2018 Elementary Principals Convention

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The 2018 Elementary Principals Convention will take place from October 10-12, 2018 at the KI Center in Green Bay. Eric Hartwig and Baruti Kafele will present our keynote sessions and the convention will feature over twenty sessions focused on Elementary Leadership. 

Please review the program and register today!

Full refund of fees will be made on cancellations received 10 days prior to the start of the convention. Following that date, a 40% administrative fee will be retained. There will be no refund for no-shows or cancellations during the event. 

*For questions about accessibility or to request special assistance during the event, please contact Kathy Gilbertson at kathy@awsa.org. Three weeks advance notice is required to allow us to provide seamless access. If you need to cancel the special request this must be done at least 3 working days prior to the start of the event. 

Hotel Information
A block of rooms has been reserved at the Hyatt Regency for convention attendees. When making reservations please ask for the "AWSA 2018 Annual Convention" block. There are a limited number of blocked rooms and they may sell out before that date so we recommend that you make your reservations soon.

Block of Rooms at the Hyatt:
Overnight: $124 single/double
Block will expire on: 9/14/18
Call: (920) 432-1234
Book online
Ask for: AWSA 2018 Annual Convention

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

11:00 - 4:00 PM Pre-Convention Registration

Pre-Convention Sessions

12:30 - 4:00 PM

1. Elementary Principals Legal Seminar - Malina Piontek, AWSA Retained Counsel; Jina Jonen, Legal Counsel and Human Resources Director, Oregon School District and Melissa Thiel Collar, Legal Counsel, Green Bay Area School District

Elementary principals who attend this session will spend the afternoon with three school law attorneys on everyday issues they face in the school. Malina, Jina, and Melissa will provide an interactive session focused on the latest developments relevant to elementary principals including:  custody issues; technology Issues relating to public and pupil records, use of private devices at work, and using programs like Go Guardian and Securely to monitor student devices; what is and is not bullying; employee handbooks; and the essentials of conducting investigations.  Bring your questions!

2:00 - 4:00 PM

2. Improving School Climate Through Restorative Practices - Christine DeBoer, Appleton West Dean of Students 

This session will provide an overview of Restorative Practices. Interactive experiences will bring you to a full understanding of the fundamental unifying premise of restorative practices—that people are happier, more cooperative and productive and more likely to make positive changes in their lives when those in positions of authority do things with them rather than to them or for them.  

3.  Planning for Your Retirement - Joel Craven, Owner, Astrais Financial LLC (Horace Mann)
This session will provide information on the three legs of a solid retirement: the WI Retirement System, Social Security and personal savings (e.g. Roth, 403(b) plans, etc.).  The session will also cover what educators should know about putting savings to good use and public service loan forgiveness.  Come with your questions and leave better prepared for your future.

5:00 - 6:00 PM

Welcome Reception


Thursday, October 11, 2018

7:00 - 4:20 PM   Registration

7:45 - 8:15 AM  New Principal’s Breakfast sponsored by Meemic

If you are a new elementary principal please come to this informal breakfast to meet AWSA executive staff and other new and experienced leaders.
Meemic Logo

8:30 AM    Welcome

Opening Keynote 

8:45 - 11:30 AM

Enhancing Effective Principal Practices to Improve Student Behavioral Health - Eric Hartwig, Consultant

In the beginning, most children start from the same place, although the effects of biology, environmental conditions and life experiences make the differences we see.  Principals recognize that children who have not been provided critical competencies and support for positive behavioral health do not access experiences that encourage social emotional and behavioral growth. This session will explore effective leadership practices that positively impact students’ behavioral health, including emerging guidance on:

  • The importance of Universal screening,
  • Matching individual needs to intervention strategies,
  • Evaluating the response to these interventions at a classroom and building level,
  • Providing effective support to teachers to build capacity and meaningful relationships, and
  • Taking advantage of new State-wide resources to help maintain sustainability   

Social-emotional learning is not a curriculum, nor is school culture written in a book. It is "lived learning", it is about good practice, creating schools that children and staff want to go guided by nurturing school-based caregiving and caregivers with focused building leadership. Effective principal practice is essential to creating and maintaining schools where all students can be safe, feel safe and thrive.

