Session times are only accessible to registered attendees on our conference platform, JUNO. 

NCSC21 will feature more than 60 breakout, keynote, and featured sessions. Explore the content below. You will be able to build your schedule directly within the event platform starting June 17, 2021. 

Featured Sessions
Engage Sessions
Educate Sessions
Innovate Sessions 


Remarks from U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona
Teachers are the lifeblood of education. Especially during the pandemic, teachers consistently went above and beyond, doing whatever was necessary to ensure their students were learning and felt loved and connected. It is an honor to celebrate the phenomenal educators of the charter sector, and we will be joined by U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. Secretary Cardona will address the charter school movement for the first time,  sharing his vision for PreK-12 education and offering insights into how charter schools can help fulfill that vision. The Secretary has pledged his commitment to elevating all forms of excellence in education, supporting diverse teachers, and cultivating a new generation of diverse school leaders who mirror the rich mosaic of students in American schools 

Supported, Seen, and Safe: What Students and Teachers Need in the Wake of COVID-19
If the overlapping traumas of the past year have shown us anything, it’s that student well-being is just as important as academic learning. The resilience displayed by students and educators this year was remarkable in the face of the great challenges to students’ mental well-being and learning. Building on that resilience and ensuring that students feel seen, known, supported, and safe are key to charting a successful year ahead. In this session, Dr. Priscilla Chan, co-founder and co-CEO of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), will join Vanessa Rodriguez, interim CEO for Citizens of the World Charter Schools, to discuss how schools can apply findings from the science of relationships to meet the needs of both educators and students alike, better support student well-being and accelerate learning.
Speakers: Priscilla Chan, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative; Vanessa Rodriguez, Citizens of the World Charter Schools


The Role of Black Institutions in the Charter School Movement
With local affiliates of organizations such as the National Urban League, 100 Black Men of America, and African American fraternities and sororities creating and operating several charter schools throughout the nation, what is and should be the role of Black institutions within the charter movement? Join us to discuss the role of civil rights, fraternal, historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), social and affinity groups in creating the next generation of public charter schools, joining school boards, and bringing real equity to the sector. 
Speakers: Roland Martin, host and managing editor, #RolandMartinUnfiltered; Esther L. Bush, President & CEO, Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh; Dr. Cecil Payton, Chairman of the Board, Empowerment Academy; Timothy Woods, 24th Western Province Polemarch, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.

Moral Courage: The No-Shaming Approach to Antiracism and Inclusion
Fear sows division. Research shows that what humans fear more than anything is being judged. That’s why shaming and feeling shamed are misguided remedies for racism. The truly inclusive alternative is “Moral Courage” — a method of engaging that heals existing divides while preventing new ones. In this fascinating fireside chat, the New York Times bestselling author and leadership scholar Irshad Manji will address the questions that so many educators are quietly asking: What's the role of empathy in the struggle for equity? How do we confidently communicate with students about highly emotional issues? For that matter, how do we do this with fellow faculty and parents?
Speakers: Irshad Manji, Moral Courage ED; Tre Johnson, DEI Partner, Catalyst: Ed

Don't Waste This Crisis: Not Going Back to Normal
his is not the time to go back to business as usual. The pandemic has propelled innovative uses of technology in teaching and learning – allowing students to learn at different paces, support each other, and grow together. Educators have moved from partnering with families to co-authoring with families for students’ educational and emotional journeys. School leaders must do everything possible to balance smart oversight and ensure student outcomes and experiences are prioritized while not inhibiting creative approaches for better student learning opportunities. Join us to discuss how lessons learned during the pandemic will change the future of education.
Speakers: Freddy Gonzalez, KIPP Foundation; Lagra Newman, Purpose Preparatory Academy; Karega Rausch, National Association of Charter Authorizers

A Civil Dialogue on Critical Race Theory
The question of whether or not to teach Critical Race Theory in U.S. classrooms is one of the most hotly debated topics of the day. The current generation of Pre-K-12 students is the most diverse in the history of our nation, and there are passionate views on both sides of the issue. We will get a grounding in what Critical Race Theory is and hear an update on state-level legislative activity, followed by a thoughtful discussion with two Black men, each of whom is a founder and school leader. They will share their thoughts on why they believe this is something that should be avoided or embraced.
Speakers: Ian Rowe, Founder, Vertex Academies; and Resident Fellow, AEI; Sharif El-Mekki, Founder and CEO, Center for Black Educator Development, Rob Reed, Vice President of Legal Affairs, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools; Debbie Veney, Senior Vice President, Communications, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

Girl Rising: Stories of Resilience, Courage & Change
A screening of the Girl Rising film, the centerpiece of a global non-profit organization that uses storytelling to raise awareness and ignite action so that girls everywhere are valued and educated. The Girl Rising film includes powerful stories about courageous girls around the world who confront barriers to their independence – including poverty, child marriage, violence, slavery, and tradition – and inspire students to think deeply about social justice, gender equity, global citizenship, and to believe in their capacity to raise their voices and create change.


