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INAUGURAL ISSUE

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Teaching & Learning for the 21st Century

2017 SAIS ANNUAL CONFERENCE October 22-24, 2017


A Curriculum to Help Teens Address WELLNESS in These Key Areas:

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HANDLING EMOTIONS

ORGANIZATION

RELATIONSHIPS

REST AND PLAY

CARE OF THE BODY

SPIRITUALITY

ST RESS RESILIENCE

SCHOOL AND WORK

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theteencompass.org


CONTENTS

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Learning How To Learn

Enhancing learning in the classroom

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How one school helped students explore their stories of self

FELLOWSHIP BUILDS DIVERSE FACULTY PROFILE: Alan November

Key questions for hiring new teachers

PROFILE: Dr. Johnnetta Cole The value of creativity and community

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MAKING CHANGES THROUGH DESIGN THINKING

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SAIS DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD

16 8 17 18 The True Value of SelfAwareness

IN BRIEF

Solving the right problem for the right user

Sarah Whiteside

SAIS BOARD OF TRUSTEES 2018 NOMINEES STEM CONNECTS STUDENTS ACROSS CITY AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY EYES WIDE SHUT

Equity and inclusion in leadership

THE THREE E’S

Engagement, empathy, equity

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SAIS ANNUAL CONFERENCE SESSION PREVIEWS PERSPECTIVE: LIFELONG LEARNING & LISTENING

The SAIS magazine is published twice annually. Contact Christina Mimms, director of communications, with any comments: christina@sais.org | (404) 883-5369. SAIS | 6050 Peachtree Parkway, Suite 240-199 | Norcross, GA 30092 | www.sais.org

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IN BRIEF

Bolles’ Anatomy

The Bolles School in Jacksonville, FL, is taking its anatomy classes to a new dimension with the acquisition of an Anatomage table. The highly advanced human dissection table and anatomy visualization system is typically – if not exclusively – seen in hospital or university settings. The only other Anatomage table in Northeast Florida is at The Mayo Clinic, which utilizes one for medical training at the Weaver Simulation Center. Nancy Hazzard, anatomy teacher and chair of the Bolles Science Department, said the acquisition benefits and enhances the entire Bolles academic experience. “We are thrilled to be one of the few high schools in the world to own one of these incredible tools of science,” Hazzard said. “Students will have learning experiences with the table that are usually beyond the normal scope of high school students.” An Anatomage table is designed to help students better understand how the human body works. It is a virtual dissection table based on human cadavers. Students can visualize how the body’s component parts fit and work together, the relationships between anatomical aspects of the body, and the connections between body systems. The device is a staple resource in medical schools, healthcare institutions, and universities. Bolles anatomy students, as well as several faculty and administrators, have visited Mayo’s SIM Center biannually during the past two years as part of an educational partnership. The Anatomage table was one of the highlights of the experience. The school expects their table will inspire students to explore a deeper “We are thrilled to be one education in medicine and science. of the few high schools The table was installed in late March, allowing many in the world to own one student, faculty, parent, and board groups to experience of these incredible tools the Anatomage table in April and May. This past summer, of science,” Hazzard one science teacher used it to demonstrate new lessons at said. “Students will have a weeklong summer camp program open to the community learning experiences with called “Surgical Techniques Camp.” the table that are usually The first Bolles students to utilize the table in the 2017-18 beyond the normal scope school year will be upper school students taking classes in of high school students.” anatomy, AP biology, and biology. Eventually, department leaders and teachers will make the table available to lower and middle school science students via lab visits. Bolles also is considering ways the table can be a resource for partner schools and other medical-based magnet schools in Northeast Florida that might not otherwise have the resources to learn from the table, in addition to local healthcare professionals.

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GPS ON THE MOVE Every school with a foreign language department aims for its students to enjoy an immersion opportunity at some point, either through family travel or a schoolsponsored expedition. At the same time, service learning also is part of many schools’ missions. Students from Girls Preparatory School in Chattanooga, TN, embarked on a journey this past summer that married both service work and language immersion. Led by upper school Spanish teacher Kate Kerekes, eight GPS students took a nine-day trip to Peru. From marveling at the wonders of Machu Picchu to making papier-mâché bins for an ecological preschool, the students enjoyed many different experiences in Peru. In addition to sightseeing, the girls learned about the art and history of the Incas, explored the catacombs, and studied the predominant religions of the country.

From marveling at the wonders of Machu Picchu to making papier-mâché bins for an ecological preschool, the students enjoyed many different experiences. While practicing Spanish whenever possible, the girls performed service work at Yachay Wasi Ollantaytambo, a local preschool in Ollantaytambo, Peru. The preschool, built from reclaimed materials, has a waste-nothing philosophy that the girls experienced firsthand. The students assisted with several projects at Yachay Wasi, including:


One Old Uniform = One Child’s Treasure BY CHRISTINA MIMMS, SAIS As the years pass and students grow, uniforms of all sorts start to expire. Jerseys may get lost or a little worn out, the inventory of used uniforms expands beyond a school’s storage capacities, or teams look for a new style. With that, how can schools extend the life of their usable uniforms? Episcopal High School in Baton Rouge, LA, gives away old athletic shirts as “awards” during youth summer programs, while at Spartanburg Day School in Spartanburg, SC, a faculty member who visits Nicaragua every year takes a batch of old uniforms along to donate to schools in need. In preparation for the construction of a new gym and wellness center at St. Mary’s Episcopal School in Memphis, TN, the school held a sale of old uniforms and spirit wear with all items available for $1 each. The sale was open only to school families and alumni. “We didn’t feel comfortable with the items going to Goodwill, and we didn’t want to give them to our city schools because they have our name on it, not theirs,” said

Sandra Pitts, athletic director. The school was surprised but happy that every item sold. Many students and alumni were delighted to track down and purchase the sports jersey that had their old number on it. Some adults even purchased items to wear themselves. All funds went back into the athletic department. The need for school and athletic uniforms outside the U.S. never ends. A number of SAIS schools partner with Atlanta-based nonprofit The Uniform Project, which collects old school uniforms to donate to schools in Guatemala, Jamaica, Kenya, Honduras, Haiti, and many other countries. The organization supplies church mission groups with uniforms to take on their trips, where they connect with local schools, churches, and orphanages. In many countries, children must have uniforms in order to attend school, but often their families cannot afford to purchase them. The donated uniforms allow children to pursue their education and enable the Atlanta schools to

recycle their uniforms toward a worthy cause. The Uniform Project also accepts donations of old soccer uniforms and cleats. Cape Henry Collegiate School in Virginia Beach, VA, partnered with Innovation: Africa, an Israel-based organization which implements solar and agricultural technologies in African villages, to donate old athletic uniforms. For example, youth soccer teams in Malawi have worn Cape Henry jerseys. In addition, the school’s athletic ambassadors and other student groups who travel internationally frequently take soccer balls, cleats, school T-shirts, and uniforms to give to the many different places they visit. “As companies update the designs on new uniforms, we take the old ones and put them to good use,” said William Fluharty, director of Cape Henry’s Nexus Center for Global Studies. “Sports are a commonality we all share, and it’s a great way to connect our kids to their counterparts around the world and leave a piece of Cape Henry behind.”

