Great Podcast: Why, What, and How of School Change…Even at Best Schools

July 12, 2018

I absolutely could not give the rationale nor tell the story of school transformation better than Tim Quinn and Liz Schmitt of Miss Porter’s School on this podcast with Peter Baron and Hans Mundahl of Enrollment Management Association. I was honored to be able to help guide MPS over the last year as they began to…

Havasupai School in Need Hides in Desert Paradise

June 28, 2018

When we see people and places in need, do we stop, ask questions, and help? Or do we walk on by, assuming someone else will take care of the problem, hope it will go away, or silently give thanks that we are better off?  What problems do you have at your school that can even…

Video of My Commencement Speech in May

June 19, 2018

I shared what I think are some very key messages in this commencement speech last month; hopefully it might help in some discussions at your school over the summer and kicking off the new school year in the fall!

“We Will BE the Joneses”

June 8, 2018

Happy start of summer!  In the past 10 days, I have worked with superintendents from north-central New York, stretched in a 3,000-strong yoga jam with Michael Franti at Redrocks, hauled myself up and down the Colorado front range, intersected with 130 forward leaning educators to kick off the annual Traverse gathering in Boulder, and prototyped…

Interview with NYSAIS: Why and How of School Transformation

June 1, 2018

Thanks, New York Association of Independent Schools, for conducting and posting this interview with me in May. I think it summarizes the current state of K-12 transformation: both the “why” and the “how”, particularly how we are Moving the Rock. These are the discussions that school leadership teams, in both public and private schools either…

My Commencement Address, 2018: Delphian School, Oregon

May 28, 2018

This is the commencement address I gave on May 27 at Delphian School in Oregon. Delphian is a very unusual school, with a program that fully embraces performance-based learning. Students work at their own pace; teachers are mentors and tutors, and do not hold traditional classes. They have been getting a flood of visitors recently…

“I Vow Not To Be a Bystander”

May 8, 2018

“I vow not to be a bystander and wait for a directive”.  This from educator Renee Costarella, a personal manifesto that she will be part of education transformation, not because someone else gives her permission, but because she sees the right way forward.  This is the kind of empowered leadership and action that will Move…

Last Sandbox of the Year: IowaBIG School and Creating Projects of Impact

May 7, 2018

Our final Sandbox meet-up for the school year will be a doozie: if you work in a high school, or are interested in authentic learning in and with your community, or want to create opportunities for students to have real impact…then join us Tuesday may 8 at 7 PM ET, when our guest Rock Star…

Two Simple Steps to Creating Demand For Your School

May 5, 2018

In a rapidly differentiated education market, many private and public schools find themselves with weakening streams of students coming to their doors.  How can you reverse this?  How can you build demand for your school? Community Public Charter School in Charlottesville, Virginia is a very small school that has struggled to support a somewhat unique…

Another Novel Route to Creating a True Strategic Plan

April 28, 2018

In another sign that the era of traditional five-year school strategic plans are dead, take a look at the approach led by head of school Ned Murray and this team at Episcopal Day School in Augusta, GA.  It is simple, clean, and generates action items based on aspirations and big questions, rather than the backward-looking distillation…

A Powerful New Teacher “Interview”!

April 26, 2018

THE shortest route to a school with powerful, sustainable innovation capacity is to hire the right people. So I was so excited that, on a short-planned visit to Design 39 Campus, they were “interviewing” a prospective new faculty hire by throwing her right into the deep end of the pool: organize a design challenge with…

Where Should School Leaders Focus?

April 23, 2018

Over the weekend I got to facilitate a board meeting at The Forman School in Connecticut. In planning the session, head of school Adam Man challenged me to mold my remarks and create active learning for the trustees around four big questions.  I had not thought of our challenges in exactly this way before, and…

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