Teacher Retention During Crisis
Have you struggled to prioritize teacher retention during this period of crisis? Are you wondering how to take meaningful action on teacher retention with limited staff capacity? In this session, we'll explore concrete strategies and resources to support your teacher retention efforts, always but in particular during times of crisis. 
Speaker: Kelly Gleischman, EdFuel

Building and Sustaining Community Engagement Beyond the Pandemic
When faced with an unprecedented global health crisis, the role of parents and families as essential learning partners and an increase in community-centered engagement efforts have proved how interdependent we truly are. This session will highlight tangible examples of shifts educators and school leaders made to meet the moment, build trust and relationships within school communities, and ways to continue and deepen engagement once schools reopen.
Speakers: Meredith Anderson, UNCF; Kenya Bradshaw, TNTP; Maya Martin, PAVE (Parents Amplifying Voices in Education); Naomi Shelton, National Charter Collaborative

Recruiting Students in a COVID World
Thanks to COVID, enrollment is down in schools across the country. The challenge is compounded by the fact that many of our most successful recruitment tactics -- high-touch, community-based outreach -- aren't available to us. Learn how organizations across the country -- from the largest charter networks to individual start-up schools -- are effectively navigating this challenge and the specific, actionable, battle-tested steps for implementing these tactics in your own community.
Speaker: Lyman Millard, Bloomwell Group

Charter Schools as True Community Anchors and Why It’s Important
Excellence Community Schools supports students and parents and investing in rich partnerships with small businesses and housing in the communities they serve. From Broadway artists to the corner store, Excellence Community Schools has created multiple pathways and partnerships that benefit both students and the community. Join Dr. Charlene Reid, CEO of Excellence Community Schools, as she discusses how the network has integrated individual schools into their respective neighborhoods as true anchor institutions.
Speaker: Charlene Reid, Excellence Community Schools

Parent Power Equals School Choice Survival
Families are a school's greatest assets when it comes to advocacy and action. Schools must partner with parents and ensure that they are in positions of power to make decisions that impact students and school choice. In this session, you will learn how to partner with parents, students, and staff to focus on the voting process and civic engagement. Build a voter block that increases and maintains parent vote, voice, and engagement. Elevate parents to decision-making seats (nominated or elected).
Speakers: Tafshier Cosby, National Parents Union; Wendy Gonzales-Neal, National Parents Union; Maritza Guridy, National Parents Union; Khulia Pringle, National Parents Union

Building a Bigger Tent for Charter School Advocacy: Authentic Parent Engagement
The single largest group of PreK-12 influencers are families. With 3.3 million students enrolled in charter schools last year, their parents are a powerful group. And yet, charter parents make up only a fraction of the entire PreK-12 parent population. This session will explore how the charter sector can find common ground with parent organizations and activists. These groups are dedicated, passionate and represent a diverse agenda, including education, civil rights, disabilities, housing, and more. If charter leaders are willing to support these groups and show up as true partners on a broader set of issues, it could be one of the most effective ways to build a bigger tent.
Speakers: Sarah Carpenter, The Memphis Lift; Keri Rodrigues, National Parents Union; Debbie Veney, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

The Right-Fit, Faster: Teacher Recruitment and Hiring for Small Networks and Single-Site Schools
It takes significant time and experience to build a repeatable recruitment process. Fortunately, there are key steps schools can take to effectively and efficiently find the right-fit candidates. In this session, we’ll cover the leading trends in teacher recruitment, practices, and tools that speed up and strengthen the sourcing and hiring process and how to mitigate common hiring biases that ultimately hold you and your students back. These lessons apply to schools of any size but focus on the unique challenges of small networks and single-site schools.
Speakers: Waine Tam, Selected; Alexandra Thorson, Selected