10:00 - 10:15 AM  Break

11:30 - 12:00 PM  Lunch sponsored by Meemic

Meemic Logo

 

 

 

12:00 - 12:20 PM  Dessert with Exhibitors

Concurrent Sessions Round One 

12:30 - 1:45 PM  

1.  Closing Opportunity Gaps for Students With Special Needs - Jessica Champion, Principal, Bannach Elementary School, Stevens Point 

How do you close the achievement gap for students with special needs?  That’s the million-dollar question all districts and schools are facing today.  This winter, our school was surprised to find out that we were nominated for the National Blue Ribbon Schools Award for closing the gap.  We would like to invite you to join this session to hear our story.  The discussion will include changing mind-sets, re-shaping classroom practices, creating a deeper sense of community, all of which we believe have been contributing factors in our work toward maximizing opportunities for all students to be able to reach their potential.

2.  Maximizing instructional Coaching: Improve and Sustain a Culture of Teaching and Learning - Tammy Gibbons, Director of Professional Learning, AWSA

If you have a reading specialist, a math coach, or any version of an instructional coach in your school, your relationship matters.  Monitoring the impact of coaching on a school culture, student performance and staff engagement is an important role of a school leader.  This session will explore some strategies and protocols for working with building coaches to ensure excellence for all.

3.  Leading for Equity - Joe Schroeder, Associate Executive Director, AWSA

While there is much to celebrate in education in Wisconsin, the exceedingly large and persistent achievement gaps are certainly not one of them! But while these gaps are persistent, they are not insurmountable. This session will highlight key approaches for leaders in addressing the problem, resources available, and potential next steps for leadership action. The session will also provide participants with means for helping self and others examine underlying beliefs, which, in many ways, are often at the heart of any significant effect to ensure excellent learning and opportunities for every Wisconsin student.

4.  Surviving and Thriving: How Classroom Teachers can Make a Difference - Eric Hartwig, Consultant

School based professionals can have a dramatic and powerful influence on a child's behavioral, emotional and social development, particularly when the timing, the content and level of the support matches the childes' needs. Although many teachers are creative, caring and compassionate, many also feel overwhelmed and resort to the most frustrating solutions. Classroom teachers play a central role in the identification of childhood problems and represent the primary agent for carrying out the social function of the school. Their skills can be sharpened by professional training and guided experience. This session will focus on the need to embrace universal interventions which encourage practices that help enhance teachers skills to help themselves and to help children to not only survive but thrive.    

1:45 - 2:00 PM   Break with Exhibitors 

Concurrent Sessions Round Two

2:05 - 3:20  

1.  Formative Assessment as Part of Your Strategic Assessment System – Sheila Weihert, Principal, Arboretum Elementary School, Waunakee

As school leaders, we need to be proficient in our strategic assessment systems.  Formative assessment is the engine of any assessment system in making a difference for our students.  Both formative assessment and feedback place in the top ten evidence-based practices in John Hattie’s “Visible Learning.” What makes an assessment formative is not what it is, but how it is used.  This session will focus on developing formative assessment practices to grow student learning in your school. 

2.  Maximizing instructional Coaching: Improve and Sustain a Culture of Teaching and Learning - Tammy Gibbons, Director of Professional Learning, AWSA

If you have a reading specialist, a math coach, or any version of an instructional coach in your school, your relationship matters.  Monitoring the impact of coaching on a school culture, student performance and staff engagement is an important role of a school leader.  This session will explore some strategies and protocols for working with building coaches to ensure excellence for all.

3.  People, Purpose, and Priorities: Practical Approaches For Expanding Your Impact - Joe Schroeder, Associate Executive Directors, AWSA

Perhaps the greatest challenge of school leadership is that, by design, multiple people with multiple demands compete for your singular time! This session will provide three powerful tools that the thoughtful, skillful leader can put in place tomorrow to keep people, purpose, and priorities at the center despite these typical effectiveness/efficiency challenges to the role. The three tools presented will be new, value-adds to content shared for years by Joe Schroeder via the Managing to Lead (M2L) workshop, but will be equally helpful and relevant whether or not you have attended an M2L workshop in the past.