Continued from page 2, “GPS On The Move”

• building doors from reclaimed wood; • cutting and sanding blocks from reclaimed wood beams for the teachers and students to use in classrooms; • organizing the workshop; • creating papier-mâché bins from recycled material for teachers’ classrooms; • digging up walkways and roads to make them more accessible by the families and children; and • assisting in gardens. The girls also enjoyed playing games and singing with the preschoolers and teaching them a few basic English phrases. The World Language Department hopes to offer more opportunities like this program for students who wish to travel abroad in the future. The trip was organized through EF Travel and was open to any students who chose to sign up. In the future, interested students will go

through an application process. “We were able to learn about so much of the Peruvian culture as well as see one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World,” Kerekes said. “We were able to really interact with locals, experience the way they interpret sustainability and recycling, and give back to the community in a small way.” “The trip to Peru really opened my eyes and helped me better understand the world we live in today,” said student Ariana Whatley ‘20. “I learned that we as Americans are extremely privileged to live the lives we have with access to many things we consider everyday necessities, while in countries like Peru, these things we consider necessary are hard to come by. I also learned through the gorgeous scenery to have a better appreciation for nature.”

Schools New to SAIS in 2017

• Ascension Episcopal School, Lafayette, LA • Carmel Christian School, Matthews, NC • Legacy Christian Academy, Frisco, TX • Richmond Waldorf School, Richmond, VA • Rocky Mount Academy, Rocky Mount, NC • Savannah Christian Preparatory, Savannah, GA • Visitation Academy, St. Louis, MO

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Heads on the Move

DR. JEFF WILLIAMS King’s Ridge Christian School Alpharetta, GA Dr. Jeff Williams is a seasoned independent school professional with his most recent assignment as head of Second Baptist School in Houston, TX. He earned an undergraduate degree in telecommunications at Baylor University and then attended Denver Seminary, where he received a master’s and full certification as a counselor. His passion of working with students attracted him to the position of middle school counselor at Second Baptist. After earning his doctorate in educational administration, Dr. Williams was appointed to the role of middle school principal, then upper school principal, and in 2009, was named as head. David Rhodes, current KRCS head, will be named head emeritus and will continue his fundraising and campus development role through June 30, 2018, while transitioning the head of school duties to Dr. Williams.

KAREN CUMBERBATCH Carolina Friends School Durham, NC Karen Cumberbatch has a 22-year career in independent school administration, including 20 years in Quaker schools. Most recently, she served as head of upper school at Sandy Spring Friends School in Sandy Spring, MD. Beyond her teaching and administrative experience, Karen has led school-wide strategic planning and implementation, clerked numerous school committees, and organized and developed a wide range of student leadership and staff professional development initiatives. Karen grew up in Jamaica, NY, in a family deeply committed to education. She received her B.A. in Africana studies from Cornell University, and an M.A. in Afro-American studies from UCLA. She also earned a graduate certificate in independent school leadership from Johns Hopkins University and completed the Institute for Engaging Leadership with the Friends Council on Education.

DR. KRISTEN RING Hutchison School Memphis, TN Hutchison’s seventh head of school since 1902 assumed her responsibilities in July. Dr. Kristen Ring has more than 20 years of experience as an educator, administrator, and leader, and was most recently the provost at Bayside Academy in Daphne, AL. Dr. Ring succeeds Dr. Annette Smith, who was the head of school at Hutchison for 17 years and retired after a 50-year career in education. Dr. Ring holds a B.A. in English and an M.A. from Wake Forest University. She earned her Ed.D. in educational leadership from High Point University, focusing on leadership transitions in independent schools. Prior to her tenure at Bayside, Dr. Ring was the director of the Multisensory Academy of Practitioners (MAP), a unique offering for capable students with languagebased learning differences, at Forsyth Country Day School in Winston-Salem, NC. She also brings 15 years in the classroom as an English teacher to her role as head of school.

Top Trends in Advancement 4 SAIS HEADS OF SCHOOL spend approximately 25% of their time fundraising, but how much time is really appropriate? To help answer that and other fundraising questions, Linda McNay of Our Fundraising Search and John Marshall, assistant head of Wesleyan School, conducted an online survey of SAIS member schools. A remarkable 40% responded to help guide them in measuring trends, challenges, and opportunities in independent school fundraising. Survey respondents stated that of all fundraising activities, they want to increase their endowments the most. At the SAIS Annual Conference in October, McNay and Marshall will share ideas to help schools achieve more fundraising success in a session entitled “Top Trends in Advancement.” In addition, McNay will lead a webinar about building endowment on September 28 at 4:00 PM EST. Register at sais.org/webinar.

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“We were thrilled with the response to our survey,” McNay said. “It just shows how important the topic of fundraising is to heads of school.”


Fellowship Builds Diverse Faculty BY KAREN BRAND, DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS, PROVIDENCE DAY SCHOOL, CHARLOTTE, NC As a global school, Providence Day School in Charlotte, NC, seeks to deepen and enrich the programs and initiatives that help bring the school’s mission and core values to life. The ideals of empathy, understanding, and embracing diversity are hallmarks of a PDS education. Supporting those ideals is the head of school’s priority to attract diverse faculty and staff as a way to underscore the school’s commitment to preparing students to be leaders in an increasingly multicultural world. In an effort to increase the diversity of faculty on campus, the school secured a $50,000 matching grant from the E.E. Ford Foundation. By leveraging Providence Day’s leadership position as the only independent school in the nation to host a Children’s Defense Fund Freedom School, the grant established a year-long teaching internship position for a recent college graduate. With the goal of transitioning to a full-time faculty position, this pilot internship is one of many new diversity initiatives. “With our commitment to recruit diverse

faculty, it was important for us to be nimble, flexible, and innovative in order to spot talent,” said Dr. Glyn Cowlishaw, head of school. “We want to build on our Freedom School partnership. Our long-term vision is that we don’t want to just impact these kids for six weeks; we want the impact of Freedom School to resonate on campus for years to come in as many ways as possible.” The position is designed to attract young candidates of color and support them with a salary, housing, full-time employee benefits, and professional development opportunities. The year-long program is purposely structured to give the Fellow a range of experiences, including leading Freedom School activities. The Fellow also is assigned a mentor. This year’s Fellow, Swati Dwibedy, spent her summer serving Providence Day’s six-week long Freedom School by helping manage day-to-day logistics, participating in the daily reading curriculum, attending field trips, and coordinating the filling/distribution

of backpacks for scholars, among other tasks. “Seeing both the administrative side and having the one-on-one quality interaction with the kids, I came to appreciate the impact we have on them,” explained Dwibedy. Over the course of a school year, it is intended that the Fellow would spend approximately three months in each division gaining classroom experience. However, the program also offers flexibility. Based on Dwibedy’s personal interests in science and religion, the majority of her time will focus in the upper school, with a rotation in lower and middle school. PDS intends to fully fund the Freedom School Fellow position following the conclusion of the matching grant monies. On a campus where one in four students is a student of color, Providence Day School recognizes it must work to mirror that diversity in its personnel. All schools can help students become empathetic leaders by building diverse classrooms led by people who reflect a variety of different cultures and ways of life.