Be Prepared: Legal Considerations for the Return to In-Person Schooling
The world has changed a lot since schools started closing in March 2020 because of the pandemic. As schools returned to in-person classes, there are new challenges to face, new laws to know, and new policies to create. Come hear from two in-house counsels at CMOs that have successfully returned students to in-person learning. They will give an overview of what schools should be thinking about in terms of students, employees, finances, and policies, and new challenges.
Speakers: Christopher Hines, Crescent City Schools; Jessica Johnson, STRIVE Prep

Charter Schools, Congress, and the Biden Administration: Big Tent or Big No
COVID relief, facilities funding, accountability, the Charter Schools Program, new civil rights policies: how will congress and the administration impact charter schools this year? What are the top threats and opportunities, and how can you help?
Speakers: Sunil Mansukhani, The Raben Group; Christine Wolfe, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

Where’s the Line: Patriarchal Practices vs. Strong School Culture
How do you balance punitive and positive? Do practices work because they are based on repression vs. expression? Really - what is strong school culture? We believe it starts with the adults: improving school culture by transforming adult culture. Hear the lessons learned by two school leaders at different stages of their schools' journeys (one is its 3rd year, the other a seasoned school in its 10th year).
Speakers: Asish Kapadia, Central Queens Academy; Sonia Park, Diverse Charter Schools Coalition; Priscilla Walton, Elm Community Charter School

State Legislative Activity Round-Up
During the 2021 state legislative sessions, charter school supporters achieved several notable wins, both by advancing positive charter school bills and by stopping and mitigating anti-charter school legislation. At the same time, we continued to see damaging charter school bills gain a foothold in a handful of states. What states made gains? Which ones had to play a lot of defense? What are the implications of these wins and losses for 2022? Come to this session to discuss these critical questions.
Speakers: Starlee Coleman, The Texas Public Charter School Association; Ariel Johnson, The Illinois Network of Charter Schools/INCS Action; Todd Ziebarth, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

Advocating in Varying Political Contexts
Charter school advocates today are working toward many of the same goals but face unique challenges depending on where they are advocating. This session will explore ways that charter school advocates are pushing for equity and excellence in various contexts, including a red state, a blue state, and at the federal level. Panelists will discuss the key policies they are playing both offense and defense on, highlight strategies for success given political context, and offer recommendations for building strong coalitions.
Speakers: Mark Dixon, A+ Education Partnership; Ariel Johnson, The Illinois Network of Charter Schools/INCS Action; Dana Laurens, Democrats for Education Reform; Patrick C. Sims, PIE Network

Grassroots in a Hostile School Options Environment
Learn how to thrive in a state that is hostile to charters by engaging and empowering the community and meaningfully organizing your schools. By building and tapping existing relationships with your school’s community, including pastors, civic organizations and churches, and the business community, you can build a coalition around common interests. Also, understand how to leverage social media to communicate effectively.
Speaker: Valeria Gurr, American Federation for Children

Leading Through a Crisis: Building Trust, Effective Teams, and Strong Communications
The fall marks the beginning of a new school year in a global pandemic. As a school leader, what should be top of mind as you make decisions? How do you manage the ever-changing climate of learning and the welfare of students and staff in a global pandemic? In this session, you will hear from three leaders on building trust, managing effective teams, keeping student and staff wellness top of mind, and communicating with internal and external audiences to ensure they consider all concerns.
Speakers: Demetrius Ball, Iron Horse Middle School; David McGuire, Tindley Summit Academy; Naomi Shelton, National Charter Collaborative; VaShawn Smith, Grandview Middle School

Moving From Partnership to Co-Authorship with Families
If this past year has taught us anything, it is clearer than ever that we are in this together with our families, and that has allowed me, as a leader, to be creative and have no fear of failure. This past year families have become more than partners in our schools. They’ve become co-authors of our educational journey. This is the new normal for our schools. In this session, we will share our definition of co-authorship, walk through our move from partnership to co-authorship, provide some examples of co-authorship in action, and spend time answering questions.
Speakers: Rhonda "Nikki" Barnes, KIPP MA; Rebecca Hazlett, KIPP MA

Developing School Emergency Operations Plans That Address All Hazards and Threats
As schools increasingly face threats and unique hazards, learn how to shape your school’s Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Supportive Schools and its Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools (REMS) Technical Assistance (TA). We will discuss recommendations in the Guide for Developing High-Quality School Emergency Operations Plans (School Guide), including the creation, revision, and continual enhancement of high-quality school emergency operations plans (EOPs) that address all threats and all hazards and that consider the before, during, and after aspects of potential emergencies a school or school district may face.
Speakers: Alison Curtis, REMS TA Center; Janelle Williams, REMS TA Center


