Filtered by category: Leadership Clear Filter

Measuring Up: ATLIS Announces 2021 Compensation Benchmark Report

ATLIS once again partnered with Ed Tech Recruiting to update its popular benchmark report focusing on what technology leaders earn in the way of salaries and benefits in their roles at independent schools. The 2021 Compensation Benchmark Report for Technology Leaders in Schools provides in-depth analysis that looks at compensation through a wide variety of lenses, giving tech leaders ample opportunity to have meaningful conversations around compensation. [10-minute read]

By Christina Lewellen, Executive Director

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One More Time: Let’s Not Go Back to Normal

This post provides a window into the inspiration we expect to hear from Will Richardson, co-founder of The BIG Questions Institute and keynote for the ATLIS 2021: Undaunted Annual Conference on April 13. Spend some time with the new BQI ebook 9 BIG Questions Schools Must Answer to Avoid Going "Back to Normal" (*Because Normal Wasn't That Great to Begin With) before the virtual conference on April 12-13 and you'll be even more prepared to dig into the questions that matter for our community as we address how we can sustain innovations achieved in the past year and look ahead to plan the kinds of schools we hope to create for post-pandemic learners. -- SD [10-minute read]

coverGuest Blogger: Will Richardson
Co-founder, The BIG Questions Institute
Keynote: ATLIS 2021: Undaunted Annual Conference

I know there’s been a lot of talk of late about getting back to “normal” and the quest to regain some of our old rhythms in life. Everyone is exhausted. We just want to stop having to think about all of this and find some predictability.  




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ATLIS Virtual Town Hall 10 February 2021: Rethinking School with Special Guest Homa Tavangar

This virtual town hall begins with an introduction to Homa Tavangar, keynote speaker for ATLIS 2021 Undaunted, and a discussion of the wellbeing of the educators and their profession. This exposes a natural connection to the new Big Questions Institute ebook, 9 BIG Questions Schools Must Answer to Avoid Going "Back to *Normal" (*Because "Normal" Wasn't That Great to Begin With). This led to a deeper dive into the impact of the pandemic on the personnel who have kept schools up and running and a closer look at the evolution PD for reaching overloaded teachers who shut down at the prospect of "one more thing." - SD [10-minute read; 1-hour video]

Quick Links

  • February 10, 1 pm Eastern: Save the date for our next Virtual Town Hall. Registration is required for new Virtual Town Hall participants and is free and open to all. If you have previously registered, you will automatically receive an invitation to join. 
  • Complete Virtual Town Hall Video Archive (Wakelet)

ATLIS Virtual Town Hall
February 10, 2021
Video Archive


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20 Years in Edtech, 20 Lessons Learned

Curt Lieneck is legendary among independent school technology leaders. When he began posting tweets last Fall gleaned from his decades of experience in the field, we paid attention. Happily, Lieneck has allowed ATLIS to collect his wisdom into this blog post. It's actually 21 tips, but who's counting. -- SD [10-minute read]

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Meet FACTS President Scott Spethman


  
March seems like such a long time ago, doesn’t it?
It was a month filled with fear, doubt, and (in case you haven’t heard this word often enough) uncertainty. But I remember feeling one thing in particular: Confidence. I felt confident that the world of education would rise to the challenge and adapt – and that my team would do the same.
I’m incredibly happy to report that my confidence wasn’t unfounded.

Maintaining Communication no Matter What
This was a year of change for education and educators alike. FACTS associates have been working from home since March. Like many others, we’re constantly on video calls and working remotely to support our schools. Our communication channels may have changed, but I’m proud of our associates for stepping up to maintain our level of service for our partner schools. Even though we miss visiting campuses and chatting with clients at conferences and events, we’ve made do. It was our goal to be there for our clients – a constant, comforting presence whenever they needed us.

Addressing Trends and Concerns from the Independent School Community
The education industry shifted drastically in early 2020. FACTS shifted as well. We put an emphasis on helping schools prepare to offer more personalized education. We focused on 1:1 learning, more flexible school models, parent communication – we even built out a COVID-19 resource center that our independent school partners could use throughout the year. Another big focus for us has been addressing the social-emotional needs of students. We’ve reevaluated the ways we (and schools) can communicate with students and families. And we’re doing everything we can to make the process smoother for everyone – like improving our Family App.

FACTS' COVID-19 Resource Center
The Future of FACTS
We’re well-positioned to support the 11,500 schools and three million families we work with, regardless of the status of COVID-19. I’m particularly excited about the enhancements we have planned for our SIS. It’s already very sophisticated, but we’re planning to build it out even more over the next year. On top of that, we’ll be enhancing our Application & Enrollment product, and introducing our new open API to continue supporting the goals of our partner schools. The confidence I had back in March hasn’t wavered – it’s actually gotten stronger. We’ll be ready to help our partners move forward in 2021.