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PROFILE: ALAN NOVEMBER SENIOR PARTNER & FOUNDER NOVEMBER LEARNING SAIS Annual Conference Keynote Address Tuesday, October 24, 9:00 AM Alan November thrives on confirming and challenging educators’ thoughts about what’s possible in the world of teaching and learning. More than anything, he is a teacher at heart, with a wealth of experience teaching learners of all ages. November is an international leader in education technology. He began his career as an oceanography teacher and dorm counselor at an island reform school for boys in Boston Harbor. He has been an alternative high school director, computer coordinator, technology consultant, and university lecturer. He has helped schools, governments, and industry leaders improve the quality of education through technology. His areas of expertise include planning across curriculum, staff development, new school design, community building, and leadership development. Alan was named one of the nation’s 15 most influential thinkers of the decade by Tech and Learning magazine. His writing includes numerous articles and best-selling books, including his most recent title Who Owns the Learning?. Alan was co-founder of the Stanford Institute for Educational Leadership Through Technology and was selected as one of the original five Christa McAuliffe Educators. Audiences enjoy Alan’s humor and wit as he pushes the boundaries of how to improve teaching and learning.

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WHAT IS THE ADDED VALUE OF A TEACHER IN THE AGE OF THE INTERNET? THE DEMANDS ON TEACHERS TODAY DIFFER GREATLY FROM THOSE OF 10

OR 20 YEARS AGO. THE ROLE OF THE

TEACHER IS MORE SOPHISTICATED IN

SOME WAYS: CONNECTED, DIAGNOSTIC, INVENTIVE, AND COLLABORATIVE.

BY CHRISTINA MIMMS, SAIS

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eachers today are leading students who also are very different from students in the past. As the teacher’s role is redefined, how can schools continue to attract solid candidates? In addition, schools may need to revise their practices for evaluation, staff development planning, the role of the learner, curriculum, and assessment. Education technology leader and veteran educator Alan November offers key questions useful for both hiring new teachers and developing current ones for the next 10 years. “Teachers are the single biggest investment a school makes, and the greatest resource,” November said. As schools essentially write new job descriptions for their teachers, and new criteria for candidates, one question Novem-


PROFILE ber suggested asking ment opportunities, a “Teachers are the is, “How do you teach collegial and collaborasingle biggest students to learn what tive community, support you don’t know?” for a variety of devices investment a school “In the past we valand software, and makes, and the ued teachers for their efficient systems that greatest resource.” knowledge,” November streamline administrasaid. “Now they need to tive tasks. Can a school demonstrate how they learn things they offer what teachers want? don’t know.” As schools hire and develop faculty Essentially, they need to show students to serve the needs of today’s learners how to learn – how to use online sources effectively and ethically, and how to organize their data. In the past, teaching candidates might have been asked to share their best lesson plan. Now, they might be tested with a particular problem to solve and asked how they would go about teaching it. “Some people would just fall apart,” November said. “Other people will excel.” And schools may want more from their new hires than a degree and a certification. Schools want people who know how to work with colleagues and contribute to their peers. What else do they bring to the table to enhance the school community? “What does your global network look like?” is another of November’s essential questions. As more people launch into the professional world through teaching, and through organizations such as Teach for America, some may not teach as a long-term career. Some new graduates may teach for five years and move on to something else. The number of jobs and/ or careers that people experience in a lifetime is increasing. Rarely does someone stay in one place for 20+ years, even teachers. “People want to try new things,” November said. And some will try new endeavors even within the world of education – teaching abroad or teaching in an online community. Some people will learn from teachers they never meet face-to-face. “Some people will be horrified by this but we’ve gone through other changes,” November said. “We’ll be fine.” For those who seek teaching positions, candidates may be looking for certain qualities in their potential school employer: significant professional develop-

as well as the school’s mission, finding the right people can challenge even the world’s greatest matchmaker. The head of school is the person to lead that effort, according to November. “Heads are the most important variable in creating a culture for innovation,” he said. Learn more about November’s seven key questions at the SAIS Annual Conference, October 22-24, 2017, in Atlanta.

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STUDENTS MUST BE PREPARED FOR AN INCREASINGLY DIVERSE, COMPLEX, AND INTERCONNECTED WORLD. CREATIVITY AND COMMUNITY ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN EVER, ESPECIALLY IN A WORLD SO DEPENDENT ON TECHNOLOGY.

PREPARING TOMORROW’S LEADERS: LESSONS FROM MY JOURNEY

BY CHRISTINA MIMMS, SAIS

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s one who has enjoyed relationships with independent schools for quite some time, Dr. Johnnetta Cole is excited to address the SAIS community at the Annual Conference. She attended a Methodist middle school and her stepson attended Greensboro Day School in Greensboro, NC. And as a former president of Atlanta’s Spelman College, “Anytime I can come back to Atlanta, I’m going!” she said. “And I enjoy speaking because it requires that I spend time thinking about what I think is important.” Dr. Cole considers herself to be a lifelong learner. She received a Ph.D. in anthropology with a specialization in African studies from Northwestern University and has held teaching and administrative positions in anthropology, women’s studies, and African American studies at several colleges and universities. In addition to her presidency at Spelman, she served as the president of Bennett College, giving her the distinction as the only

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person to hold the presidency at both of the historically black colleges for women in the United States. “One of the things that we adults do is tell young folk what they should do. I want to avoid that. My talk will be far more inviting,” she said. “The lessons are not in some abstract form but draw on the experiences, trials, and triumphs in my own life. It will be authentic evidence of what might be helpful in serving and educating young students.” Students must be prepared for an increasingly diverse, complex, and interconnected world. Creativity and community are more important than ever, especially in a world so dependent on technology. “The concept of community is being not only challenged but redefined. In a world that is so technology dependent, how can we create a community?” Dr. Cole asked. “We can’t turn this around. Rather than bemoaning it, how do we figure out how to