Closing the Education Gap for Middle School Students During COVID-19
For these middle school teachers focused on closing the education gap, COVID-19 was a challenge like none other. With limited budgets and time, they found effective, low-budget strategies: infusing social-emotional learning into lesson plans, shifted programming to increase student engagement, and utilized tools for easy and effective parent communication. All middle school teachers are encouraged to join, as research shows that if the education gap isn't addressed in middle school, it only gets worse in high school.
Speakers: Tercel Harris, Kenilworth Science and Technology; Myranda Moncrief, Kenilworth Science and Technology; Natasha Pittman, Kenilworth Science and Technology

Tangible Equity: An Instructional Framework for Identity, Excellence, and Leadership In and Beyond the Classroom
Brilliance is distributed equally. But too often, opportunity is not. The dual pandemics of COVID-19 pandemic and racial justice have given us the strongest possible case for prioritizing critical thinking instruction, but we still treat critical thinking as a luxury good. Equity requires educators to remove the systemic barriers far too many students face to unleashing their critical thinking potential.
Speaker: Colin Seale, thinkLaw

Engagement to Drive Academic Success for 2nd-5th Graders in a Post Covid World
Ageism existed prior to COVID-19; ensure you enter into the post-pandemic educational landscape rooted in what is age-appropriate for our 2nd-5th graders. Explore how educators can make simple adjustments to their assessment and instructional practices to increase engagement and rapid academic growth, all while ensuring our 8-11-year-olds are engrossed in exploration, questioning, and self-identity work.
Speakers: Nikki Bates, Crossroads Charter Schools; Mildred Pope, Crossroads Charter Schools; Kara Schumacher, Kansas City Public Schools

Leveraging Blended Learning to Create Self-Paced, Mastery-Based Classrooms
In light of the shift to remote learning last spring, teachers are now more aware of the instructional opportunities afforded by blended learning tools and practices. This session will help schools and teachers reimagine how to best leverage blended learning to deliver truly differentiated instruction that emphasizes engagement and competency, as opposed to compliance and completion schooling. Learn from classroom teachers who have reimagined their classrooms and leave with free resources that leverage technology to improve educator effectiveness from the Modern Classroom Project.
Speaker: Kate Gaskill, The Modern Classrooms Project

Making the Ideal, Real: Nine Foundational Principles for High-Quality Early Learning
Participants will hear from early education experts and charter school leaders about how to create high-quality environments for young learners. This session will explore the foundational principles of ideal learning, which are drawn from world-renowned educational approaches such as Montessori, Reggio Emilia, and Waldorf, and informed by developmental science. Participants will learn from school administrators about their experiences in implementing these programs and be introduced to several resources that can help to guide their own decision-making.
Speaker: Catherine Floyd, Trust for Learning

Teaching While Traumatized
The work is in the building - where the kids are. Teachers will all be returning soon. That said, what will be returning with them? They were traumatized too. Depending on where you are, the school may feel like a powder keg of emotional triggers as we all engage in “recovery.” We paid deliberate attention to mental health services for our students. Yet, the teachers are the single most important component of your attempt to return to normal (new normal). Don’t leave them out. We'll show you how.
Speakers: Rictor Craig, Statesmen College Preparatory Academy for Boys PCS; Lamar Davis, Statesmen College Preparatory Academy for Boys PCS; Shawn Hardnett, Statesmen College Preparatory Academy for Boys PCS; Nicole Mayes, Statesmen College Preparatory Academy for Boys PCS

Moving from Pandemic Response to Pandemic Recovery with ELLs
While reliable data on student achievement has been scarce during the pandemic, many studies have found that English language learners faced particularly high distance learning opportunity gaps. In too many cases, many schools and educators have struggled to reach these linguistically and culturally diverse students—and their families. As schools prepare for more—and more equitable—in-person learning in the fall, it’s critical that they center these students’ needs. Join us to hear educators discuss how they focused on ELLs during distance learning and how they plan to support these students in the fall.
Speaker: Conor Williams, The Century Foundation

