Ignite '16 Conference

Your Ignite ‘16 To-Do List

It’s time to connect, innovate, and thrive at Ignite ’16! We’re looking forward to seeing you and other school leaders in Orlando this week at the only professional development event devoted exclusively to the needs of middle level and high school administrators.

To ensure that you take full advantage of the networks, education, and technology available at Ignite, check these items off your Ignite ’16 to-do list.

Bring Your Confirmation Email. If you haven’t already, you will receive a confirmation email a few days prior to the conference. (more…)

Climate, Culture, and the Urban Assistant Principal

Guest post by Baruti K. Kafele

Over the years, I have found the role of the urban assistant principal to be the most intriguing role in schools. In my role as a consultant, I see this role being played out so differently in so many schools—ranging from school disciplinarian to instructional leadership, and everything in between.

I often reflect back on my own tenure as an urban middle school assistant principal, when my responsibilities were relegated to school disciplinarian, cafeteria duty, bus duty, hall monitor, and staff supply inventory clerk. (more…)

I Would Never Want Your Job

Guest post by Jimmy Casas

In the past I have been a part of several conversations with teachers, students, parents, principals, and aspiring administrators about the challenges that come with being a building principal. The conversation caused me to reflect on the work we do on a daily basis as building leaders and to determine what is it exactly that causes others to say, “I would never want your job.”

The truth is I am worried about the long-term impact of potential principal candidates because of the perception that is often associated with the work that we do. (more…)

Building Leadership Skills for Administrators Through ‘Manufactured’ Experience

Guest post by Ken Spero

There is a silent crisis undermining school reform. The data below paint a stark picture of the challenge facing the education space today. In any major organizational change effort, especially in a context as complex as the education system, leadership is a key ingredient to success.

Of course “leadership” can be defined in many different ways, and it is clear that different forms of leadership are required for different situations. However, the ability to communicate, coordinate, and make decisions is key under any circumstance. What makes the education leadership job so challenging is that those abilities are rife with “painful” trade-offs that make them difficult to do under the best of circumstances. (more…)

School Leaders Reflect on the Ignite Conference

Last year, we asked attendees why they keep coming back to the Ignite conference. Some of their reasons included the cutting-edge content, gaining new ideas, connecting with peers who are experiencing similar circumstances, and the conversations that happen in the halls and after sessions.

Watch this video to hear for yourself why Ignite is so valuable—and see if you’re one of the featured attendees! (more…)

Attend Ignite and Spark Your Digital Discoveries

Let’s say this summer you’ve made a commitment to consider new opportunities to increase student engagement and lower disciplinary incidents. Or maybe you’ve pledged to develop a program that empowers students to be the navigators of their learning destinies. Your solutions may lie in adopting an innovative digital initiative—a program that meets students, so often referred to as today’s digital natives, where they are.

For inspiration, come to Ignite ’16 in Orlando, FL, and learn from NASSP’s 2016 Digital Principal Award winners. (Nominations and applications are available now for the 2016 Digital Principals program.) Taking a page from the experience of NASSP’s 2015 Digital Principals—John Bernia, James Richardson, and Bill Ziegler—who presented an Ignite ’15 panel discussion, technological innovation in schools can be the key to achieving these goals.

John Bernia (@MrBernia) served on a committee in his Oakland Township, MI, district to create a Bring Your Own Device policy. This principal of Oakview Middle School was so committed to classroom technology integration that he freed up classroom teachers by using substitutes in order to have a series of daytime staff meetings called “The Big Think.” (more…)

Ignite ’16 Thought Leaders to Bring Energy, Insight

The keynote speakers at next year’s Ignite ’16 conference will open and close the conference with unique perspectives and a fresh approach to helping school leaders be their very best.

Sekou Andrews will kick off the conference with his cutting-edge fusion of inspirational speaking and spoken word poetry. Through his powerful presentations, Sekou helps organizations find their voice and tell their most powerful stories. His blend of spoken word, storytelling, theater, and comedy has been enjoyed by celebrities, national media outlets, and leading companies.

Marc Patrick from Nike was thoroughly impressed by Sekou’s presentation: “I’ve never heard an audience be as quiet and attentive as when Sekou is speaking. He absolutely commands respect of the room. He gets everybody’s attention, and in this particular project, he certainly did that. You could hear a needle drop when he’s speaking and everybody just wants to see what he’s going to do next.” (more…)

In Case You Missed It—Summer PD Opportunities

Forget the summer reading list. Start making your summer “watch” list. The NASSP archives offer some insightful webinars for your professional development. Take advantage of the typically less stressful days of summer and consider these five webinars on pressing education topics.

Fresh on the heels of state-mandated testing of your students’ proficiency with state standards, you may wish to listen in on Rick Wormeli’s “Standards-Based Assessment and Grading.” An interactive webinar from March 25, 2014, Wormeli addresses what principals need to know and communicate to teachers in the new standards-based environment.

