• Wednesday Educational Strands (9:45 am to 4:30 pm)

    1. Leading Vermont Schools Toward Equity with Rebecca Holcombe


    Former Education Secretary Holcombe will provide content and inspiration for a lively learning experience about data, policy and education leadership. It is critical that leaders' decisions be grounded and guided by good data, AND that government officials, policy-makers and Principals are aligned toward a common vision of equity and excellence for ALL students. But, how do we do that? Where do we even start? Especially when the road to equity is unclear and complicated, the challenges to leadership often times seemingly out of our control. Spend the day with colleagues and one of Vermont's leading education thought leaders exploring these questions, strengthening your resolve, and developing an informed plan for achieving greater equity and excellence in your school.


    2. Leadership for Collective Efficacy with Greg Cameron, Center for Creative Leadership


    Collective Efficacy refers to the perceptions a group has that by working together as a whole they can successfully meet a challenge. “For schools, collective efficacy refers to the perceptions of teachers that the instructional staff as a whole can execute the courses of action necessary to have positive effects on students.” (Goddard, 2001) Collective Efficacy in schools has been shown to have a significant correlation to increased achievement and decreased achievement gaps. There are proven ways to increase the level of Collective Efficacy in schools through leadership. Focusing on the Commitment element of the Center for Creative Leadership’s Direction, Alignment, Commitment leadership framework, Greg Cameron will share ideas, tools, and processes in an interactive session that school leaders can use towards increasing Collective Efficacy in their schools.


    3. Building Self-Regulation in the Classroom: Mindsets + Skill Sets = Results with Kathleen Kryza, Infinite Horizons

    In this workshop, Kathleen Kryza, international consultant and educator, will share the latest cognitive research on what it takes to shape successful learners in and beyond the classroom. She will offer many practical ideas and strategies for developing students’ executive function by working with their mindsets and self-regulation skill sets to prepare them for school and for life.

    Workshop Objectives:

    • Create a safe environment, so that all learners are engaged and willing to learn.
    • Learn how effort, discipline and deliberate practice contribute more to school success than IQ or innate ability
    • See how to weave Growth Mindset thinking into your daily school environment and classroom instruction.
    • Know how to foster good work habits, build self-regulation and metacognitive skill sets
    • Teach students to talk deeply and self-assess regularly

    Methodology: Kathleen presents in a “Live it to Learn It” model. Workshops include many doable, practice strategies so teachers can experience what it feels like to learn in an inspiring classroom. Each day’s session will be a blend of whole class presentations, engaging and interactive group participation, and individual time for self-reflection. All pedagogy will be supported with current brain-based and instructional research. Kathleen’s mission is for you to leave her workshops inspired and excited to transform your classroom into a vibrant community of students who love learning.


    4. From Top-Down and Bottom-up: How Schools Become Trauma-Transformed with Dave Melnick, NFI Vermont

    Schools are often inundated with new initiatives, many of which are excellent and very well-intentioned yet struggle at the implementation and sustainability stages. In this workshop we will examine top-down organizational practices and competencies necessary to make sustained and successful change. Innovations from the fields of ‘implementation science”, organizational culture and leadership engagement will be discussed.

    This workshop will also examine the bottom-up practices and competencies necessary to best prepare the workforce for success with trauma-exposed students.  By integrating best-practice interventions from a variety of disciplines and models—NCTSN’s Seven Domains of Impact, NFI’s Trauma-informed Schools Program, family therapy, attachment and trauma theory—attendees will learn innovative skills to enhance progress and growth.  Additionally, ideas will be shared to improve the integration of skills and efforts between teachers and school leadership.

    Becoming trauma-transformed requires the coordinated efforts of many people, all of whom have a critical role in facilitating change.  This workshop is appropriate for administrators interested in improving both individual and school/district-wide practices. Workshop participants will learn:

    • Core components of organizational change that enhance improved educational practices.
    • Central elements of “implementation science” and the sustainability of changes.
    • Specific strategies and interventions to address traumatic stress in the school.
    • Methods of using current data to demonstrate effectiveness.
    • NFI’s Trauma-informed Schools Program Core Components (e.g. Safety and Security, Psychoeducation, Collaboration, Relational Health, Fostering Resilience and Hope, Reparative and Restorative Practices, and Deconstructing Power and Privilege

    5. Leadership and Learning: The Role of Mobile Devices with Matt Brooks, Apple, Inc.


    Digital learning experiences and mobile devices are changing the education landscape. Join us for an in-depth discussion to explore strategies for leading your organization through this transition to create new opportunities for teaching and learning. You’ll explore the role of visionary leadership in supporting school transformation and see how new learning resources can help prepare students to be successful in the world they’ll graduate into.

    Join us at this hands-on event to discover tools and resources from Apple that allow all students to explore, communicate, and create in new and powerful ways.

    • Participate in discussions that focus on leading innovation in your school,
    • Learn about the elements for creating technology-rich learning environments based on best practices,
    • Discover key considerations for managing change within your school.
    • Explore ways to ignite student creativity, collaboration, engagement, and critical thinking in every classroom,
    • Discover resources that provide an integrated approach to managing your project through each stage of implementation.

    6. Understanding Whiteness in a Multi-Cultural Society with Jonathan Miller-Lane, Middlebury College


    White educators, particularly in those schools in which the overwhelming majority of students are White, rarely have the training to effectively facilitate complex discussions about race.  Recently, in-service professional development has focused on “Diversity Training” and “Implicit Bias” training. Both of these have been critically important, but insufficient. What has been missing is an open, heart-centered discussion among White educators about the impact of Whiteness on their work. For White educators, Whiteness is often a vast unexplored territory much to the detriment of citizenship/democratic education in the USA. In this workshop, we will explore how White educators, in schools and classrooms that are filled with an overwhelming majority of White students, can effectively facilitate discussions about race in a manner that enables their students to better engage the multicultural society that is the United States.


    7. Equity, Change & School Leadership with Dr. Pedro Noguera, UCLA


    While the focus on standards and accountability, and now the common core curriculum, have forced educators to take measures to ensure that all students are receiving a sound, basic education, the changes occurring in the 21st century compel us to do even more.


    Globalization, technological innovation, demographic change and rising inequality make it essential for schools to provide students with the ability to adapt to change.  Critical thinking, creativity, problem-solving ability, social and emotional intelligence, are just some of the attributes students will need to be successful in the years ahead.  School leaders will also need to understand how to implement an equity-focused agenda if they are to succeed in serving ALL students. Drawing on research carried out in schools and districts where this type of work is occurring now, this presentation will describe some of the strategies that educational leaders will need to adopt if they are to be successful in creating schools that meet the challenges of the 21st century.


    Thursday Morning Workshop with the Center for Creative Leadership (8:00 to 10:00 am)


    Strengthening School Culture with DAC (Direction, Alignment & Commitment) with Greg Cameron, CCL

    At the core of school leadership is the ability to address Direction (mission driven goals and outcomes), Alignment (agreements about how we achieve our goals and outcomes), and Commitment (the collective efficacy and collaboration needed to be successful). In this interactive two-hour workshop leaders will be introduced to powerful and practical leadership tools for identifying Direction, Alignment, and Commitment, developing a culture of feedback, and maximizing our influence as school leaders. Participants will have time for engaging with each other to better understand and integrate the new resources into their work.