Connecting During a Pandemic: Mindfulness Practices to Rebuild our Communities and Ourselves
What a difficult year! The pandemic has compounded our experience of stress and isolation. As we move into hybrid learning, fear and anxiety are further enhanced by learning how to be safe in the community. Increasing stress, isolation, and anxiety may result in anger, depression, and externalizing behaviors, as well as low self-esteem and decreased self-confidence. Mindfulness practices offer research-based methods and strategies that can assist both children and adults in transitioning back to the school building and coping with living in an increasingly challenging world.
Speaker: Tawanna Kane, The Inner Resources Project

Re-engaging At-Risk and MIA Students: Serving Students Experiencing Homelessness in the Wake of COVID
The disproportionate impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic made it easier than ever for vulnerable students to slip through the cracks, especially the more than 60,000 students experiencing homelessness who attend charter schools. Join SchoolHouse Connection—a national nonprofit organization working to overcome homelessness through education—for a conversation on how to engage students experiencing homelessness and other at-risk students in the wake of educational disruption. Experienced homeless liaisons will share how they identify and support these students, from enrollment to success, and answer your questions about legal responsibilities, implementation strategies, and specific pandemic-related challenges and strategies.
Speakers: Lorena Galaviz, Learn4Life; Patricia Julianelle, SchoolHouse Connection; Cate Moses, Monte del Sol Charter School

Universal PreK: How to’s for Program Success
With the Biden Administration making a strong policy argument for expanding access to high-quality early learning and parent demand for pre-K rising, it’s clear that pre-K is fast becoming the new kindergarten. How can you be best positioned to create a high-quality program? What are the core pieces of programming that schools should be thinking about?
Speaker: Anne Malone, AppleTree Early Learning Public Charter School

SEL as a Pathway to Equity During COVID-19
Amidst the challenges of the pandemic, how can schools ensure they are supporting all students not only academically but socially and emotionally? As they’ve navigated building closures, reopenings, and hybrid models, schools have demonstrated that through intentional and authentic work around relationships, routines, and reflection, they can foster a safe and supportive environment where all students feel they belong. This session will share learnings and best practices at the intersection of SEL and equity from SEL expert Lindsey Minder (Transforming Education) and school founder Shawn Hardnett (CEO of Statesmen College Prep for Boys).
Speakers: Shawn Hardnett, Statesmen College Preparatory Academy for Boys PCS; Lindsey Minder, Transforming Education; Gabi Netter, NewSchools Venture Fund

The New Normal: How to Get Your School Back on Track (or Even Better)
Schools are facing the difficult task of transitioning back to in-person learning seamlessly and effectively while mitigating learning loss and re-developing a strong, positive school culture. What role does the school leader play in this transition, and how can they effectively utilize their team?
Speakers: Steve Khadam-Hir, BES; Courtney Rodriguez Sales, Bloom Academy Charter School

Innovations to Address Student and Teacher Mental Health
The pandemic has taken a toll on both student and teacher mental health. Surveys show that more than ever, our students are feeling disconnected, and our teachers are feeling burnt out. How can we help? In this session, we will share a variety of different strategies, including our one-of-a-kind TREC (Trauma Resilient Educational Communities) model that will help teachers and administrators assess and meet needs.
Speakers: Michelle Berry, Learn4Life; Craig Beswick, Learning for Life Charter; Taera Childers, Learn4Life

Students Left Behind: How Students with Disabilities Navigated COVID
Students around the globe have experienced significant disruptions to their learning due to the pandemic. However, students with disabilities have been disproportionately impacted due to the challenges of effectively providing critical special education services in virtual or hybrid environments. This session will present findings from an extensive review of the emerging research base to identify what we know, what we don’t know, and what we need to know as we turn our focus from recovery to rebuilding and, ideally, transformation. Our synthesis will provide insight regarding how schools can leverage the research to inform practice.
Speakers: Sumeyra Ekin, Center for Learner Equity; Lauren Morando Rhim, Center for Learner Equity

No Stigma Here! Embracing Culturally Responsive Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)
Learn how our charter district created a mental health program to meet the needs of our students, families, and staff. The process significantly reduced our discipline incidents and encouraged more discussions between the students and families regarding their emotions.
Speakers: Jasmine Boone, YOU therapy & Consultants LLC; Julia Wright, MeyerPark Charter