Looking Forward to the Post-COVID Era
Selfishly, I can’t wait to travel back to Chicago for a Portillo’s Italian Beef. (If you haven’t been there, I highly recommend it.) But on a more serious note, I miss having contact with the team and our customers on a regular basis. Human connection is something we all crave – and I’m no exception. Over the past 33 years, much of my career has been spent on the road. For the first time in a long while, I’ve been at home for eight straight months. When it’s safe to do so, I look forward to spending time relaxing with friends, sharing meals with clients, and making new connections.

Hello 2021/Goodbye 2020 Pop-Up PULSE Survey

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ATLIS December Summit-- Leading Together (Video Archive)

ATLIS Summit: Leading Together -- Why Administrative Partnerships Matter
December 16, 2020

As the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to leave its mark on our schools, technology leaders have risen to prominence as key figures to rely upon for determining how to manage in the crisis and meet the missions of the schools they serve. The success of their partnerships with colleagues across the administrative team has depended upon openness, transparency, and collaboration to serve the mission of the schools they serve. Guests panelists from AISAP and MISBO join ATLIS Executive Director Christina Lewellen to share important ways for technology leaders to team up with Admissions and Finance officers to help their schools thrive amidst the pandemic and beyond.


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ATLIS Executive Director Shares 2020 Holiday Message

In this post at the end of a challenging year, Christina Lewellen, Executive Director of ATLIS, shares a holiday message for the independent school technology leaders in our community. -- SD [10-minute read] 

I usually look forward to decking out the house in holiday lights, and I’ve been known to spend days shuffling ladders and adorning surfaces high and low with my LED color palette of the year. 

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Asking Vendors the Right Questions About Data Protection

At a recent ATLIS webinar, industry experts were invited stock share a "Cybersecurity Update" for our community. As the webinar came to a close, a vital question remained unanswered in the chat, so we followed up with our panelists for an answer. In this post, you will find responses from Buddy Pitt, Director of Technical Development for the Network Support Company, and Alex Inman, Founder and Senior Collaborator for Educational Collaborators, on asking vendors the right questions about data protection.  [10-minute read; video archive included in resources]

What are the best questions to be asking our vendors to ensure that we are getting the information about security or prevention measures they have in place, their data retention policies, etc.?

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ATLIS October Summit: New Systems & Processes (Video Archive)

ATLIS Summits on special topics invite members of the community to share insights and innovations in an informal panel format. The October Summit was dedicated to Reinventing the Wheel -- New Systems & Process Under COVID-19. 

summit bannerReinventing the Wheel -- New Systems & Processes Under COVID-19  
October 28, 2020

Technology leaders thrive in a world of systems and processes. Yet the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many to rethink, reinvent, or totally create new ways to address how technologies are integrated into the way a school works. 
Topics/Panelists include: 
Tracking Attendance Revisited -- Vinnie Vrotny, Director of Technology, The Kinkaid School, TX
Google Solutions for Dismissal and Calendar Integrations -- Richard Anderson, Director of of Academic Technology, Washington International School, DC; Eileen Ford, Educational Technology Specialist, Trinity Valley School, TX; Nicholas Marchese, Director of Academic Technology, Emma Willard School, NY
Policies and Procedures for Teaching from Home -- Anne Sena, Director of Technology, St. David’s School, NC
This Summit  is available FREE to ATLIS members; $59 for non-members.
Access the October Summit Archive

ATLIS Virtual Town Hall 14 October 2020: Where We Are Now

As schools across our community begin to settle in to new learning and working environments, technology leaders from the ATLIS community continue to find value in sharing and reflecting on their experiences with their peers. In this Virtual Town Hall, we looked back on the journey of the past few months, shared what school looks like now in the many varieties of hybrid learning that have sprung up, and began to think about what has evolved in the larger perspective of education as well as what lies ahead. -- SD [15-minute read, 1-hour video]

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14+ Ways Technology & Admissions Teams Can Partner for Success

Recently, Larry Kahn, Chief Technology Officer, and Alice Pritchett, Director of Admissions and Financial Aid, from Trinity Valley School, TX, shared the secrets of their successful partnership with Susan Davis, Professional Development Director, ATLIS. The following post is a recap of their conversation. [10-minute read; 1-hour video]

blog banner campus with fall foliageFall is a time for pumpkin-strewn campuses, eager questions from potential parents, and gaggles of wide-eyed students wandering the halls to see what a new independent school can offer. Admissions events are essential to the growth and sustainability of any independent school, yet the COVID-19 pandemic has turned school admissions events for Fall 2020 upside-down.

