By Jennifer Wohlleb
Attendees at KSBA’s annual Winter Symposium, Nov. 30-Dec. 1 in Lexington, will be welcomed to the event in a new way.
“We have added a new feature to our event this year – a Welcome Session, which will provide a lot of information that will help those who haven’t gone to very many of our conferences get the most out of the experience,” said Kerri Schelling, KSBA’s director of Board Team Development. “It also will be a good opportunity for our veteran members to meet the new board members from across the state, get to know them and share some of their wisdom.”
Schelling said the Welcome Session will include information about school board member training requirements, KSBA’s Academy of Studies to help meet those requirements, and information about the association. The session will include tabletop discussions and introductions.
“The goal is to help all of our board members, whether they are new or veteran, to get to know each other, get comfortable, remember what we’re all here to do and how to get the best experience,” she said. “We want to start the conference that way.”
This year’s keynote speakers range from fun and inspirational to informational.
Dr. Brooks Coleman, Jr., a Georgia state representative, will kick off the symposium.
“Our Friday keynote has spoken to a lot of school boards associations and he is very easy to listen to, a great storyteller, who has received rave reviews from everyone I talked to who has heard him,” Schelling said. “I think it will be a fun and interesting session.”
Attendees also will be able to return to their districts with a better understanding of the issue of charter schools. Dr. David Miron, a professor at Western Michigan University, will arm board members with facts.
“It’s a fairly heavy topic, but our goal is to make sure that every school board member and superintendent have the opportunity to learn the facts and dispel the myths so they can make informed decisions,” Schelling said. “We know there will be bills about charter schools and we don’t want board members to ever be reactionary based on an emotional response. We really want them to be able to make that decision for themselves, based on the evidence, without the spin, and do what they think is right.”
In addition to these presentations, there will be more than 21 workshops for board members to chose from.
“There really is something for everyone,” Schelling said. “Every workshop is either a required course or required topic in the Academy of Studies. We always have a lot with some electives mixed in, but it just so happened that every session meets a specific requirement, so it will be a great opportunity for anyone looking to advance in the Academy.”
Registration forms for the symposium have been mailed. For more information or to register click here.