The Conference includes workshops for new Heads and new Chairs, notable Guest Speakers, separate sessions for Heads and Chairs, and the CAIS Annual General Meeting. Several other presentations and workshops take place, which vary each year. Learn more & register here.
CAIS Top 12
#1: Vision, Mission, Values & Strategy
This Business Insider article looks at Basis Independent Silicon Valley (BISV). Each student at BISV takes a minimum of six Advanced Placement courses and completes their graduation requirements before senior year, when they embark on capstone classes and independent research. In 2016, ninth-graders at BISV who took a worldwide exam had higher test scores in math, reading, and science than the averages of 15-year-olds in China, Korea, and Singapore.
Last month, Oracle opened the doors of a brand new $43 million high school building built on its Silicon Valley campus. The building is the new home for Design Tech - also known as d.tech - a public charter school that works closely with the Oracle Education Foundation, a nonprofit organization funded by the company.
Also worth a read: WSU defends Koch-funded private school being built on campus
#2: Co-Curriculum & Learning Environments
This Mind Shift article looks at a recent study which shows that when it comes to helping others, teens may benefit psychologically from spending time helping strangers. According to the article, "the study, published in the Journal of Adolescence, suggests that altruistic behaviours, including large and small acts of kindness, may raise teens' feelings of self-worth." The researchers also found that adolescents who helped strangers reported higher self-esteem one year later.
#3: Academic Program
- We value our questions over our answers.
- We see how our perspective impacts everything-"reality," for example.
- We instinctively compare what we believe we know with what there is still to learn.
- We see the relationships between ourselves and those around us as complex, important, and constantly changing.
- We (try to) grasp the significance of what we learn.
- We know that our own understanding begins with knowing what's worth understanding.
- We seek to find the bias first in our thinking, then in others.
- We value our time and our place.
- We accept uncertainty.
- We minimize the separation between what we know and how we live
In this article for The Conversation, David Taylor, Instructor, Faculty of Education at the University of Winnipeg writes, "in terms of energy, public relations ploys by the oil, coal and nuclear industries can be convincing, and can lead our youth down the proverbial garden path. Being able to critically evaluate such claims is part of scientific literacy."
#4: School Leadership
- Establish group goals and norms.
- Use discussion and dialogue.
- Work through conflict.
- Develop problem-solving and decision-making strategies.
- Assure all voices are heard.
- Ask, "What if?"
- Communicate openly.
- Choose your friends carefully.
- Set expectations at the start.
- Be clear about your roles in conversation.
- Be transparent with others.
- Do your job.
Also worth a read: 10 Things All Great Principals Do
#5: Human Resources
- Conduct an Audit
- Negate Immediate Risk
- Address Long-Term Risk
- Professionalize HR Functions
- Monitor HR Practices
#6: School & Community
- Click-through rate
- Conversion rate
- Open rate
- Bounce rate
- Churn rate (list growth)
- Maintain meaningful prospect profiles for your alumni.
- Clean your alumni prospect profiles regularly.
- Leverage your alumni engagement survey to improve prospect research.
- Use alumni prospect research to plan more impactful fundraising events.
#7: Enrolment Management
This blog post has some suggestions for this reenrollment season to help you give families every reason possible to want to come back for next year, and to make the decision as quickly as possible:
- Face Your Issues Head On
- Rally the Troops
- Use Stories and Video
- Campaign Trail
- Get Personal
David D. Perlmutter is Dean of the College of Media and Communication at Texas Tech University. In this article, which appears in The Chronicle of Higher Education, he writes, "for leaders who want to save people from harm and uphold the honor and reputation of their institutions, not to mention keep their jobs, now is the time to plan for crises to come." He offers a few tips:
- Appreciate how fast issues and news develop today.
- Differentiate a real crisis from routine.
- Develop an intel monitoring system.
- Insist that anybody can leap the chain of command in a crisis.
- Prepare a plan for every type of crisis; review, revise, and rehearse.
- Know when to go public and when to keep it private.
- When going public, do not be led by events.
Prashanth Gangu, is a partner in the insurance and digital practices at Oliver Wyman. In this Harvard Business Review article Gangu writes that the risks posed by intelligent devices will soon surpass the magnitude of those associated with natural disasters. The article advises that natural disasters can provide a template for how to mitigate the growing and catastrophic risk posed by AI and stresses that organizations must have worst-case scenario recovery plans.
Ransomware is a type of malicious software designed to block access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid. Non-Profits are particularly vulnerable to ransomware attacks because they often have less sophisticated computer defenses. This article lists some of the best techniques to protect your organization from a ransomware attack:
- Backup your data regularly.
- Use a Multi-layered Defense Strategy.
- Filter e-mails.
- Educate your users.
This Forbes article looks at the challenges to long-established business models in colleges and universities. With resources continually more difficult to generate, some schools have made very large changes to their business models and have recreated themselves as very different institutions from the way they began. For the most part, institutions that have been successful in increasing their revenue stream from students have broadened their missions.
#10: Physical Plant, Health & Safety
- I feel sick, like I'm going to vomit.
- I'm not hungry.
- My tummy hurts.
- I don't want to go to school.
- Anything angry.
- 'I feel really sad and I don't know why.' (Or just tears. Lots of tears.)
- 'But what if .... What if ... What if.
- I need to pee ... again.
- I can't sleep.
- My legs hurt. My arms hurt.
- But I don't want to sit still.
- But I can't do it!
- I want to stay with you.
- I'm tired.
- Nobody wants to play with me.
Legalization of recreational marijuana is bound to complicate matters for Canadian high schools everywhere. Despite the fact that many people perceive marijuana as "relatively harmless" it is linked to early-onset paranoid psychosis and is damaging to academic performance.
#11: Commitment to School Improvement
Steve Wilkins is head of school at Carroll School, Massachusetts. In this NAIS article he writes, "data can help you make the case that your students can make more progress in a wide variety of areas because your independent school is able to understand their learning profiles and design their instruction accordingly". Wilkins details how the school made the commitment to maximizing student records by analyzing the data they contained to guide educational programming and he shares what they've learned from their experience with data, which can be useful for independent schools of all types and levels. Some of the steps they took included creating a database and student data reports; conducting relevant research; providing teacher training and adjusting the daily academic schedule.
#12: Boarding Program
A New Hampshire boarding school and a crisis center group have partnered to enhance student health and safety and prevent domestic and sexual violence. The agreement will provide a 24-hour crisis hotline, advocacy and support services, crisis intervention, and counselling.
Kwantlen Polytechnic University has closed applications from all international students enrolled in 2018 after reaching its capacity, reports Richmond News. The article explains that KPU's international enrolment has grown 41% since last fall. "We never had these many applicants from international before," said KPU media specialist Tatiana Tomljanovic. "As of Jan 24, we received 2,519 international applications for the summer semester, compared to 1,209 international applications for the 2017 summer semester."
Recent CAIS Top 12
Please note: Due to the links we publish being from outside sources, the older the Top 12 is in our archive, the more likely it is to find an expired link. This is beyond our control and we apologize for the inconvenience.