Teaching Above the Test: The Future of Standardized Testing
Much to do has been made about standardized testing (its usage and its merit). Yet, when mentioning formative assessments, as well as summative assessments, very few, if any, have developed a third way to adequately address the progress of teaching and learning. To date, standardized testing has been one of the only ways to hold an inequitable system accountable for the learning outcomes of its constituents (the students). Used correctly, standardized testing can be the bridge that mends the divide created by the lack of trust parents have in the traditional system of educating students. This session will address the concerns presented by anti-testing advocates as well as provide a pathway forward.
Speakers: Raymond Ankrum, Riverhead Charter School; Dr. Chevella Wilson, Engage, LLC

COVID Learning Loss Prevention: Strategies to Prevent the Slide
In this session, colleagues will discuss the implementation of research-based strategies that will aid school leaders, teachers, students, and families in addressing Covid-19 learning loss. In this unprecedented time, while fighting a Global pandemic, many of the needs of the nation's most vulnerable students have been cast to the side. This session will arm stakeholders with strategies that push the scholastic efforts of High School Students.
Speakers: David McGuire, Tindley Summit Academy; Dr. Chevella Wilson, Engage, LLC

Don't Remediate - Accelerate!
Achievement gaps between our students will be even greater in fall 2021 than ever before: the temptation will be to do more of the same, namely, remediate those students. This means trying to teach them what they didn't learn last year or even years ago. This simply doesn't work - and there is a better, although initially more challenging, way to go: working to create just-in-time access to grade-level materials. We will present both research and practical know-how on this critically important topic. We will review research on summer learning opportunities, tutoring, and the use of stimulus funding.
Speakers: David Steiner, Johns Hopkins Institute for Education Policy, Johns Hopkins University; Roblin Webb, Freedom Preparatory Academy; Dan Weisberg, TNTP

Google's Computer Science K-12 Initiatives - What We Do and Why We Do It
More than 65% of young people will work in jobs that don’t exist yet—building new technology, advancing artificial intelligence, and designing better ways to analyze data. To succeed in careers across industries, all students need access to a solid foundation in computer science skills and experience using technology today. Google has created free tools, including curriculum, coding projects, activities, and instructional videos any educator can use to help students build critical skills and confidence. Join us to hear about the latest work in our mission of giving every student the chance to explore, advance, and succeed in computer science.
Speakers: Jennifer Vaden Barth, Google; Cass Fernandes, Google; Tiffany Walter, Google

Google's Applied Digital Skills - Building Career Readiness and Addressing Equity Gaps
2020 highlighted the need for digital skills competency and the growing digital divide among underrepresented groups. In this session, we will discuss how Applied Digital Skills enhanced this free online curriculum to deliver digital skills and career readiness lessons while simultaneously driving efforts to address Equity Gaps for Black communities.
Speakers: Jennifer Vaden Barth, Google; Torie Bates, Google

Activism in the Classroom
In these ongoing times of crisis, students are increasingly acting as agents of social change. How can charter schools leverage their unique institutional resources to best support student activism? How can curriculum, assignments, and education as a whole become part of the struggle for social justice? Hear directly from students on the issues that matter most to them and ways they see to connect student activism with what they're learning in the classroom.
Speaker: Artemisio Romero y Carver, Youth United For Climate Crisis Action (YUCCA)

Centering Relationships: A Foundation for Student Learning and Emotional Well-being
As students and educators prepare for the upcoming school this next year, it is more important than ever to build on the resilience that they’ve shown in the face of overlapping trauma events this past year by focusing on both emotional well-being and academic learning. Teachers can play an important role by building intentional and meaningful connections with their students that make them feel seen, heard, and safe. In this session, educators will discuss how centering relationships with students can promote both well-being and student learning.
Speakers: Denise Forte, interim CEO, Education Trust, Dr. Stacy Perez, Principal, Classical Academy High School, Personalized Learning Campus; Daren Dickson, Chief Culture Officer, Valor



Lowering Barriers to Increase Innovation: How We Can Cultivate a Diverse K-12 Workforce
Innovative ideas come from everywhere. When entire groups of potential educators face outsized hurdles to accessing a career in education, we miss out on their brilliance. Leaders from school- and entrepreneur-support organizations will discuss how we can create new pathways and systems to support educators of color earlier in their careers so that all students can benefit from their innovation and unique talents.
Speakers: Tiffany Thompson, Echoing Green; Aaron Walker, Camelback Ventures; Melinda Wright, Walton Family Foundation