Common Core
For those struggling with developing and implementing a schoolwide literacy initiative, “Literacy Lessons Learned,” hosted by Mel Riddile, associate director of high school services for NASSP, offers insights from four practicing school leaders. (more…)

Reflect on #NASSP15 (and 5 Reasons to Plan Now for Ignite ’16)

Ignite ’16—Are you ready? February 2016 in Orlando, FL, might seem like a much-too-distant vision. But now is a good time to reflect on the experiences of Ignite ’15 to get the financial or professional support you need to assure your place at NASSP’s annual national conference, a no-regrets investment in the future of your students and your school.

Whether you were there in person or in spirit, Ignite ’15 offers some persuasive reminders about why you should make Ignite ’16 a “must” on your to-do list for the 2015–2016 academic year. Check out a Storify recap of Ignite ’15 (#NASSP15) now to revisit the event that many consider a professional game-changer. Consider these five reasons to get Ignite ’16 on your radar:

  1. Connect

Many school leaders celebrate Ignite for its ability to enable them to build and reinforce that all-important professional learning network (PLN). (more…)

Tips on Using the Ignite ’14 Mobile App

Make sure to take advantage of all of the Ignite ’14 app features while attending the conference.

Use the schedule and presenter icons on the app home screen to explore the learning opportunities available and find out more about the schools and speakers presenting.

Take note of these app features in each specific session screen:

  • The pencil icon will allow you to take notes on that specific session. Notes taken for all sessions will be saved together under “My Notes” in the Event Extras list, which can be found by clicking the arrow on the top left of the screen while on the app homepage.
  • If you tap the “Add to Schedule” option, that session will be added to your calendar, which can be accessed by clicking “My Schedule” in the Events Extra list. Please note that there is also an option to “bookmark” a session by clicking on the bookmark icon. This will NOT add the session to your schedule, but will save all your bookmarked sessions together under the “Bookmarked Activities” tab in the schedule icon.
  • The alarm clock icon allows you to set a reminder for that specific session
  • The camera icon allows you to take a photo of the session, which can be saved to that session, allowing all other app users to see.
  • Notice the “Tap here to take a survey for this event” option. This will allow you to give your feedback on a session through 10 short questions.

The Exhibitors icon will take you to a list of the many exhibitors, their booth numbers, and a floor plan. You will be able to view contact information for the exhibitors and search exhibitors by category.

Make sure to use the Conference Blog icon to follow along with the many updates that NASSP staff members and others will be posting throughout the whole conference.

The Twitter icon will take you to a #nassp14 streaming page so you can see what all attendees are tweeting about. Make sure to join in on the conversation!

The My Connections icon is a way for you to connect with other conference attendees. When you tap on the icon, you will get prompted to add your name, contact information, title, organization, and a photo of yourself. You can add as little or as much personal information as you would like. If you want your profile to be private, meaning that another attendee would have to request to connect with you and you would have to approve that request to see any information you’ve shared, click the “set my profile to private.” Leave that unchecked if you want your profile to be public so that all attendees can see it.

In the attendee list, attendees who have set their profiles to public will have “contact requested” under their name. To request to connect with a certain attendee, whether they are private or public, tap on their name, and then the small head icon. They will have to confirm your request before you can see their information if they are private.

To make any changes to your attendee profile after the initial sign up process, tap the arrow on the top left corner when on the app home screen. That will direct you to the Event Extras side menu. From there, tap “Return to Event Directory” which is at the very top.

When in the event directory, tap the box on the top left corner with two circles. Then go into your profile settings too add information, or change the privacy settings. To go back to the app home screen, click on the Ignite 2014 box.

The planning guide icon will give you information on how to use the interactive PDF of the planning guide. The interactive planning guide only works on the web version of this app or on a Microsoft Surface tablet because of Adobe restrictions.

The search function allows you to search for any speaker or school to see what sessions they are involved with or to search for a topic such as “common core” to see all common core related sessions.

Use the QR Scanner to scan various QR codes throughout the conference.

Under the Conference Maps icon, you will find maps for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd floors of the conference center, as well as the 2nd, 4th, and 37th floors of the hotel, where conference activities are taking place.

Use the Discover Dallas and Dallas Map icons to familiarize yourself with the city and learn more about nearby attractions.
Don’t miss the Event Extras option menu, which can be found by clicking on the left arrow at the top of the Event Guide home screen.

The Event Compass will show you a list of sessions about to begin.

My Schedule will show your calendar and any sessions you have added to it.

The Notifications tab will display any notifications NASSP has sent out, including updates about events or room changes.
My Contacts will save any people you have connected with through My Connections on the app home screen.

My Notes will display all the notes you have taken in specific sessions.

For problems using this mobile app, you can contact Crowd Compass support at 888-889-3069, option 1 or email support@crowdcompass.com.