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CAIS Top 12 - Archived
#1: Vision, Mission, Values & Strategy
- Drawing helps learner retention, but doodling is often a distraction
- Attendance awards can backfire, but highly engaging teachers can decrease absences by 49 percent
- Gender differences in math performance are socially constructed
- The "summer slide" is almost certainly overblown
- Expanding a school's arts programs improved writing scores, increased the students' compassion for others, and reduced disciplinary infractions.
- There are real-world benefits of delaying start times for high school students.
#2: Co-Curriculum & Learning Environments
Chelsea Waite, a research fellow with The Christensen Institute, recently read a new book that found while deeper learning isn't consistently or comprehensively happening in high school classes, it is happening more predictably in extracurriculars. As a result, Waite recommends that educators who want to see deeper learning in core classes, work to develop assessment models in extracurriculars and after-school programs. Doing so allows educators to refine the assessments while optimizing the factors they care about most and also makes extracurriculars less peripheral by showing how academic knowledge and skills can be developed in many contexts, including outside of traditional classrooms.
#3: Academic Program
#4: School Leadership
After teaching elementary school and being a principal for the past 24 years, Don Vu is taking a "gap year" to be a full-time dad. He's volunteering in his daughter's fifth-grade class every week, and in this Edutopia article, he writes about the different perspective this experience has given him. Vu acknowledges that goals and plans are essential but stresses that the kids and relationships are the most important things for principals to focus on in leading their schools, concluding, "as a parent, I just want to know that my child is important to you."
Also worth a read: Leadership Books That'll Up Your Game
#5: Human Resources
- They provide people with life satisfaction as opposed to job satisfaction alone.
- They find ways to rejuvenate employees by helping them identify their "calling" or the area of work that provides them with the greatest fulfillment.
- They realized that their effectiveness relies upon the goodwill and solidarity of groups, so they put quite a bit of effort into bringing people together, especially to celebrate special occasions and recognize important life-cycle transitions.
- Employees have the leeway to rearrange, modify, and improve their assignments feel possession over them.
- Employees can be their "authentic" selves at work.
#6: School & Community
#7: Enrolment Management
- Review the marketing strategy including objectives, competitors and challenges.
- Plan tactical activities on your editorial calendar.
- Make time for learning.
- Create a 'no interrruption' zone for work that needs deep focus.
- Ask 'Why?' before springing into action by asking probing questions.
Brian Saber, President of Asking Matters, believes "the more inquisitive you are, the more engaged your donors will feel." He suggests nine questions to ask donors, broken down into three categories: About the Cause, About Our Relationship, About Their Philanthropy.
#10: Physical Plant, Health & Safety
Writing for Forbes, Patrick Rishe, Founding Director of the Sports Business Program at Washington University, reflects on an intercollegiate athletics forum that he recently attended and the genuine concern among participants about the emotional and mental well-being of student-athletes. There are many interesting points in the article, including the fact that athletes typically require more urgent and timely care. The article stresses the importance of educating students, coaches, trainers, and parents.
#11: Commitment to School Improvement
This Edutopia article elaborates on these simple tactics that school leaders can use to make teachers evaluations more actionable and meaningful:
- Don't rely only on the observation.
- Visit classrooms frequently-not only when you do a formal evaluation.
- Don't get caught up in the "compliance mindset."
- Widen the lens so your focus isn't exclusively on the teacher's actions.
- Give an immediate assessment when possible.
- Focus on one actionable item.
- Encourage teacher input.
- Create opportunities for growth
#12: Boarding Program
According to this ICEF Monitor article, Asia will remain a leading source of students for many years. However, Africa is home to the world's fastest-growing college-aged population and has seen a 26% increase in the number of students leaving their countries for higher education. France is the largest destination market for African students; China is in second place in large part because it has been investing billions of dollars in infrastructure in African countries.