PROFILE

build and sustain a community? How do we rethink and reorganize? How do we meet that challenge of engaging them?” Some might say that technology drives people apart while others believe it brings people together. In some cases, technology provides people with opportunities they might not otherwise enjoy. For example, students who are unable to attend a traditional school on a physical campus can earn degrees online. “For community, the idea is fairly old school – a setting in which there are teachers and learners, constantly teaching and learning,” Dr. Cole said. “For students who are unable to have that old school experience, an online education is better than none at all.” As schools re-craft their concept of community to serve 21st century students, they also must examine their priorities. What aspects of curriculum need to change? What type of training “The concept of do faculty need? Where do we go from here? community is being STEM, or STEAM, is a hot not only challenged subject on many campuses. but redefined. Some schools have launched In a world that entire campaigns and built new is so technology facilities around STEM efforts. dependent, how “There is a need for us to prepare our young folk to be more can we create a proficient in STEM because we community?” know our nation needs them to do that. Those are fields that will help them to make a good living,” Dr. Cole said. While focusing a keen eye on specific aspects of curriculum or school life, schools must look at the big picture. “To prepare students to live a good life requires some appreciation for human creativity and the ability to express one’s own creativity,” said Dr. Cole. “Education, when done well, prepares a student to help change the world.” Learn more from Dr. Cole at her keynote address at the SAIS Annual Conference, October 22-24, 2017, in Atlanta.

PROFILE: DR. JOHNNETTA COLE PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT COOK ROSS SAIS Annual Conference Keynote Address Monday, October 23, 4:30 PM Dr. Johnnetta Cole is a principal consultant with Cook Ross, a consulting firm that provides solutions to organizations in the areas of diversity, inclusion, cultural competency, leadership development, and organizational change management. Before assuming her current position, she served for eight years as director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. Cole received a Ph.D. in anthropology with a specialization in African studies from Northwestern University. Dr. Cole was the first African American to serve as the chair of the board of United Way of America. She formerly served on the corporate boards of Home Depot, Merck, and Nation’s Bank South, and was the first woman to serve on the board of Coca-Cola Enterprises. She currently serves on the board of Martha’s Table, an organization in Washington, DC, that provides support for children, families, and communities. She is a past president of the Association of Art Museum Directors and currently co-chairs the American Alliance of Museum’s Working Group on Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion. She is a fellow of the American Anthropological Association and a member of the National Academy of Arts and Sciences. Throughout her career, and in her published work, speeches, and community service, Dr. Cole has consistently addressed issues of race, gender, and all other systems of inequality. She has authored and edited several books and numerous articles, received numerous awards, and is the recipient of 64 honorary degrees.

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Learning How to Learn BY CONNIE WHITE, DIRECTOR OF LEARNING DESIGN & INNOVATION, WOODWARD ACADEMY, COLLEGE PARK, GA

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n our society, there is some debate about the purpose of schools. Many of our school mission statements include statements about preparing students with the essential skills needed for a changing world. Yet, for many decades in most western countries, we have sought academic achievement in only a few subjects — reading, math, and science. For example, the PISA assessment — which is often used to judge the success of an educational system — tests 15-year-olds in reading, math, and science across 72 countries. Though learning and achievement are related, schools for the most part strive to help students gain the strategies and skills of learning how to learn. This article will highlight several effective perspectives and suggestions to enhance learning in the classroom, especially focusing on the work from John Hattie and Gregory Donoghue. As we think about a structure for the process of learning, Hattie and Donoghue discuss the differences between surface learning, deep learning, and learning transfer. “Surface learning refers more to the content and underlying skills; deep learning to the relationships between,

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and extensions of, ideas; and transfer to the proficiency to apply learning to new problems and situations.” Most of the time, a student must have sufficient surface knowledge before they can move to deep learning and then be able to transfer their understandings to new circumstances (2016). When acquiring surface knowledge, effective strategies include organizing, summarizing, underlining, and note-taking. Scaffolding previous learning is an important part of this process. The consolidation of surface learning requires the investment of effort, deliberate practice, and the internalization of feedback (Hattie, et al. 2016). In the book, Make it Stick: The Science of Successful Learning, the authors suggest several tips to consolidate learning (Brown, Roediger, McDaniel 2014): • Rewrite the concepts in your own words in the form of questions. • Then, try to identify connections with previous learning and other examples outside of your experience. • Practice retrieving the material from memory by creating self-quizzes. • Space your study sessions on different

Though learning and achievement are related, schools for the most part strive to help students gain the strategies and skills of learning how to learn.

days and interweave the practice with different topics. • Try to solve problems before you know the solution. • Create a chart or mind-map on how the ideas fit together and how they are related. • Consider using mnemonic devices. The journal article by Butler, Marsh, Slavinsky, and Baraniuk highlights several standard instructional practices and the instructional interventions that result in significant student learning gains (2014). Repeated Retrieval Practice: • Standard Practice: Students solved only a single set of problems for each topic. • Intervention: Students solved three sets of problems on each topic. Spacing: • Standard Practice: After material was covered, it was not revisited on the homework assignment.


The ability to consolidate deeper learning can be enhanced by seeking dependable help from others as well as peer tutoring.

• Intervention: Practice on the three sets of problems was distributed over three weeks. Timely Feedback: • Standard Practice: Feedback was available one week after assignment deadline. • Intervention: Feedback was accessible immediately after the assignment deadline. Required Feedback Viewing: • Standard Practice: Feedback viewing is optional. • Intervention: Feedback viewing required to receive credit for the assignment. When students set goals for their learning and have clear ideas of what success looks like, they are able to acquire deep learning. They have high levels of self-regulation and metacognition, and are equipped to choose from among multiple strategies to achieve their learning goals. Students then can make meaning, relating, and extending ideas beyond what they have learned in the surface phase. Examples of successful strategies for acquiring

deep learning include elaboration and organization, concept mapping, and metacognitive strategies. Students consolidate deep learning using strategies such as self-questioning, self-verbalizing, self-explanation, evaluation and reflection, problem solving, and critical thinking techniques. The ability to consolidate deeper learning can be enhanced by seeking dependable help from others as well as peer tutoring. Students learn to collaborate by listening and speaking, so they can see what they know deeply, what they do not know, and what they need to figure out. The key to the transfer of learning is the ability to detect similarities and differences. Critically thinking about the patterns, similarities, and differences enable the transfer to a new task. An interesting side note is that it is much more effective to teach “soft skills” or “21st century skills” within a content area rather than on their own or in some type of study skills course. Hattie and Donoghue also suggest that learning will be enhanced when students 1) gain an overall big picture of what is to

be learned 2) have an idea of the success criteria for the upcoming lessons and 3) are clear from the beginning about what it means to master the lessons. It is helpful for students to see the big picture of what is to be learned before teaching begins. When teachers work with students to create a concept map of the main ideas that will be addressed, and then facilitate a discussion about how the ideas relate, it leads to higher-level or deep learning. When students understand the criteria used for judging their work and when the learning goals have been achieved, learning is heightened. Students are often aware of the learning goals, but do not know how the teacher will grade their work performance. When students are aware of how, specifically, they will be assessed and what success looks like, they will be better prepared to select the appropriate study strategy (2016). As educators, if our assessments only require the retention of detail, then the lower-level, surface learning strategies will be more effective. If our intention is to promote deeper learning with the goal of applying this learning to new problems and conditions, then the higher-level strategies are also needed. Learning transfer is enhanced if students are taught how to identify similarities and differences between situations. An important reminder is that we should change up our learning strategies, considering that one strategy may not be best for all purposes.

