National Charter Schools Conference sessions are differentiated by several different factors including Programming Strands, Content Level, and Session Format. For more information, download the session proposal template.
Sessions in the Governance strand focus on overseeing a charter school, whether as a board member, authorizer, or in another capacity. These roles come with their own set of responsibilities and challenges. Learn about board operations and training, strategic planning, judging school quality, charter renewals and other topics. Example sessions that were highly rated at the 2016 conference:
- Connecting the Dots: Board Roles, Responsibilities, and Relationships
- Strengthening Your Board: CEO/School Leader Partnership
- Beyond the Bake Sale: How to Build an Integrated Fundraising Strategy
- Diverse Voices From the Field: Building an Inclusive Culture
The Instruction strand presents advanced content in classroom management, curriculum, education strategies, teacher training and other classroom-specific topics. Teachers, curriculum specialists, special education teachers and school leaders are all welcome. Example sessions:
- Moving Away From Sage on the Stage Teaching: Targeted Group Structures
- Exploiting a Backdoor to the Brain: How to Hack the Affective Learning Domain for Easy Reading and Writing Skill Access
- Revision Strategies to Improve Student Writing and Increase Engagement
- Mindfulness: The Power of Pausing
The Leadership strand addresses the many challenges facing those who run today’s charter schools and trains those looking to run tomorrow’s. Topics include replication, succession planning, school culture, team building, hiring and working with staff, dealing with parents and more. Example sessions:
- Charter Schools: Breaking Ranks and Beating the Odds
- Hacking Culture and the Brain to Close the Income-Achievement Gap
- Emotional Intelligence: From Theory to Practice for School Leaders
- iMARKET: Marketing Your School to Increase Enrollment
From facilities to fiscal sustainability, communications and PR to professional development, the Operations strand provides back-office employees and those who support schools in other ways with the necessary tools to ensure long-term organizational health. Example sessions:
- Is Your School Safe? Analyzing and Mitigating School Threats
- Improve Your Hiring Acumen with Behavioral Interviewing
- School Daze: Navigating the Facilities Financing Maze
- Building Student Recruitment from the Inside Out
The political landscape impacts charter schools immensely, and those who align with the Policy strand are the ones who want to be kept abreast of the latest developments in district, state, and federal legislation and activism. Conversations focus on the big-picture vision for the future of the movement, advocacy, and overcoming policy-induced obstacles. Example sessions:
- Know the Rules to Win the Campaign
- Charter Restarts: Stakeholders Speak
- Addressing Child Trauma: Unlock the Door to Academic Success
- State Policy Trends for Charter Schools
Based on participant experience or knowledge:
Very basic content for attendees who are new to the topic or have less than three years with relatable content.
More in-depth content that goes beyond basics intended for attendees with at least 4 years of experience on the topic or relatable content.
In-depth analysis and discussion intended for attendees with 10 or more years of experience on the topic or relatable content.
Breakout Sessions (60 minutes)
Panel Discussions (2 to 3 speakers)
A diverse and focused discussion around a particular topic followed by audience Q&A.
Debates (2-3 Speakers)
A constructive moderated discussion between two leaders of opposing viewpoints, followed by audience Q&A.
Interview (2 Speakers)
A one-on-one interview with a significant leader.
Core Conversations (1-2 Speakers)
A speaker-led informal and open conversation with attendees around a particular topic.
Lecture (1 or 2 Speakers)
This is a traditional lecture format followed by audience Q&A.
Alternative Formats (Length Varies)
Hacks & Tips (1 speaker • 15 minutes)
A short presentation structured in a rapid-fire format to share tips and unique approaches.
(5-15 speakers • 60 minutes)
Subject matter experts are stationed around a room, and attendees rotate to hear from as many as presentations as possible.
Meet Up (1-2 Speakers • 60 min focus on networking)
These topic-focused networking events encourage attendees to connect with others who share similar passions or interests.
Intensives (120 minutes)
Workshops (1-3 Speakers)
An in-depth, instructional program with hands-on learning and specific takeaways.
Problem Solving (1-3 Speakers)
An interactive exercise designed to address a prevalent challenge where speakers facilitate a number of small group discussions to identify possible solutions.
Exhibit Hall Content (Length Varies)
Charter Talk (1 Speaker • under 18 minutes MUST submit video pitch to be considered)
A compelling presentation with a story arc to share a big idea, a tech demo, delve into an issue, or share a small idea with an impact.
Show & Tell (1-2 Speakers • 30 min)
A unique opportunity for organizations to showcase their products and services to the forward thinking community at NCSC17.
Playground Hands On (1-2 Speakers • 30 min)
A casual hands-on experience showcasing a particular idea.
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