Friends School Educators Presenting at NAIS 2020

Wow! Check out these workshops being presented by Friends school educators  at NAIS 2020 in Philadelphia, February 26-28,2020.  For more information including date, time and location of each workshop, visit the NAIS 2020 Annual Conference website. 

Mastery Learning Journey for Culturally Responsive White Leaders
Jack Hill, Cambridge Friends School (MA)

As investment increases in professional development around diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), how are you assessing the skills and readiness of your white leaders? How does your institution define culturally responsive leadership, metrics of success, measures of accountability, and knowledge-to-skill transfer? In this workshop you will explore how to leverage mastery learning as a capacity-building modality, to use rubrics to assess evidence of skill acquisition and meaning making, and to visualize the learner profile of a culturally responsive white leader. Commit to “walking the walk”; learn to calibrate your metacognitive lens to track the impact of your white leadership footprint and to inform culturally responsive, sustainable whole-school change.

Position, Population and Sustainability
(Or why net tuition revenue is not "the only number that matters)

Dana Weeks and Joseph Evans, Germantown Friends School (PA)

Running a school is like running a state: What resources do you consume in the present rather than conserve for the future? Join a panel of heads, trustees, an accreditor and a foundation to discuss challenges and opportunities for crafting a sustainable economic model for your school—and all schools. This session will include an extended Q&A and performance analytics for 800 independent schools.

The Power of Place in Defining Your School’s Educational Niche
Matt Micciche, Friends School Baltimore

In a crowded and competitive marketplace, independent schools are constantly refining their value propositions for families and seeking to strengthen their unique identities. For many schools, the notion of “place” has become central to institutional identity. The Gunston School, Winchester Thurston School, and Friends School of Baltimore have successfully embraced place-based education, community partnerships, and experiential learning to create unique programs within their schools that support educational innovation, promote authentic learning, impact the community, and correlate positively with enrollment. Join us for an interactive and action-oriented session, and leave with a place-based plan for your own school.

Building Bridges: Practical Tips for a Successful Head's Transition
Julia de la Torre, Moorestown Friends School and Lawrence van Meter former Head, Moorestown Friends (NJ)

In an era of unprecedented turnover in headship, schools are faced with a significant challenge to help their communities through uncertainty. In this session, you will hear from an outgoing head of school, an incoming head of school, a board chair, and an association leader who will share their insights and practical tips for setting up a head’s transition that is not only successful but energizing for everyone involved. You will reflect on your own school context, as well as explore communication strategies, event ideas, sample timelines, and other considerations for ensuring strong governance before, during, and after a leadership transition.

Breaking the Bonds of Bias in Hiring
Toni Graves Williamson, Friends Select and Deborra Sines Pancoe, Friends Council on Education (PA)

Our schools commit to being inclusive communities, but how do we reflect this commitment when hiring employees? How do we move beyond the established network to seek a broader pool of candidates? How do we retain employees from marginalized groups once they enter the school community? In this workshop, you will explore examples of tools that help examine your own biases and increase awareness of challenges to this goal. You will learn about resources that lead to hiring for equity and inclusion, engage in activities for reflection on the personal work needed, and review anticipated cultural shifts that help move toward more inclusive schools.

Financial Management for Developing and Enhancing a School’s Endowment
Mary Carrasco, Sidwell Friends School (DC)

The endowment is the most important asset in ensuring a school’s financial sustainability. Albert Bellas will discuss a financial management protocol that assists in developing, maintaining, or enhancing a school’s endowment. After a discussion of current endowment misconceptions, you will learn how to create a comprehensive financial protocol that (1) defines the school’s endowments; (2) identifies the basic financial challenges confronting all schools; (3) creates critical ratios necessary to assess the school’s current financial position and its peer group status; (4) integrates the school’s operating budget, new program needs, capital projects, fundraising capacity, financing alternatives, and endowment into a predictive model; (5) assesses financial alternatives for new programs or capital projects; and (6) provides a matrix to evaluate the long-term implications of financial decisions as they impact the school’s endowments to ensure financial sustainability.