Brown, P. C., Roediger, H. L., & McDaniel, M. A. (2014). Make it stick: the science of successful learning. Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. Butler, A. C., Marsh, E. J., Slavinsky, J. P., & Baraniuk, R. G. (2014). Integrating Cognitive Science and Technology Improves Learning in a STEM Classroom. Educational Psychology Review, 26(2), 331-340. doi:10.1007/s10648-014-9256-4

Hattie, J. A., & Donoghue, G. M. (2016, August 10). Learning strategies: a synthesis and conceptual model. Retrieved July 12, 2017, from https:// nature.com/articles/npjscilearn201613 FA L L 2 0 1 7 | SA I S.ORG

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The True Value of Self-Awareness BY SUE RAMSEY, JOE TROJAN, MICHELLE ZELAYA & TOM BOOKER DEANS OF CANNON SCHOOL, CONCORD, NC

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e’ve all been stuck at a party near “that guy” who likes to drone on about his job, his awesome house or car, how accomplished his kids are, et cetera ad nauseam. Most of us will do anything to avoid spending time near anyone like that. Survey a roomful of people and you’ll never get more than a tiny minority who will claim that they enjoy talking about themselves. Culturally, we find talking about ourselves distasteful, and yet it is a highly important skill required at some very key points in our lives. Those who do it poorly are wholly forgettable, and those who do it well are memorable to the admissions office, future employers, and first dates. Most schools or employers want to know who people are as individuals, what inspires them, excites them, and helps them to work well with others. They are less enthused to hear the number of leadership positions one has held, how many service hours have been compiled, or how many seasons one played a sport. Too often when our students are asked to talk about themselves, they fall into the trap of reading off their resume. If you have worked in the world of admissions or have ever asked students to write a paper about themselves, you see this with regularity. The rare student who is thoughtful about who they are as a learner, leader, or person is the one who stands out in this world. The student who knows himself well and can talk at length about his strengths and weaknesses draws others to himself. This reality was crystallized for us a few years ago when we conducted a year-end review of our student life activities and our student body president shared that the toughest interview question she ever faced was, “Tell me about yourself.” Our student body president was, like many independent school

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student leaders, highly impressive. She had a deep and rich experience in our upper school, including trips to China and India, the founding of a robust Relay for Life club after the early death of her father due to cancer, and an academic career that put her at the top of her class. This was the type of student who had done a great deal, and experienced a consequential life thus far. If it was a challenge for her to talk about herself, we surmise it is a daunting task for the majority of our students. Dialoguing about oneself requires pausing and diving deep into who you are. Our students are often so task-focused that they rarely allow the time for the self-reflection essential to understanding self. In 2008, we decided to explore Strengthsfinder 2.0 by Tom Rath as our summer reading assignment. We asked our students to take the Strengthsfinder assessment, which required answering 180 questions about themselves over a 45-60 minute period. Their answers to this battery of questions generated a list of five top strengths out of a possible 34; for example, students might be Futuristic, Achiever, Developer, or Context. Students then read about the qualities of those strengths and interviewed their friends and family to see if the report aligned with the experience of those closest to them. While our original intention was to help our students better understand themselves as learners, we realized the power of this simple test to help students tell their story in a unique way. The experience was so powerful that we quickly decided this was not going to be a one-off summer read in 2008, but something that we would make a distinct and valuable part of our culture. Moving forward, all of our new students, teachers, and every freshman would take the Strengthsfinder assessment as part of their Cannon School experience. At that time, one of our English teachers was using another tool called the True Colors personality test to help divide her students into cooperative groups. Designed by Don Lowry, this inventory segregates students into four primary groups


or temperaments with overlapping characteristics and an assigned color. Greens are data-driven and highly rational. Golds are known for their love of systems and organization. Orange is the color of those who live spontaneously and look for fun. Blue is the color of folks high in empathy and a need to get along with others. As with Strengthsfinder, we discovered the power of self-knowledge and committed to training a few of our teachers to become certified True Colors facilitators who would provide testing for all of our students and teachers every year. Since those days, we have added a larger battery of tests, including Do What You Are, Myers-Briggs, and a Learning Styles inventory. As with any ambitious program, we soon discovered that many of our students, while they had a rich series of opportunities for self-awareness as well as a host of data points, they still had trouble connecting the dots. Fortunately for us, our college counseling team who oversaw some of our self-assessment testing, had an interest in collaborating with our work on selfknowledge as a means of helping our seniors tell their story. The “Telling Your Story” experience began with our students creating a comprehensive document that assembled the results of all of their personality tests

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over their time in our upper school. They were given time to reflect and asked to generate a 140-character tweet summarizing who they were, followed by a one-page reflection that expanded on that tweet. The culminating piece was a rehearsed and performed 3-minute monologue that told their story. Frankly, this experience required a lot of ungraded work at a time when our students thought there were better ways to spend their time, in spite of our regular explanations of the value of this exercise. However, once our seniors were finished and able to reflect on their progress, they let us know that it was a highly valuable activity and that we should have started it sooner with more frequent touch points. The Cannon School class of 2018 will enter their senior year having assembled all of their relevant self-awareness data, reflection, and tweet. They had time over their summer break to assemble a thoughtful story of self and in the early fall we will ask them to share their story, record it, and post it on the college social media platform, ZeeMee. Sharing your story with others is invaluable. It is a gift that gives to both the sharer and recipient. A great deal of insight is learned and it can be the difference between a superficial meeting and one that is rich and meaningful. It is essential that we foster an environment that encourages the story of our students. It is crucial that we allow time for our students to learn about themselves and to reflect on what it means for their life as a learner and individual. We have learned over the years that we have to be highly intentional about helping our students recognize the challenge of this project and provide them opportunities and information essential to ensure their success.