Teacher 2.0: The Post-Pandemic Teaching World
Now that every teacher has gained exposure to the good, bad, and ugly of teaching online, the conversation about the future of teaching and learning reaches a new depth. This panel of experts in online, blended, and hybrid learning will talk about how to take the best of the new skills educators have gained to leverage the best that technology offers to personalize learning for each student.
Speakers: Anna Battle, ASU Prep; Jill Rogier, ASU Prep; Julie Young, ASU Preparatory Academy Digital

Meeting the Moment: Learning Pods, Hubs, & Micro-Schools Can Help Charter Schools Build Back Better
Families and communities pioneered ways to meet the unprecedented needs of the moment with on-demand support for students beyond the walls of a traditional classroom. From a homeschool coop to an online learning platform with guided assistance, leaders will share the inventive approaches that helped students through the pandemic. Leaders will discuss how innovations can continue post-pandemic as CMOs and schools look for ways to meet recovery needs.
Speakers: Bernita Bradley, ENGAGE Detroit; Pamela Goynes-Brown, City of North Las Vegas; Don Soifer, Nevada Action for School Options; Robin Lake, Director of the Center on Reinventing Public Education (CRPE) & Stacey Childress, NewSchools Venture Fund

Help is Here: Putting COVID-Relief Funds to Work
The much-awaited, much-needed government relief package for education is here. These funds are reimbursable - it's crucial you have a good spending plan in place. In this session, we will review the ESSER Programs, discuss requirements, state guidelines, and provide strategic guidance. Learn about the three areas where you absolutely should spend and one key mistake to avoid. A former charter leader herself, Tricia Blum supports charter schools in strategic decisions about business, financial, and operational guidance.
Speaker: Tricia Blum, Charter School Capital

Equity and Opportunity: Developing Students for the Future of Work
Purdue launched the Purdue Polytechnic High School in 2017 with the goal of increasing the number of underrepresented students from Indiana who could gain admission. The PPHS team understood that to change outcomes and truly prepare students for the future of work, we must innovate and fundamentally redesign high school. This presentation will cover the school model, outcomes and lessons learned and offer ample opportunity for Q&A. Any campus administrators will benefit from learning more and being challenged to examine their connection with K-12.
Speakers: Scott Bess, Polytechnic High School; Jamie Jutila, Walton Family Foundation; Keeanna Warren, Purdue Polytechnic High School

The Next Education Workforce: Redesigning the One-Teacher-One-Classroom Model of Schooling
What if we don't have a teacher shortage problem but instead a workforce design problem? Learn how Arizona State University and a broad group of partners are challenging long-held assumptions in education by building teams of educators with distributed expertise to deliver on the promise of deeper and personalized learning for all students. Learn how we can empower educators with opportunities for role-based specialization and advancement.
Speakers: Brent Maddin, ASU's Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College; Claudia Mendoza, ASU Preparatory Academy - Polytechnic Elementary; Natalie Nailor, ASU's Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College

Kairos Academies: Playing with Time, Ed Tech and Data to Create Personalized Learning
In this session, you’ll learn how Kairos uses publicly accessible tools and automation to facilitate flexible, self-directed student schedules. We’ll also review how to build a simple data analytics tool to help personalize each child’s experience based on their needs and strengths. We'll discuss how remote learning actually increases opportunities for schools to differentiate learning and how leaders and operation teams can adopt elements of our approach to reimagine the student experience. If we don’t customize student courses, material, and pace, then we'll leave struggling students behind and compound past inequities.
Speaker: Gavin Schiffres, Kairos Academies

Easiest Way to Raise Money - (Re)Financing Your School
Schools are saving hundreds of thousands of dollars each year by refinancing their loans. It’s more certain than fundraising. Learn how one school found $300,000 each year by refinancing.
Speakers: Elise Balboni, Enterprise Community Loan Fund; Keith Donahue, Sage International

The Future of Informal Learning
We are now experiencing the democratization of learning. Curious learners can consume information, learn new skills and have direct access to experts on an endless array of topics. The world around us is changing rapidly, and we will all need to be lifelong learners. We must prepare students for a world in which grades and degrees mean less than proficiency and competencies. Companies are already requiring that people have functional expertise in addition to knowledge and trades. We are just beginning to see the blending of traditional education and just-in-time learning with fewer gatekeepers. Welcome to the world of nano-credentials and a learning experience that offers different things to different people at different stages in their lives. Learn about new platforms and tools that can be shared with young learners to spark intellectual curiosity.
Speaker: Heather Hiles, Board Member, Udemy, Founder of Pathbrite

See something you're interested in? Register today!