The National Leaders Conference is your opportunity to interact with a range of senior-level leaders in your network. For 2020, the audience will be 200+ Academic Leaders. Learn more here.
CAIS Top 12 - Archived
#1: Vision, Mission, Values & Strategy
In this article from The Atlantic, which was widely shared on Twitter this week, Adam Grant and Allison Sweet Grant write that we should encourage children to do their best, and there is significant evidence that suggests that children who help others end up achieving more than those who don't. The authors lament that while parents praise kindness, they are often sending messages that personal achievement is more important. They offer several ways to show that caring is a core value, such as sharing our own experiences with helping and offering kids the choice to be kind.
#2: Co-Curriculum & Learning Environments
The symptoms of ADHD and childhood trauma are very similar, writes Leah Campbell in this School Leaders Now article. In the article, Dr. Karin Cleary, a psychologist, identifies some signs of childhood trauma, including:
- Startle and scare easily
- Intrusive thoughts causing distraction
- Trouble sleeping at night, which may lead to trouble maintaining attention in class
- Seeming emotionally flat, less likely to appear either angry or happy
- A desire to control every situation, which could look like overachieving
Dr. Cleary offers suggestions for educators who suspect a student may be suffering from the results of trauma and stresses that educators must be aware of just how prevalent childhood trauma is and work to create 'trauma-informed classrooms.'
#3: Academic Program
This Mind Shift looks at a study that shows girls start out with the same math abilities as boys, challenging the idea that more boys than girls end up in STEM fields because they are inherently better at the thinking those fields require. There is evidence of sex differences in some exceptional older students; however, fields like mathematics and computer science are likely dominated by men due to the societal messages girls and young women get, and the difficulty of entering a field that includes very few women.
#4: School Leadership
Also worth a read: Why Groups Struggle to Solve Problems Together (in Standard 8)
#5: Human Resources
This Usable Knowledge article looks at the key findings and implications from a new study, which found that low-stakes peer evaluations resulted in improvements in teacher job performance -- for both the observed teacher and the teacher doing the observation -- as measured by test scores. The study was conducted by the Harvard Graduate School of Education's Eric Taylor, University of Bristol's Simon Burgess, and Shenila Rawal of the Oxford Partnership for Educational Research.
#6: School & Community
- Rewrite all standard or regularly used student life information sheets, brochures, booklets, handbooks and high-visibility communication tools to reflect the ideas and language of your brand foundation.
- Integrate an introduction to your brand foundation into new student and new employee orientation activities.
- Ensure that all student leaders are briefed and fully aware of the school's commitment to living your brand foundation; challenge student leaders to let your school's promise, pillars, character and centring idea inspire organizational programming.
- Integrate dimensions and expressions of your brand foundation into residential life programming in dormitories, student lounge areas, public gathering spaces, restrooms, parking areas, etc.
- Collaborate with dining services and external partner vendors/suppliers on ways to integrate the expression of your brand foundation into annual planning.
#7: Enrolment Management
- Introduce Board Members to their roles in a way that will excite them and enrich their lives.
- Engage board and staff members in an authentic way
- Ask questions that expand the thinking of board and staff members
- Recognize that "KPI" is a four-letter word.
In this Harvard Business Review article, meeting expert Al Pittampalli writes that while "intuitive problem solving" works well for individuals, it is far less useful for groups. Instead, Pittampalli recommends that groups use a methodical approach: for each issue that needs to be discussed, members deliberately choose just one problem-solving stage to complete. He also provides a template for conducting a methodical meeting, which pairs each agenda item with a problem solving stage and a measurable outcome and suggests questions for identifying the problem-solving stage to choose.
#10: Physical Plant, Health & Safety
In this EdTech article, Joel Snyder, a senior IT consultant with 30 years of practice, writes that the new Wi-Fi 6 standard makes sense for high-density areas of K-12 campuses. Schools looking to upgrade to Wi-Fi 6 should do so gradually, making sure that anything added to networks now can support Wi-Fi 6, and then looking at how to accommodate faster AP-to-network speeds in the next upgrade cycle.
#11: Commitment to School Improvement
Jessica Massonnié is a research fellow at the Institute of Education at University College London. In this BOLD post, she writes about a recent survey that asked teachers' opinions of both disproven educational assertions (neuromyths) and evidence-based learning strategies.
The survey shows that neuromyths, such as the idea that people are either right-brained or left-brained or that teaching is more efficient if pedagogical material is tailored to students' "learning styles" are still prevalent. Massonnié writes that the best way to combat neuromyths is through better explanations and broader dissemination of evidence-based learning strategies.
#12: Boarding Program
The International Club of Ithaca College recently hosted a panel "Breaking Stereotypes About International Students," to bring awareness to some of the struggles international students -- there are 130 international students enrolled at the college, which is less than 1% of the student body -- deal with at the school. Students on the panel said that they often have to field misconceptions and answer stereotypical questions about their countries. As well, international students often get comments about how well they speak English, even though they have been speaking English from young ages.