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Making Changes Through Design Thinking

  hen schools pose the question “How might we…?” to their communities, they begin the process of change through design thinking. Perhaps they want to alter their daily schedule to improve instruction. Maybe they want to change their entire admission procedure. Or they just need a better solution for overflow parking. At the Woodward Summit for Transformative Learning, held this past July at Woodward Academy in College Park, GA, attendees explored the topic of design thinking in both a keynote address and breakout session led by Scott Sanchez, vice president, innovation at First Data in Atlanta. “You want to solve the right problem for the right user,” Sanchez said. “And sometimes come up with things people couldn’t imagine.” Scheduling is a prime example of a school function that needs design thinking. How do you move 600 students from one place to another, seven or more times per day? How do you schedule 6-year-olds vs. 16-year-olds? How do you accommodate their space requirements or their technology needs? How do you

BY CHRISTINA MIMMS, SAIS

build in meeting times or planning periods for teachers? How do you allow enough time between classes for travel across campus? And how do you feed so many people without starting lunch at 9:30 AM? Start the conversation with: How might we … ? I wish … I wonder … I think … From there, the essential ingredient that design thinkers need is empathy. “Focus on your user and their needs,” Sanchez explained. Involving different groups of people – administrators, teachers, and even students – will bring lots of issues and, ultimately, ideas to the

“Start small, and learn from your work, even if it’s not perfect,” Sanchez said. “You have to be open to not knowing exactly where things will end up.”

table for discussion and eventual change. Right now, perhaps the sophomores don’t have enough time to change clothes at the end of PE class and travel from the gym across campus to their science class, located on the third floor of the upper school. Or maybe the guest parking lot needs to be moved from the far side of campus closer to the auditorium, where the majority of parent meetings are held. Empathize with the users, define their needs, “ideate” how to solve their problems, develop a prototype, and rigorously test before implementing any type of change. Small groups can make for great test subjects.

Getting Started In Your School

Woodward Summit for Transformative Learning keynote speaker, Scott Sanchez, vice president, innovation at First Data.

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1. Learn it... really. 2. Introduce new language; let it catch fire. 3. Find a space and get started. 4. Try some small design thinking behavior in your everyday work. 5. Try one activity in class and learn from it. 6. Create and run a design challenge. 7. Get connected to the community.


SAIS Distinguished Service Award: Sarah Whiteside Head of Altamont School, Birmingham, AL

Sarah Whiteside began her career in 1978 as a Latin teacher at Altamont School. In 2003, she was named assistant head and head of the middle school. For the past 11 years, she has served as head of school and will retire at the conclusion of the 2017-18 academic year. Under her leadership, Altamont successfully completed a $10 million campaign that supported the school library, a center for the arts, new athletics and wellness facilities, and additional funds for scholarship and endowment. She has overseen the launch of a 1:1 laptop program as well as a new computer science program, a center for ethical leadership, and teacher research grants. Earlier this year, Altamont became the first school in Birmingham to install a solar array to reduce energy consumption on campus. In recent years, the school has reached capacity on enrollment, with a waiting list in several grade levels. Whiteside has served on the SAIS Board of Trustees since January 2015. She received her undergraduate degree in 1969 from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College with a major in Latin. The following year she received an M.A. in classical archaeology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Whiteside’s husband Penny is a longtime employee of the University of Alabama-Birmingham, and both of their children are Altamont graduates: Penn ’93 and Margaret ’99.

SAIS Board of Trustees: 2018 Nominees

DuBose Egleston has served as the head of Porter-Gaud School in Charleston, SC, for the past eight years. He served as director of technology there from 20002006 and as assistant head for finance and operations from 2006-2009. He received a B.S. from Furman University and an M.B.A. from The Citadel. He has served on the boards of the Palmetto Association of Independent Schools and the National Association of Episcopal Schools.

Dr. Jeffrey Mitchell has served as the head of Currey Ingram Academy in Franklin, TN, since 2014. Previously, he was head of Tuscaloosa Academy in Tuscaloosa, AL, from 2010-2014. He holds a B.A. from the University of Winnipeg, plus a master’s and Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia. He has served on the SAIS Accreditation Committee and is a regular contributor to SAIS HeadLines.

Scott Wilson has served as head of his alma mater, Baylor School in Chattanooga, TN, since 2009. He previously was head of Brookstone School and Valwood School. He is the current board chair of the Tennessee Association of Independent Schools and twice served on the board of the Georgia Independent School Association. He earned a B.A. at the University of Georgia and an M.Ed. from the University of South Carolina. FA L L 2 0 1 7 | SA I S.ORG

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STEM Connects Students Across City BY CHRISTINA MIMMS, SAIS

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hen high school students at Nashville’s Franklin Road Academy were offered the opportunity to open their campus to local middle school students, they jumped at the chance to be part of the school’s inaugural Summer Innovation Institute. By sharing STEM, design thinking, and high-tech equipment with students from the city schools, the high schoolers were able to share their passions as well as expand their own problem-solving abilities. Sophomore Tennent Grace Smith was one of the four student leaders at the weeklong sessions, held for three weeks this past summer. “I really liked bringing the metro students into our lab,” Smith said. “I have always loved math and science, and I loved helping girls in particular find the fun parts of science. It was also a great opportunity for me to learn from the kids.” FRA provided transportation and lunch for ten students and one teacher from Metro Nashville Public Schools per week. Students were challenged to create a product over the course of five days using 3D printers, laser cutters, computer software programs, robotics equipment, and drones. “The concept was to use more design thinking and create a product to benefit society,” said Rod Jones, FRA history

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“I have always loved math and science, and I loved helping girls in particular find the fun parts of science. It was also a great opportunity for me to learn from the kids.”

Tennent Grace Smith, 10th grade student leader

teacher and director of the institute. “Our students got to become the teacher and teach other students the things they love.” Several students took an existing product and worked to improve it, while others designed from scratch. For example, one student team redesigned the “fidget spinner.” Students went through multiple rounds of planning, prototypes, and trial-and-error. “Failing forward” was a common theme. At the end of the week, students presented

their creations and discussed their process. The school plans to continue the institute for the next two summers but also may visit the metro schools during the school year. As a parting gift from FRA, each school that participated in the summer institute received a claw robot kit for students to assemble and work with on their own campuses. The institute and the makerspace on campus were funded by a grant from the Scarlett Family Foundation with a goal to expand STEM education in the community. The program is free for public school students to attend.


Around the World in a Day

BY CHRISTINA MIMMS, SAIS

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fter a group of parents approached officials at Greensboro Montessori School in North Carolina about doing more to share their international heritage within the community, the school saw a wonderful opportunity to enhance multicultural education. For the past three years, school families have enjoyed a daylong International Fair with food, dance, and cultural displays hosted on campus. With more than 20 languages spoken in the homes of their current families, many students and parents were curious about others’ cultures. The 2017 event held in January featured displays representing 15 different countries. Booths were created by both parents and teachers. The day included an assembly attended by the entire student population. Students performed in a flamenco dance choreographed by one of the Spanish teachers, and the featured performance was by Akapoma Traditional Music, led by a native of Ghana. The fair concluded with a lunch prepared by middle school culinary arts students. The menu included arroz con pollo, cabbage salad, and flan.

