August 23rd Edition 

AWSA Update

With Whom Do You Stand?

So as we enter a new school with all its many opportunities and challenges a rousing question to ponder is, with whom do you stand?  Who is the student or population of students within your community regularly misunderstood, most in need of an ally? How can you help their voices be heard, appreciated, and encouraged? Read more.

Elementary Principals’ Convention- Register Today! (2 New Sessions Added)

The Convention will feature sessions by Dr. Anthony Muhammad, Jessica Cabeen, high-impact school leaders, and AWSA thought leaders.  Join your colleagues for this fantastic learning opportunity October 11-13, 2023, in Brookfield.  Learn more and register here.

Important updates:

  • Sessions have been added on 2023 WI Act 20 on early literacy, as well as AI in Action for elementary leaders.

  • The hotel room block closes 9/11/23- so reserve your room today!

KNOW YOUR AWSA SERVICES: Critical Communication Services Available to You

Effective school leaders engage their communities in meaningful ways to promote student success. AWSA provides crisis response support and proactive communication tools and templates that support effective communication and engagement through its partnership with the Donovan Group, a Wisconsin-based communications firm exclusively serving public schools. Read more.

DPI Launches Wisconsin Special Educator Induction Program

The nation is facing staffing challenges in education and Wisconsin is no exception. Special education often experiences the greatest shortage among educators. Read more.

Herb Kohl Foundation Now Accepting Teacher & Principal Nominations for Awards 

Nominations of Wisconsin PK through 12 teachers and principals can now be submitted online at for the 2024 Herb Kohl Educational Foundation teacher Fellowship and principal Leadership awards. The deadline for submission is Tuesday, October 3, 2023 at 5 p.m. central time. Awards are $6,000, with an additional $6,000 grant going to the school of each selected teacher and principal. Read more.


August 9th Edition 

AWSA Update

First AWSA Executive Director Leaves Lasting Legacy in Wisconsin Education

Charles R. "Chuck" Hilston, executive director Emeritus of the Association of Wisconsin School Administrators (AWSA), passed away Friday, July 21, 2023.  Chuck embodied exemplary leadership qualities throughout his life.  He was curious, kind, strategic, and committed to positively impacting the world around him.  Whether or not one had the privilege of ever actually meeting Chuck in person, we all owe a deep debt of gratitude to one of our founding leaders and ceaseless advocates of our profession. Read More

Harnessing the Power of A.I. for WI School Leaders

At the end of the last school year, we asked members about their interest in professional learning about using AI in our day-to-day work.  The interest was very strong and the preferred mode of learning was online.  In response, this month AWSA will begin a three-part webinar series on harnessing the power of AI in day-to-day tasks, streamlining processes, unlocking insights from data, and directly supporting student success. Read More

2023 Wisconsin Act 20 – Early Literacy Instruction, Curriculum and Assessments

On July 19th, Governor Evers signed Assembly Bill 321 into law.  During the 2023-24 school year, much of the work required of districts will be in preparation for the 2024-25 school year.  The 2023-25 biennial budget includes $50 million in the Joint Committee on Finance’s supplemental appropriation for efforts to improve reading and literacy outcomes for K-12 students, including those included in 2023 Wisconsin Act 20. Read More

Mental Health Funding in the State Budget

The 2023-25 State Budget provided additional funding for mental health support for our students.  The $25 million in funding for school based mental health support will go out on a per pupil basis over the biennium.  The Legislative Fiscal Bureau has estimated that in the first year of the budget school districts will receive an estimated $31 per pupil in the school year 2023-24.  Read More

We Didn’t Know What We Didn’t Know: First Year Superintendent, First Year Principal 

The excitement of a new administrator role, new district, and new school year is unmatched. You know you’re doing important work and that staff and students are counting on you. You’re ready for it. Then, as the year proceeds, you realize that the phrase, “You don’t even know what you don’t know,” is the truest definition of your first year. Challenges come at you fast, and the pressure whirlwind of the daily demands will wear you down. You must believe that you have what it takes and your enthusiasm for the work must be ever-present. Chris and Jess learned a few things in their first year and wanted to share them with you. Do they have it all figured out? Definitely not. But, at the end of the first year, they know they’re doing great work with great people for one of the greatest professions on earth. Here’s what they have far. Read More