4.  Surviving and Thriving: How Classroom Teachers Can Make a Difference - Eric Hartwig, Consultant

School based professionals can have a dramatic and powerful influence on a child's behavioral, emotional and social development, particularly when the timing, the content and level of the support matches the childes' needs. Although many teachers are creative, caring and compassionate, many also feel overwhelmed and resort to the most frustrating solutions. Classroom teachers play a central role in the identification of childhood problems and represent the primary agent for carrying out the social function of the school. Their skills can be sharpened by professional training and guided experience. This session will focus on the need to embrace universal interventions which encourage practices that help enhance teachers skills to help themselves and to help children to not only survive but thrive.     

Roundtable Sessions  

3:30-4:00 and 4:05-4:35

1. Effective Formative Assessment Practices – Sheila Weihert, Principal, Arboretum Elementary
Formative assessment is the engine of any assessment system in making a difference for our students.  This session will highlight formative assessment practices that grow student learning.  In addition, participants will be asked to share successes and challenges regarding formative assessment practices in their schools.

 
2. Personalizing Professional Development – Sue Sterner, Principal, Magee Elementary School, Chris Otto, Principal Wales Elementary School, and Jeremy Monday, Dousman Elementary School, Kettle Moraine
This session will: a) share personalized learning practices that provide choice and voice to teachers with professional development opportunities, including using Google surveys and tools to organize the choices and connecting the learning to PPG's, and, b) utilizing microcredential opportunities to impact teacher learning and ultimately student learning.
 
3. PLC: An Everyday Commitment - Rob Vanderloop, Principal, Independence Elementary
The Independence School District will share its journey of creating a PLC in a small, rural setting.  This journey is five years in the making and our PLC doesn’t just happen one day a week.  We will share how the PLC process is embedded in almost every decision we make.  The systematic teams we have created build a true sense of shared leadership.  Our district has made a commitment to learn from the best in the business, and we can’t wait to learn and grow when sharing our journey with others.  
 
4.  Keeping Students Healthy, Safe, Engaged, Supported and Challenged: State Supports for Student Mental Health - Becky Collins, Director, Student Services/Prevention and Wellness Team, DPI
In this roundtable session, current state and federal initiatives designed to enhance or support student mental health will be discussed. Topics may include categorical aid reimbursement, collaborative mental health grants, student mental health training opportunities, current resources available for schools, and related “hot topic” issues. 
 
5. Learning and Leading in the First Few Years - Joe Schroeder, Associate Executive Director, AWSA
This roundtable will help administrators think through and anticipate areas of greatest priority/need as they move through the first few years of their leadership tenure in a school community—and attempt to take it to the next level.
 
6. Comprehensive Math Workshop Models – Dawn Marisch, Director of Elementary Student Learning, Muskego-Norway
Every math teacher an expert. Every math student proficient. Muskego-Norway has focused on deepening a teacher’s understanding of mathematics and addressing student needs based on data through effective instructional practices within a math workshop.  Processes that grow deep math understanding and math workshop tools will be shared, along with approaches to professional development and instructional coaching. Participants in this session will discuss workshop formats that incorporate purposeful small group instruction based on data and implementation strategies to reach every learner.
 
7.  Growing Teachers Through Meaningful Feedback - Nicole Steinmetz, Principal, Augusta School District
While pressure on educators grows so do the initiatives, the disengagement, and levels of frustration from those within the profession. Instead of bombarding educators with one initiative after another, efforts should be concentrated on narrowing the focus of our resources on research-based approaches that are proven to have a high-impact on student achievement. Engaging and empowering educators in processes that build systems for continuous improvement offer great promise for greater student and school success. Learn how high-quality feedback, embedded within an instructional coaching framework that engages teachers in a meaningful manner, can lead schools on a journey towards becoming a learning leader. 
 
9.  Analyzing Teaching for Student Results: A Process to Promote Increased Learning for ALL Students - Andrea Sheridan, Director of Teaching, Learning and Leadership Integration, Wausau School District
The Wausau School District began its fourth year of full implementation of the Wisconsin Educator Effectiveness System in fall 2017.   At the conclusion of the past two school years, every educator and administrator throughout the State of Wisconsin was given the opportunity to complete an Educator Effectiveness survey produced by the Wisconsin Center for Educational Research.  The survey data for the Wausau School District indicated classroom teachers felt the system could be improved if building level leaders provided more explicit feedback following classroom observations.  
 