“This is an event that brings our community together and allows families to learn about one another.”

a classroom to make a more detailed presentation. For example, if a display ties in with what a grade level is currently studying in history, the teacher might invite that parent to speak in the classroom. “That makes for a deeper experience for the students,” Bogan said. “It is a great opportunity for parents to share and showcase the diversity within the school community. We believe there is no better educational environment we can give our children than one of acceptance, inclusivity, understanding, curiosity, and sharing.”

Students from Greensboro Montessori School perform a traditional Spanish flamenco at the 2017 International Fair. “This is an event that brings our community together and allows families to learn about one another,” said Andi Bogan, director of family relations & communication. “And it helps parents feel like contributing members of our community to share their experiences.” In helping to organize the fair each year along with the Community Association, Bogan invites parents to participate in the fair. Faculty also recommend specific parents for the school to contact. Typically, families showcase their own personal heritage but sometimes those who recently traveled abroad will set up a display to highlight what they discovered on their trip. Often the fair serves as a springboard for a parent to visit

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EYES WIDE SHUT: EQUITY AND INCLUSION IN LEADERSHIP

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s independent school educators, we are acutely aware that the most recent statistics from NAIS tell us that women continue to be underrepresented in headship positions. According to national data, the percentage of women serving in the head of school role has increased by only one percent since 1999. Yet, more than two-thirds of our teaching staff are women. In the corporate world, the disproportionate number of women occupying the C-suite is often explained as a pipeline issue. There are not enough qualified women in the pipeline for corporate America’s leadership to represent gender equity, but in independent schools, the data indicates no problem with our pipeline. Presentations about this issue generally The most recent focus on personal leadership journeys, statistics from NAIS the current landscape, and leadership tell us that women tools women need to acquire to be seen continue to be as a viable “non-traditional” candidate. underrepresented in At the SAIS 2017 Annual Conference, headship positions. Laura Reed and Stephanie Keaney from the North Carolina Association of Independent Schools will take a different approach and lead an interactive session focused on the question, “If we, as independent school leaders, are committed to developing an equitable and inclusive leadership model, what are the principles of good practice that would guide our efforts?” This session will invite both conversation and examination aimed at building a deeper understanding of the variables that contribute to the undeniable intersection between gender and the culture of independent school leadership. The value and hope for this collaborative regional opportunity is for all voices to be present: current administrators, trustees, and consultants who are committed to equitable leadership within independent school education. Just as Mother Teresa once said, “You can do what I cannot do. I can do what you cannot do. Together we can do great things.”

END WORLD HUNGER ONE BOOK AT A TIME

THE THREE E’S

Engagement, empathy, and equity

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hen educators think of everything they want students to learn in a 21st century environment, the three R’s barely scratch the surface. Not only are they teaching world history, foreign language, STEAM, and other core subjects, they also want students to know how to communicate, how to lead and serve others, and how to build relationships. Enter the three E’s: engagement, empathy, and equity. The Children’s School in Atlanta articulated this framework to capture their commitment to their students learning by engaging deeply in their communities. At the 2017 SAIS Annual Conference, the TCS middle grades team and administration will share how they teach through community engagement, still addressing curriculum standards, and showing students the “why” behind their schoolwork by moving them out of the classroom and into the community as much as possible. Last year, the students spent about half of their time off campus in the first month of school as they immersed themselves in the Clarkston community, partnering with the International Rescue Center and New American Pathways, two organizations that help successfully relocate refugees. Students worked alongside families, taught English to adults, helped with childcare, and, in doing so, learned about the socio-political causes of displacement, the histories of affected regions, the biology of stress and malnutrition, and how to develop entrepreneurial solutions to community needs. “We want kids to be able to make an impact in the world,” said Allen Broyles, assistant head of school. “By engaging directly with communities outside of the school, they develop empathy for the experience of others, and from that, develop a drive toward equity. These relationships are not about charity but about partnership. Many middle grades students may ask, ‘Why do I have to learn this stuff?’ For TCS students, their learning is immediately put to use to help unpack and understand their community.” Broyles said that model can be replicated at other schools, whether they are located in urban, suburban, or rural areas, as long as a school is willing to look creatively at their use of time. TCS teachers work collaboratively to design the experiences for the students and craft a schedule that works during the school day. Learn more about the essential E’s at the SAIS Annual Conference, October 22-24, 2017, in Atlanta.

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Students from The Children’s School teach advanced English to refugees at the International Rescue Committee.


ANNUAL CONFERENCE BREAKOUTS Governance & Leadership • The Symphony: Governance in Sync with Leadership Donna Orem, NAIS • Top Trends in Advancement John Marshall, Wesleyan School, and Linda McNay, Our Fundraising Search • Eyes Wide Shut: Equity and Inclusion in Leadership Laura Reed, NCAIS • The Art of Buy-In: Intentional Culture Creation Pam Herath, Strive: How You Lead Matters Roundtables • Navigating Complicated Legal Issues of the Hiring Process Small Schools Candice Pinares-Baez, Fisher Phillips Special Needs • Compensating Independent School Heads Schools Rob Hogan, Atlanta Girls’ School Diversity • Leading from the Middle Lower Schools Erin Cohn, Leadership & Design Middle Schools • Data and Analysis for School Leaders Upper Schools Hilary LaMonte, NAIS

Communication & Marketing

2017 SAIS Annual Conference October 22-24 | Atlanta, GA sais.org/AC

• Encouraging Meaningful Feedback from Parents to Teachers Lee Hark, Durham Academy • Boosting Enrollment Through Inbound Marketing Lesa Doerstling, RenWeb, and Courtney Haindel, Northlake Christian School • Course Correction: Righting Your Reputational Ship Christina Albetta, Crane MetaMarketing • How to Win Students and Influence Parents: What Really Motivates a Family to Apply Heather Hoerle, The Enrollment Management Association

Resources & Support Systems

• Religion and Spirituality: Opportunities and Obstacles to Inclusion Ann Mellow, National Association of Episcopal Schools • Growing Social Intelligence Jennifer Hannah, High Meadows School • The ABC’s of Motivation and Healthy Culture Michelle Bostian, Greensboro Day School, and Damian Kavanagh, MISBO • Counseling Basics for School Leaders Ken Rogers, Charlotte Christian School • Student-Centered Leadership: The Miree Approach Katherine Berdy, Altamont School • Financial Aid for Impact: Which Outcomes Matter Most? Mark Mitchell, NAIS • Lessons Learned: Preventing Sexual Abuse in Independent Schools Candace Collins, Praesidium