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ATLIS Virtual Town Hall: School Opening Update (9 September 2020)

Our September Virtual Town Hall gave a glimpse into the realities of what school reopening has looked like for technology leaders across the country. We asked participants to share what school looks like for them -- whether it is fully online, hybrid/hi-flex, or face-to-face. Much of our conversation focused on providing the right kind of devices to teachers who are delivering content to both in-person and online learners. We ended with a number of nagging questions that still keep tech leaders up at night and some practical advice about how to deal with help desk overload fueled by pandemic anxieties and the new technologies schools are adding into the mix. -- SD [10-minute read; 1-hour video] 

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ATLIS Summit: Technology-Fueled Health Solutions for Schools (Video Archive)

In this post we share the video archive from our latest Summit -- focusing on Technology-Fueled Health Solutions for Schools. Experts and practitioners responded to our essential question by sharing thought leadership on effective communication about health protocols and resources, designing health plans for returning to school, zone tracking of individuals on campus for contact tracing, and data-driven decision making. Thank you to Jin-Soo Huh of The Parabola Project; Valerie Bourbeau of Magnus Health; Daisy Steele of Catlin Gabel School (OR); and Justin Cullifer of WellEntry for providing their insights on this critical issue facing schools today. -- SD [5-minute read; 1-hour video] 

ATLIS Summit: Technology-Fueled Health Solutions for Schools
August 26, 2020
Video Archive


Our Essential Question: How can technology address health solutions for reopening school? 
Our Panel



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Free Isn't a Feature -- Deploying Ed Tech in the Age of Coronavirus

Reposted from her LinkedIn post of 4 July 2020, Jennifer Carey's thought leadership assesses the value of "free" tools offered to technology leaders during the coronavirus pandemic. Carey, Director of Technology & Innovation at Temple Beth Am Day School in Miami, FL, and member of the ATLIS Board, provides guidance for a community that has been deluged with complications from the numerous offerings of online tools made to teachers and schools. [10-minute read] -- SD

Jennifer Carey
When Coronavirus first impacted US Schools in March, educational institutions scrambled to deploy distance learning with little to no planning or training for faculty. During the rash of school closures, numerous technology companies stepped forward to offer their services for "free."

Initially, many viewed this as a generous, self-sacrificing offer to help schools over the hump of going virtual. Many schools, driven in desperation, quickly took these companies up on their offers, rapidly (often without vetting) deploying numerous new resources to teachers and students. However, the results of this haphazard deployment resulted in numerous problems that at best created confusion through new complexity and at worst, created a privacy and data security nightmare for schools.

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ATLIS Summit: Making Informed Decisions for the Journey Ahead

Informed Summit banner

For this  ATLIS Summit, we crowdsourced ways to access and leverage data to address the many decisions that are confronting schools as they plan to continue to meet the needs of students in the months ahead. Access the archived video for the complete Summit that is outlined in brief in this post. -- SD

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Don’t forget about bandwidth in your remote and hybrid learning plans

There is a lot of talk about what school is going to look like in September and a lot of questions that have come with it. Will we open online? What will our schedule look like? Will we have some kids or teachers in the building and some at home? Blended? Hybrid? Synchronous? Asynchronous? The questions go on and on…

Cross-posted from the blog of William Stites, Technology Director at Montclair Kimberley Academy and ATLIS Pillar Award Winner

One clear thing is that we will be using some form of technology to connect people that are in one place to those in another. With this, there are many hardware pieces to consider and how they will fit a school’s unique learning plan.

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5 Reflection Protocols to Cement Learning and Iterate Innovations

In this post, we make the argument for building reflection into your end-of-year practices, especially after the major disruptions and changes we have encountered during COVID-19. Continued innovation and improvement needs this reinforcement to become sticky. Technology leaders can use the examples provided here for their own reflection to to guide the reflections at their schools. -- SD  [15-minute read]


Dewey on ReflectionAs we wrap up the school year drive-by graduation ceremonies and teleconferenced  awards celebrations, we need to take a deep breath and make time to reflect on the rapid changes and developments that have occurred in the past few weeks as schools responded to the global pandemic of COVID-19. 

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Sustaining Innovation Summit

Numerous innovations have evolved out of necessity as independent schools responded to COVID-19. The harder question remains, How can we sustain those innovations into the future?  In this blog post, we recap the innovations and ideas for sustaining them that grew from our recent summit. - SD  [10-minute Read]

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ATLIS Virtual Town Hall , 15 April 2020: Scheduling, Screen Fatigue, and End-of-Year Rituals

As we wrap up this extraordinary school year, technology leaders are being drafted to discuss end-of-year community rituals and how to address assessments in a virtual landscape. They also face planning for “after school” offerings, summer programs and projects and a very uncertain school year ahead. Participants also provided frank feedback on the ways vendors can best support technology leaders’ efforts to manage and deliver online the many components of their school communities. Finally, their thoughts turned to the leadership role they can play at their schools if they are included in the right conversations and if others understand better all that they do. -- SD

[15-minute read; 1-hour video]

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