So often we talk about the best interests of our students without actually asking them what their best interests really are! Just like adults, kids also want their voices to be heard and used for making school improvements. In this episode, school leaders Kambar Khoshaba and Casey Roberts provide specific strategies and insight into capitalizing on student feedback, but they do so with a Star Wars vs Star Trek perspective! Get ready for a lot of popular culture references! This is the way!
- Embracing the value of learning different perspectives
- Student-led improvement processes
- Using presences to change culture
- A variety of real strategies like Shadow a Student, Consensograms for Rules, & Class Meetings
- The breakdown of Kambar and Casey’s Star Wars/Star Trek feud
Where to Listen
Listen to this episode using the above embedded Spotify app or using any of your favorite podcast platforms including:
About Kambar Khoshaba & Casey Roberts
Kambar Khoshaba was recently appointed as Principal at South County High School in Fairfax, Virginia, but has been the Principal of Western Branch Middle School in Chesapeake, Virginia, for many years. Western Branch Middle School has been recognized with National Forum Schools to Watch, Virginia Distinguished Purple Star School, and National Council of Excellence. Kambar is active in sharing best practices in school improvement with locally and nationally with groups like VASCD and U.S. Department of Education. He has published articles including:
- Harnessing Student Voice to Improve School Culture, Principal Leadership, April 2022
- Beauty from Ashes: One School’s Journey Into Social Justice, Principal Leadership, Sept 2021
- S.T.E.P.S. to Success: What Schools Can Do to Rebound in a Post-COVID World, Principal Leadership, March 2021
- When the Stars Align, Principal Leadership, April 2020
Casey Roberts is the Executive Director, New Horizons Regional Education Center (NHREC) in Hampton, Virginia. NHREC the largest of the nine regional centers in the Commonwealth of Virginia. NHREC serves over 1,500 public school students and 1,200 adult learners per year from the six Greater Peninsula school divisions and localities*, and provides regional programming in career and technical education, special education, gifted education, adult training/apprenticeships, and youth workforce initiatives.
Casey is a 5th generation educator. Before his current role, he served as the Principal of Smithfield High School with Isle of Wight County Schools from 2015 to 2018. During his tenure, he led the brokering of a $3 million investment by Smithfield Foods to create the Smithfield Legacy Project. The project funds directly supported the construction of new facilities and lab spaces at Smithfield High School that greatly expanded access for students to high-quality Career and Technical Education programming and career opportunities.
Casey serves on several advisory boards, most notably as the Board Vice-Chair for the Virginia STEM Education Advisory Board. He also serves on the boards for VersAbility Resources and the Hampton Roads Workforce Council. In 2021, Casey was named the Administrator of the Year by the Virginia Association for Career and Technical Education (VACTE) and was concurrently named a 2021 Impact Award recipient given by Virginia Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD). Casey is also a graduate of the ASCD Emerging Leader program (Class of 2019). Casey is a proud graduate of Virginia Tech and has graduate degrees from Regent University and The George Washington University.
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