A team from the Battelle for Kids family attended the National School Board Association Annual Conference in Philadelphia, and we each walked away with different moments, words, and observations that inspired us, surprised us, reaffirmed our passion, or in some other way, stuck with us. Here are a few of those takeaways.
Colon Lewis, EdD
Senior Director, Improvement and Impact
Paraphrasing keynote speaker Sir Ken Robinson: “There’s a difference between learning, education, and school. A school is a system of education. Education is a formal approach to learning. Learning is driven by our curiosity. Kids naturally love learning. We don’t need to fix kids; we need to fix how we do school.”
Chief of Staff
Listening to Frank Pugh, President of the National School Boards Association, tell the story of his advocacy to transform the composition of his own school board to achieve diversity and equity, even though he lost his seat on the Sonoma County School Board in the process. “Be the catalysts for change, not for our future and our successes, but for our children and their future.”
Berhl Robertson Jr., EdD
Chief Operating Officer
Johnny Taylor, President and CEO for the Society for Human Resource Management described the skills required for our current era of talent evolution: creativity, agility, and adaptability. These are true 21st century skills that students need to be developing in schools today.
Karen Garza, PhD
President and CEO
Sir Ken Robinson: “There is no more critical time in education. We must create conditions where natural human learning is encouraged to thrive.”
CEO, EdLeader 21, a network of Battelle for Kids
I felt reinvigorated while listening to Dave Sovine (Superintendent, Frederick County Public Schools, VA) talk about the results they’ve experienced with student-led assessments. Specifically, he said test scores have “skyrocketed” because students are now engaged.
Director, Marketing and Communications
While most of the presenters, speakers, and exhibitors passionately shared our belief that school systems are in need of transformation—and that this transformation should include getting rid of the industrial approach to schools—there were still some who were advocating for solutions, products, and policies that clearly seemed stuck in the 1900s.
Shannon King, PhD
Chief Innovation Officer
“Wherever there are human beings, there are deep reserves of human potential, and it is our job as educators to help find and cultivate that potential. The heart of education is the relationship between the student and the teacher—everything else is peripheral.” (This is paraphrased from Sir Ken Robinson’s opening keynote speech, but I also heard it repeated in different ways by different people throughout the event.)
Did you attend NSBA? What were your takeaways?
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