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CAIS Top 12 - Archived
#1: Vision, Mission, Values & Strategy
"Kampong" is a term used to describe traditional villages in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore, where members are connected not only by proximity but by a shared identity of their community. In this article, Christine Powell, a teacher and Fulbright Distinguished Teaching Award recipient, writes about how the spirit of kampong is beneficial for a school and also provides a source of pride in the community. She details four ways that educators can increase community engagement in their schools: sharing knowledge, networking contacts, volunteering experiences and sharing successes.
#2: Co-Curriculum & Learning Environments
Tom Vander Ark is the CEO of Getting Smart and an advocate for innovations in learning. Writing for Forbes, he stresses the importance of planning, preparation and sustained support to make real life learning valuable for all learners, and also offers 20 tips, which he groups into these four categories:
- Planning And Preparation
- Provisioning And Managing Work-Based Learning
- Industry Certificate Programs
- Bringing The Real World Into The Classroom
Hip-hop artist Keliya recently joined forces with a high school choir to create a culturally diverse music video about self empowerment. The school's choir teacher, Deanna Gestrin, believes the choir's experience with Keliya will influence them going forward.
#3: Academic Program
#4: School Leadership
Recognizing that the most important thing a new hire needs for success is support, Microsoft introduced an onboarding "buddy program", which helped new hires in three key ways: providing context, boosting productivity, and improving new employee satisfaction. This Harvard Business Review article includes some early insights and tips from the program.
This article, which appears in The Atlantic, is about Sidwell Friends School, the high school of Chelsea Clinton and the Obama children. In January, the head of the school, Bryan Garman, sent a letter (included in the article) to parents of seniors in which he demanded that they stop "the verbal assault of employees" and last month, shocking behavior by parents may have led two of the school's three college counselors to leave their jobs.
#5: Human Resources
- Will they be effective in our environment, today and tomorrow?
- Will they embrace our structures and processes?
- Will they take away from the culture?
- Does their purpose align with the purpose of the company?
#6: School & Community
- Assess your data.
- Learn the culture of the school.
- What's the goal of the Alumni Program?
- Who are your Alumni Champions?
- Evaluate programs and ask for new ideas.
#7: Enrolment Management
This Bright Minds Marketing blog post recommends using year-end celebrations to market your school to the next generation of graduates, and offers the following suggestions to make it clear that when students graduate from your school, they succeed:
- High schools and grade schools should build relationships for mutual benefit
- Showcase your end result - This is where our grads go to succeed
- Spirit Wear (and photo shoot)
- Touch base with the admissions directors and administration of schools your students will be attending.
- Host a signing-day photo op for your athletes and scholarship winners
- Becoming a brand advocate
- Bontributing personally to the organization
- Assisting with fundraising
- Attending all meetings
- Thanking donors for their support
- Seizing opportunities
- Focussing on clients
- Handling competing priorities
- Thinking long-term
- Get an understanding of your Office's organizational system.
- Read your school's handbooks.
- Create relationships.
- Review your school's benefits packages.
- Get a handle on the financials.
#10: Physical Plant, Health & Safety
This Washington Post article looks at a study that found the Netflix show "13 Reasons Why" was associated with "a 28.9 percent increase in suicide rates among U.S. youths ages 10 to 17 in April 2017." The article recommends these measures to address teen mental health:
- Debunk negative stigmas associated with mental health.
- Increase mental health resources at schools.
- Social emotional learning in schools and the community.
- "It's OK to not be OK" How One High School Saved Lives with a 34-Question Survey
- When Social Media Is Really Problematic for Adolescents
- How to Bullyproof Your Child
#11: Commitment to School Improvement
The authors of this article in The Conversation recently published a study on curriculum-based outdoor learning for children aged 9-11. They found that going outside to learn -- even just for an hour or two every week -- can have tremendous benefits for children, increasing their engagement and improving their well-being. Outdoor learning also increases teachers' job satisfaction, an important factor since teacher well-being is essential to creating an effective learning environment.
Also worth a read: Forest school raises free-range, resilient kids and happy moms
#12: Boarding Program
In this New York Times interview, David Van Zandt, President of The New School, speaks about the globalization of education and the importance of offering a "high-touch full-time residential experience." About 34 percent of the school's approximately 10,000 students are from outside of the United States.