Teaching & Learning

• Alternative Models of Assessment, Crediting, and Transcripts Scott Looney, Hawken School, and Trish Russell, Mastery Transcript Consortium • 21st Century School: It’s Not About Computers Bill Simmer, ISM • 2017 SAIS Collaboration Grants: Sharing Solutions and Modeling Best Practices Providence Day School, Shorecrest Preparatory School, St. Andrew’s School, St. George’s Independent School, Swift School • Engagement, Empathy, and Equity in Action Allen Broyles, Katie Jefferies, Kelly Lyn, Todd Wass, and Sally Wood, The Children’s School • Private/Public Partnership: Designing Shared Experiences Michael Magno and Ryan Welsh, Providence Day School Barry Sherman, Bruns Academy • Innovation Lab: Development and Implementation Jay Hugo, 3north, and Cary Jamieson, The Steward School • Creating a Climate and Culture for Success Kim Bearden, Ron Clark Academy

Every meal is a moment to eat, share andconnect. Rea lchefscooking realfood Fresh,local& sustainablefoods a sthe standard Nutrition a nd culinary education Studentengagement A legacy of innovation

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Nourishing a Brighter Future

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PERSPECTIVE

Lifelong Learning & Listening

The 7 Essential Questions

GUEST COLUMN BY DAVID SKEEN HEAD OF HARDING ACADEMY, NASHVILLE, TN

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n October 2015, I was selected as the next head of Harding Academy. It was the fulfilment of a dream. As a new first-time head, I spent a lot of time thinking about the best way to enter into a new community in a way that abided by the culture but also introduced myself as an educator in a concrete way. My main focus was to answer the question: What drives me as an educator? I wanted to get at the essential philosophy that was already guiding my approach to education. Consequently, I was able to capture this philosophy by developing what I now call the seven essential questions. An “essential” question is one that is open-ended, continual, inquiry-based, and requires higher-order thinking.

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1. What does it mean to grow up in a flat world? 2. What does it mean to live in an age of insecurity? 3. What does it mean to be an educator in the 21st century? 4. What is the future of independent schools? 5. How will the exponential rate of change in technology impact our lives? 6. What does it mean to raise good kids who will come of age in 2035? 7. How can our independent schools educate and inspire young people to become thoughtful, creative, lifelong learners and self-disciplined, responsible, caring citizens? The goal for my first year was to listen, learn, and live the life cycle of the school, while delving deep to identify core values to preserve and areas for growth. I challenged myself to live in the moment and not be too reactive. With my goal set, I embarked on a dedicated listening tour. From July to November, I sought to build relationships not just through my daily work, but also through an intense schedule of meetings with every member of the leadership team, faculty, staff, and board, along with former faculty, alumni, five of the school’s seven founders, and more than 100 current parents. By the time April arrived, I had more than 250 meetings’ worth of information. But because I asked the same questions, in the same order, of everyone, I had a way of categorizing the data. The three questions, and examples of what I learned, were: Q. What are three things you would never change? From this I saw quickly that our community valued our PK through 8 model, our balance of challenge and nurture, and our size. These things are fundamental to what defines Harding. Q. What are three things Harding doesn’t do that you hope it would consider doing sooner rather than later? This was a great question to glean

important priorities for the school and determine how much support for some of these changes may already be in place. Q. Based on global, national, or Nashville trends, what are opportunities you see for the school in the next three to five years? For some this was the same question as the last one and so provided an opportunity for deeper explanation. For others this was an opportunity to discuss the world in which we live and what it means for a child’s education and a future that is impossible to predict. That showed where the community was in terms of expectations and outcome. Through my year of listening, I gained a clear sense of what matters to our community. I learned what is working, what is time-honored, and what needs innovation. The data I gathered has helped set priorities for the strategic plan and has provided a roadmap for continuing conversations. But most important is that the answers have come from members of the Harding community and, therefore, the implementation will be exciting to them. At Harding, we seek to inspire thoughtfulness, creativity, self-discipline, and responsibility in our students. Yet I, too, have been educated, inspired, and challenged this year. And, thus, I challenge you: How might you be educated, inspired, and challenged in your own schools? What are your essential questions for your community? As a new head, this process was received as a natural outgrowth of the transition process, however, I think it can be a regular practice for me over the years. As I listened to and learned from so many, I gained a sense of the challenges and opportunities ahead. And I am filled with optimism for all that’s to come. What I hope for any head who takes on this challenge is to feel, as I do, the ability to be much more effective in terms of identifying coalescing priorities for the school. We are all in this together. Anything can happen, and anything can be.


SAIS Collaboration Grants Program

The SAIS Stephen P. Robinson Collaboration Grants were created to encourage independent schools to form new partnerships with other schools or institutions of higher education. Preference will be given to collaborations with other schools serving students in K through 12th grades. SAIS will divide a total of $25,000. Five member schools each will receive $5,000. Those applying must demonstrate a vision and capacity to pursue and carry out meaningful collaborations. Successful examples have demonstrated efforts that benefit the greater community or region in unique ways. Schools selected for grants will share their results with the SAIS community. SAIS will accept proposals for the 2018 Collaboration Grants until December 31, 2017. Visit sais.org/grants to learn more about the grants and to submit your proposal. Awards will be announced and disbursed by February 1, 2018.

sais.org/grants Questions? Contact christina@sais.org.

SAIS SURVEY CENTER VALUE NARRATIVE SURVEY The SAIS Value Narrative Surveys are designed to help schools understand the relationship between the value stakeholders place on a variety of characteristics and the perceived performance of the school at delivering on the characteristics. BOARD GOVERNANCE SURVEY SAIS offers a Board Governance Survey, which is aligned with the SAIS governance workshop and measures the board and the head’s commitment to the five domains of governance. The survey results include a custom report that shows the current benchmarks. sais.org/surveycenter

SAIS CAREER CENTER

SEARCH FOR A JOB Job postings are free and unlimited for SAIS member schools. The SAIS Career Center is easy to use and allows you to post, manage, and edit jobs right from your desktop. sais.org/career


6050 Peachtree Pkwy Ste 240-199 Norcross, GA 30092 sais.org

UPCOMING CONFERENCES

January 16-17, 2018

January 16-17, 2018

Crowne Plaza Executive Park – Charlotte, NC

Crowne Plaza Executive Park – Charlotte, NC

A professional development opportunity for new and experienced athletic directors from across the region. Learn alongside colleagues as you discuss leadership, communications, and best practices unique to the culture of an independent school athletic department. Take advantage of this focused workshop to discover solutions to current issues and stay informed on the latest trends. sais.org/ADC

An introductory overview of independent school finance for aspiring and early career heads of school. Informative and engaging sessions will be led by financial professionals and independent school leaders. Enjoy opportunities to discuss and reflect with colleagues as you learn to make sense of the financial landscape of the school. sais.org/FI

SAIS Fall 2017 Magazine - Inaugural Issue  
SAIS Fall 2017 Magazine - Inaugural Issue  
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