and English teachers through an exploration of how this powerful tool makes the Constitution approachable and meaningful to learners in 21st century classrooms.  The session is of particular value to AP US history and government teachers and teachers whose students will take the SAT.
      Presented ByKerry Sautner, National Constitution Center
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      TrackThe Classroom Experience
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How can teachers and students approach the Constitution on a non-partisan basis? How can technology be utilized to reverse trends of declining civic education? How does the Interactive Constitution prepare students for AP exams and the SAT?
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    • The Power of Teacher Language

      2022

      Learn how teachers can use language — words, tone, and pace — to increase student engagement, build a positive classroom community, create a growth mindset, and teach prosocial behavior by helping children develop confidence, competence, and self-control. Gain many practical tips and samples of effective teacher language to take back to school.
      Presented BySarah Fillion, Responsive Classroom; Earl Hunter, Echo Horizon School (CA)
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      TrackThe Classroom Experience
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      LevelIntroductory
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      ExploreHow is teacher language defined and how does it shape students’ thoughts, feelings, and experiences? What are the tools to help teachers use language to increase student engagement, build a positive classroom community, create a growth mindset, and teach pro-social behavior? What are some examples of strategies and practices teachers can use to support students’ learning and positive behavior with reinforcing language?
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  • The Student Experience
    • Becoming a Relational School: Leveraging Relational Tools to Transform School Culture

      3024

      Do you have an advising program that is stuck in the past and is a source of frustration for faculty, students, and parents?  Come learn from a school that radically shifted their program into one that is crafted around deep engagement, a growth mindset, and solid cross-departmental teams.  When relational resources are deployed effectively, school culture shifts.
      Presented ByAlexandra Lockett and Shoba Farrell, San Francisco University High School (CA) and Ellen Porter Honnet, Stanley H. King Counseling Institute (MA)
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      TrackThe Student Experience
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      LevelIntermediate
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      Explore How can relationships be leveraged to shift school culture and climate? How can a school based on solid relationships lead to deeper and more fulfilling faculty and student engagement? What are daily practices and small acts which promote relational resources in schools?
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    • New Leadership Model: Building and Sustaining Faculty Multicultural Leaders

      2010

      Using case studies examine two initiatives demonstrating a sustained culture of faculty leadership and commitment to multicultural education. Inquiry for Equity, an innovative professional development process, builds collaborative inquiry and self-reflection. Faculty-organized, proactive, schoolwide Teach-Ins arose in response to news about police brutality.
      Presented ByCharlotte Worsley, Courtney Rein, Laurie Williams, Jennifer Starkweather, Dawn Jefferson, and Ben Slater, The Urban School of San Francisco (CA)
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      TrackThe Student Experience
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreHow can I create a faculty professional development program that goes beyond one-day conferences and builds faculty commitment to creating more equitable classroom practices? How can I empower faculty to collaborate in teaching each other about issues of diversity, inclusion and equity? How can I create space and time for faculty to translate their knowledge expertise, and questions  into teach-ins that can responsively inform students  about important current events?
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    • Promoting Student Well-Being

      3018

      Academic rigor has ruled much of the education landscape for the last couple of decades. However, more talk of student balance, health, wellbeing, character, and other elements have been quickly taking over the horizon. These aspects are fundamental to the independent school experience and the missions behind many of our institutions. How are our student faring? What are some of the great practices happening in our schools?
      Presented ByDebra Wilson, National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS); Jonathan Cohen, National School Climate Center; Emily Jones, The Putney School (VT); Scott Bezsylko, Winston Prep (NY); John Gulla, The Edward E. Ford Foundation
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      TrackThe Student Experience
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      LevelIntroductory
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      Explore What is the data on independent school health and wellbeing? What are some great practices independent schools are engaging in? What are some approaches schools should be thinking about to take student health and wellbing into their own corridors?
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    • Redefining Normal: Including Our Youngest Learners in Schoolwide Diversity Initiatives

      2012

      Learn how to bring antibias and diversity work into early childhood classrooms. Creating a new "normal" requires teachers, students, and families to lean into discomfort and reflect on gender, family structure, race, and culture as we share our own stories. Study Pre-K examples as model ways of implementing meaningful lessons that redefine what "normal" means within independent schools.
      Presented BySemeka Smith-Williams and Lynnette Arthur, The Packer Collegiate Institute
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      TrackThe Student Experience
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      LevelIntermediate
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      ExploreHow can I avoid stereotyping on the basis of gender, race, ability, age, class, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, and other social identifiers and encourage my students to avoid stereotyping as well? How can I encourage my class to practice positive and inclusive language and behavior? How can I  share anti-bias work with families to achieve a positive long-lasting results?
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    • Trailblazers from China: Marry School Mission and Cultural Expectations for Asian Students

      2011

      Attracting students from China can significantly enrich the learning experience and create opportunities for cultural awareness in independent schools. Important cultural variations exist within China that can impact students at independent schools differently. Find out what works and what doesn’t from a career educator and business person with significant experience in China.
      Presented ByKathleen McNamara, Seven Hills School (CA); and Mary Wadsworth Darby, Peridot Scholastic Advisors
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      TrackThe Student Experience
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      LevelIntroductory
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      ExploreHow are Chinese students different from typical American students and how do this affect students’ cultural adjustment to life in the independent school? What strategies will help you be more successful in meeting the needs of your students from greater China and managing their parents’ aspirations/expectations? What are the most common mistakes that schools make in dealing with families from China?
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