Our district made the decision to invite building level administrators to attend an extensive training, called Analyzing Teaching for Student Results, or AWSA’s ATSR Academy.  The objective of this adult learning was to develop administrative capacity to enhance the evaluation process and promote increased learning for all students.  Join me, to learn more about this learning process in the Wausau School District as we work to advance student learning, achievement, and success.  
 
10. Maximizing Feedback Through EE - Kathy Andreasen, Principal, North Freedom Elementary, Baraboo
Learn how the Baraboo School District is maximizing feedback and professional growth through the WI Educator Effectiveness System.  Principal leaders will share how the district has aligned strategies to meet goals of the district strategic plan and strengthen instructional practice through teacher collaboration.  The impact of having reliable observation data (walkthroughs and evaluation) informs instructional priorities so that principals provide specific feedback to teachers for student growth.  Also, hear how the district has increased its evaluator reliability and decreased time demands through ongoing calibrations and the creation of a multi-rater system.

11. State Resources and Support to Assess and Strengthen School Safety
The Legislature closed the 2017-19 Legislative session by passing a $100 million school safety package into law. This session will provide an overview of school safety resources, including the new grant program created under this law.

5:00 - 6:00 PM                    

Reception (Sponsored by Lifetouch)

 

Friday, October 12, 2018

7:00 - 8:15 AM  Optional Fellowship Breakfast

School administrators support the boundless needs of those they lead and serve.  But who supports them – particularly in ways tending to the heart and spirit?  AWSA’s Associate Executive Director, Dr. Joe Schroeder will facilitate this breakfast conversation with those interested in exploring how we can support the heart, spirit, and mind of the school administrator in his/her leadership journey.  

7:45 - 8:00 AM Breakfast Buffet and Preview of the 2019-21 Legislative Session

Concurrent Sessions Round Three

8:45 - 10:00 AM

1.   Is My School Better Because I Am Leading It? - Baruti Kafele, Principal and Speaker

Principal Kafele will take participants on a self-reflective journey that will challenge them to view critically who they are as the leaders of their schools which will include the intentionality behind all aspects of their practice. He will challenge participants to look within themselves for deeper meaning of their own personal worth to their schools. As one principal recently stated, “This session has forced me to look at my leadership through a new set of lenses!”

2.  High Impact Leadership: Having Conversations that Matter - Tammy Gibbons, Director of Professional Learning, AWSA 

Whether it be about student performance, instructional practice or adult behavior, are you effectively delivering  a message, helping others to reflect, or inspiring productivity through your conversations?  This pre-conference session will allow participants to learn and practice a few skills for productive, impactful conversations with those we serve to include teachers, parents, colleagues, etc.  Learn the basics to having a productive crucial conversation and consider how varying personalities and roles may require different levels of coaching and support.

3.  Making a Difference: Adjusting the Daily Schedule to Impact Student Learning - Amy Fassbender, Principal, Gordon Willson Elementary, Baraboo

As administrators we have the ability to impact student learning in a variety of ways. One way that we can do this is by ensuring that the daily schedule maximizes time for student learning. It also should provide time for staff to collaborate as Professional Learning Communities.  During this discussion, administrators will hear how one school adjusted their daily schedule to positively impact student learning. They will hear about the process used to achieve this and learn how strategies that they can use in their own schools.

10:00 Break

Closing Keynote

10:15 - 11:30 AM

Critical Leadership Questions for Inspiring Schoolwide Excellence - Baruti Kafele

Why do I lead?  With this deceptively simple question, Principal Kafele begins a powerful examination of what it takes to make a school community achieve great success in the classroom and beyond. He will guide principals and aspiring principals through several self-reflection questions designed to yield a deeper understanding of the meaning behind the work they do which will include how best to inspire and motivate students, teachers, and other school staff to approach their work with vigor and purpose.

11:30 Adjourn