CAIS Top 12 - Archived

#1: School Purpose

The Future Of High School

For this Forbes article, Mike McShane, Director of National Research at EdChoice, reflects on the new book Running with Robots: The American High School's Third Century by Greg Toppo and Jim Tracy. McShane says high schoolers are capable of higher-level learning and should do real work that connects to the world outside the classroom. He also stresses the critical role of the humanities and acknowledges that innovative schools place a heavy burden on teachers.

#2: School Leadership

How to Foster Healthy Disagreement in Your Meetings

To create breakthrough ideas and new opportunities, global CEO coach Sabina Nawaz recommends that leaders "raise the temperature" in team meetings to stimulate different ideas instead of quickly driving to consensus. Nawaz acknowledges that it can be challenging to bring up ideas that are against the organization's conventional thinking and shares four strategies to do so. First, be grounded in purpose. Second, describe behavioural data. Third, invite multiple interpretations of why these behaviours are happening. Finally, use that new knowledge to break familiar patterns.

#3: Governance

I Hate Head of School Annual Goals: Here's Why

Thomas P. Olverson served as a Head for 27 years and is now a search consultant for RG175. In this blog post, he opines that Head's annual goals are an "over-hyped, poorly executed management instrument." Instead, Olverson shares what he believes is a better way: "By focusing on shared responsibility and a longer time frame, the board and head are creating a partnership, which in turn, aligns the learning process (which informs strategy) with the intended long-term goal."

#4: Education Program Foundation

How PE teachers are tackling 'physical learning loss'

While the full impact of the pandemic on kids' health and fitness won't be known for some time, PE teachers are already working to confront the "physical learning loss" that many children experienced during the pandemic. For this article in The Hechinger Report, Kelly Field spoke with PE teachers who stressed that PE complements academic subjects and should not take a back seat in the attempt to make up for students' learning loss. PE is proven to improve cognitive skills, social-emotional skills, and gross motor skills, affecting how kids interact in other classes.

#5: Learning & Teaching

Why You Should Allow Students to Retake Tests

Dr. Katie Martin is the author of Learner-Centered Innovation and VP of Leadership and Learning at Altitude Learning. Martin believes that schools should provide multiple opportunities to demonstrate mastery and writes, "The impact of the retake is not only that it allows students to improve their grades, but it also ensures that they understand the important concepts." The post includes a chart that identifies the general assessment practices that improve the learning process versus those that hinder it.

#6: Student Well-Being & Support

COVID Harmed Kids' Mental Health—And Schools Are Feeling It

According to this article from PEW, the mental health effects -- grief, anxiety and depression -- from the pandemic are being seen in schools, resulting in crying and disruptive behaviour in many younger kids and bullying among adolescents. As well, emergency department visits for suspected suicide attempts among adolescents have jumped considerably. Sharon Hoover, co-director of the University of Maryland-based National Center for School Mental Health, says Schools should have a school-wide mental health plan for all students -- not just those with diagnosed mental health conditions.

#7: Essential Concepts

How Schools Can Stem the Toxic Tide of Technology

This Education Week article is by Andy Hargreaves, a professor emeritus at Boston College and a visiting professor at the University of Ottawa. Hargreaves says now is the time that "every school and system must focus more sharply and think more precisely about where, when, and how technology-supported learning can and cannot add unique value to students' experiences and outcomes." In the article, Hargreaves shares six of ten provisions from a charter that the University of Ottawa created for ethical technology use. You can view the entire charter here.

#8: Custodial Care

All Student Groups Care About Diversity

For this Inside Higher Ed article, Scott Jaschik looks at a new poll by Art & Science Group of 734 high schoolers in the United States that shows high schoolers care about diversity on their future college campuses. The poll found that around 40 percent of students -- from all racial and ethnic backgrounds -- reported actively searching for DEI information.

#9: Recruitment & Community Engagement

7 Essential Marketing Strategies for Your Education Marketing Plan

In this blog post, education marketing consultant Bart Caylor considers seven marketing strategies essential for higher ed marketing success, most of which also apply to independent schools. The last strategy Caylor details is influencer marketing. This may include asking a notable alumnus to mention your school on their social media accounts, but it is even better to cultivate relationships with alumni who are influencers in their own way on social media; for example, schedule social media takeovers and host conversations or interviews with them.

#10: Human Resources

How Mattering Matters for Educators

Ryan Donlan and Shelly Wilfong are practitioners and scholars interested in teacher well-being who believe that the concept of "mattering" holds the key to collective efficacy in schools. In this ASCD article, Donlan and Wilfong share a framework they developed with three key areas -- interpersonal, intrapersonal, and external -- that teachers can use to identify gaps and help them find more teaching satisfaction and enjoyment.

#11: Finance

Rising inflation: Temporary deviation or here to stay? 6 chief economists discuss

Inflation is on the rise: the reasons are complex, and there is little consensus on the short and long-term trajectory. For this article, the World Economic Forum asked six members of the Forum's Chief Economists Community for their insights into the outlook for inflation, looking at how businesses, governments and central banks should be navigating the challenges.

#12: Facilities & Infrastructure

Personal Space for Safety, Wellness and Autonomy

Writing for Getting Smart, Randy Fielding, a Founding Partner at Fielding International, a team of architects and educators, says, "the need for accessible breakout spaces and low sensory rooms that support all learners, including introverts and all neurodivergent learners, has long been recognized, but the solutions have often been based on myths about learning and psychology." To help design schools where learners thrive, the Fielding International website features Design Patterns, which are simple sketches for cave spaces, small meeting rooms and low sensory spaces.

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