It was fun to lead this presentation at the National Family Engagement Summit in Richmond, Virginia this week. The group of educators were so responsive and I can really sense a growing desire to get back to the basics. Schools should be the center of the community and we should be the go-to place for family resources. In this post are the slides from my presentation at this event. 

This guest post is written by my friend J. Kapuchuck. a super dad and a super principal in Rockingham County, Virginia. Follow him on Twitter @PrincipalKap In today’s society everything is changing at a rapid pace.  However, the one thing that has not changed is our passion for either participating in sports or watching them.  Growing up in a town 45 minutes North of Pittsburgh, sports were a part of life and we all bled Black and Gold, which I still do now.  In case you didn’t know, Pittsburgh is the only city where all the major sports …

Bringing My “A” Game – #DadsAsPrincipals Super Bowl Edition Read more »

When you  think of your “home team,” what comes to mind? Is it your family or your favorite sports team? Why don’t we put as much energy and passion into celebrating our family or our school as we do our favorite football team? This post is part of a series we are starting with our #DadsAsPrincipals group of educational leaders making connections to the Super Bowl and our lives as dads and leaders.

Principals need to be engaging with students in their classrooms for them to be an effective leader. It is imperative that we get a feeling of what the teachers’ and students’ lives are like in school on a regular basis. Random walkthroughs and class visits don’t always give this immersed feeling because they are quick and the administrator tends to be a bystander to the activity instead of actively engaged. Principal (or any administrator) read alouds provide an intentional and meaningful experience to the principal and the students. In this post, J. Kapuchuck, @principalkap a principal at Plains …

The Power of Principal Read Alouds Read more »

I’m often asked by teachers and schools how to get started using Twitter. Our school team has been fortunate enough to help many other schools begin their social media journeys by providing social media workshops. At these workshops, we typically provide a tip sheet to give teachers to take away with them as reminders or extra ideas. Read more in this post for the latest version of that handout to see if that is something that could benefit you or your school.

A goal without a plan is just a wish. If it matters, follow through, work the goal every single day, make it a priority, and success will be inevitable. Don’t let your speed bumps along the way turn into stop lights and stop you from accomplishing your goals. Recently our school teams met with me to discuss mid-year progress towards our professional goals. In our school division, every staff member writes a Professional Growth Plan with specific goals to grow professionally and to better impact student performance. At Ashland Elementary, we write goals to target at-risk students and …

Don’t Let Your Speed Bumps Turn Into Stop Lights Read more »

The ‘One Word’ movement originated by Jon Gordan and has been a fantastic way to retool every January, sort of like a more thoughtful New Year’s resolution. As I write this post about my #OneWord2018 for others so that it will hopefully help them reflect, posts like this are major introspective moments in my leadership journey. I write to articulate where I want to be, not necessarily where I am. 

Happy (Early) New Year! As you are wrapping up the last few days of 2017, taking in those last hugs, smiles, high fives, and waves for a few days we (Lindsy, Eric, Jessica, Andy, Todd, and Nick) wanted to challenge ourselves, and our PLN, to think about how to ring in 2018 when everyone returns. This post started as a conversation while preparing for the final days before break. We realized that there is so much time spent on celebrating the last few days before the winter break, but not as much time focused on how to kick …

20 ‘18’ Ways to Start the New Year Read more »

It is critical that students know how they are performing and what they need to do to improve on their skills to be fully invested every day to achieve their learning goals. Student-led conferences are one way to support this effort, and research for many years has stated the positive aspects of involving students in this way. In a study almost twenty years old, parents have expressed their support for this shift, “as one that focused on the whole child, fosters more student-led accountability, and accentuates positive attributes about their child’s learning” (Conderman, et. al, 1998, p 134). So why has it …

Let Student Lead! Making a Case for Student-Led Conferences Read more »