You Want to be. School Head? What you need to know NOW about Advancement
Michael Gary and Christine Jefferson, Friends Select School (PA)

Being a head of school today means being able to cultivate relationships with donors and ask for gifts. These are not necessarily skills you have learned as a teacher or administrator. This session will review the fundamentals of advancement work and provide suggestions about how you can start getting some hands-on experience now, either at your school or through other community organizations. You will leave the session with a professional development plan for gaining advancement experience.

Looking to Enhance your Curriculum? Take a Walk Through Your School’s Neighborhood with Us
Natalie Mayer and Margaret Smith, Friends Select School (PA)

Are you an educator who strives to create more experiential learning? Do you enjoy finding ways to make content more relevant? If so, you are like us—two educators at Friends Select School— who enjoy pushing the boundaries of teaching and learning. Over the years, we have discovered a plentiful and priceless resource that your school also has—a neighborhood. Whether urban, suburban, or rural, your neighborhood provides powerful lenses through which you can teach. We have found our lens in the city of Philadelphia, and we’d like to help you find yours too.

Scaffolding Leadership Development in Friends Schools
Meredith Godley and Chris KImberly, Moorestown Friends School (NJ)

Student leadership plays a critical role in our high school programs, but how do you cultivate this skillset/mindset among students? In this session, you will discover how carefully scaffolded experiences in the ninth through 12th grades can foster critical skills and student self-awareness. Come ready to assume the role of student and engage in self-assessment, interactive simulations, and thoughtful reflection. Together we’ll explore the ways we can teach leadership to high school students of all ages. We will model activities and programming from our ninth and 12th grade Peer Leadership Program and 10th grade leadership course.

Creating Inclusive Environments for Transgender and NonBinary Students in Middle and Lower Schools 
Kimberly Clarkson, Moorestown Friends School (NJ), Kiri Harris, Greene Street Friends School PA), Rachel Kane, Sidwell Friends School (DC), and Betsy Torg, Friends Council on Education 

You consider your school to be an inclusive space, but you want to do better with supporting transgender and non-binary students in your lower and middle schools. Where do you start, and what can your school do to include students of all gender identities? What are the first steps, how do you educate your faculty and community, and what role can students play in these efforts? How can you respond effectively to resistance and pushback? In this workshop, the Friends Council on Education brings you a panel of experienced Friends school educators to share their extensive work in creating safe and supportive environments.

Benefit Models and Faculty Retention and Recruitment Priorities
Christine Saunders, Friends Academy (NY)

Compensation and benefits are the leading costs for employers and, in independent schools, these costs usually account for 75-85% of operating expenses. See how the benefit priorities of multiple generations of faculty influence the structure and cost of benefits for independent schools.

Change Management in School Leadership
Chris Singler, Friends Select School (PA_

Independent schools have differentiated themselves by providing mission-driven programs, student-centered learning initiatives, and competitive salaries and benefits. Is it enough? Through action research, we have gathered data on how school leaders are responding to immediate challenges with an eye on the long-term viability of their schools.

Am I Lost or Am I Searching? Reflective Exercises for Journeys of Transition
Shu Shu Costa, Moorestown Friends School (NJ); Deborra Sines Pancoe, Friends Council on Education

If you’re embarking on a transition or just dreaming of “what ifs,” this workshop will help change those moments of doubt into fertile, life-changing reflection when you ask searching questions that really matter: Who do I want to be? What is my authentic voice? What truly calls to me? Drawing on the work and wisdom of educators and poets Parker Palmer, Judy Brown, David Whyte, and even Confucius, this workshop will use guided, personal reflection in partnership with thoughtful, small-group conversation to help you listen carefully to your inner self and shift your mindset from “lost” to “searching.”




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