Ignite 14 Conference

New Strategic Plan Launched at Ignite ’14

NASSP has launched a new strategic plan for 2014–2016, and the Ignite ’14 conference was our first opportunity to present the plan to NASSP members. Check out the video below to learn about our new mission and vision statement and six organizational goals: (more…)

Legal Issues Impacting Principals

Guest post by David S. Ellena, principal of Tomahawk Creek Middle School in Chesterfield, VA

During the session on “Legal Issues that Will Impact Principals,” Dr. Robert S. McCord touched on several major issues that are working their way through the courts. Here is a summary of some of the major points he discussed: (more…)

Take the Challenge

The questions came in fast and furious on Twitter during the conversation between Carol Dweck, author of Mindset and the Lewis and Virginia Eaton professor of psychology at Stanford University, and Daniel Wong, author of The Happy Student: 5 Steps to Academic Fulfillment and Success, during the opening Thought Leader session at Ignite ’14.

Former National Principals of the Year Laurie Baron, superintendent of Evergreen School District in Montana, and Trevor Greene, professional development specialist for the Association of Washington School Principals, facilitated the discussion on stage and on Twitter. The results of this engaging live/virtual discussion are presented below. (more…)

A Snowy Start to a Great First Day

Guest post by Christine Handy-Collins, principal of Gaithersburg High School

Yesterday I woke up to a wintery mix of snow in Dallas, Texas. Unbelievable…and the snow in Texas falls differently. It falls in slow motion, like a movie scene. It doesn’t look real, is soft and fluffy, and certainly not the kind you can make a snowman with. While I didn’t bring boots, I do have my hat, gloves, and scarf. The good thing is…the conference is in the hotel and I do not have to go outside for purposes other than my curiosity of this thing called SNOW in TEXAS. (more…)

School Showcase Models Community Values

The schools who presented in the school showcase at NASSP’s Ignite ’14 brought a little piece of themselves to share with their colleagues. I was fortunate enough to attend three of the packed sessions and came away having experienced a bit of what happens in each school.

It may not be common for professional development sessions to begin with singing, but maybe it should be. The native song that started the session with the Native American Community Academy (NACA) in Albuquerque, NM, established the reverence for community, identity, respect, and balance that characterizes the school and its leaders. (more…)

Ready to Ignite!

Reposted from Tim Dawkins’ (@Tim_Dawks) Let Learning Lead blog

It’s well-known throughout the world of social media that since WiFi has been made available on airplanes, one of the first things many people do once they’ve been cleared to access it is to tell everyone that they are “Tweeting from an airplane” or “Facebook-chatting from an airplane” or “Taking pictures of the beautiful sunset/sunrise from 30,000 feet and sharing it with you all from an airplane” before they do anything else. (more…)

Using Data to Create a Culture of Student Accountability

Guest post by David S. Ellena, principal of Tomahawk Creek Middle School in Chesterfield, VA

Tefft Middle School has 835 students in grades seven and eight. They have a highly diverse student body, yet have achieved remarkable results on state standardized testing. Lavonne Smiley and her staff attribute these results to the culture of transparency with data and accountability from all stakeholders. Here are some things that they do to create a culture of success. (more…)

Take Advantage of Extended Exhibit Hall Hours

With so many great NASSP members and attendees taking time out of their busy schedules to make it to our conference every year, we always try to identify ways we can continue to make these three days of learning better and better for all those who attend.

During last year’s conference, we heard from some attendees that they didn’t have as much time as they would have liked to devote to the exhibit hall, with all the concurrent sessions and other learning opportunities filling their schedules. (more…)

And We’re Off…Breaking Ranks School Showcase Now Underway

It’s not a complicated formula: Identify a set of schools that have found ways to overcome challenges we all face. Pull those leadership teams together into the same space for a day. Then let the knowledge and ideas flow. That simplicity is at the heart of the Breaking Ranks School Showcase, which kicked off the first full day of learning at Ignite ’14.

I have had the pleasure of attending many of these showcases over the years—with all kinds of schools from all across the country—and two truths become clearer with each showcase:

  1. The themes are remarkably consistent. No matter the school’s demographics or its starting point, the path to success was paved through collaboration; personalization; and aligned and meaningful curriculum, instruction, and assessment. There is always a realization as well that the team can’t “work on the work” of academics until the team has established a culture in which every student feels safe, known, and valued.
  2. No two schools execute on those themes the same way. Nor should they. Each school has its own character, which an effective improvement program fosters rather than supplants. That’s why we don’t call the Breaking Ranks Framework for School Improvement a school reform program. It’s not a set of prescriptive steps designed to make one school replicate another. Instead, it guides leadership teams through their own journeys of discovery.

And if energy is any indication, this year’s showcase promises to be the best yet. We hope you’ll share your discoveries on this blog and on our other social media backchannels.

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.