School administrators conference kicks off Wednesday

This week marks the end of the summer vacation for hundreds of Idaho school administrators.

Even though school doesn’t start for a few weeks yet, hundreds of superintendents, principals, special education directors and assistant principals are participating in the Idaho Association of School Administrators summer leadership conference.

The three-day event kicks off Wednesday at the Boise Centre.

Through a series of keynote speakers and workshop programs, the IASA conference is designed to provide training for its members and networking opportunities.

Rob Winslow
Rob Winslow

Two highlights of this year’s conference are expected to be breakout policy sessions featuring legislators and training programs devoted to implementing new laws and policy.

“They’ll be able to ask questions from the floor, and we’re trying to get where our members can learn things directly (from policy makers) on legislative issues,” IASA Executive Director Rob Winslow said.

The state’s calendar is set up so that nearly all of the new laws passed during the 2016 legislative session take affect this month —mere weeks before the start of the upcoming school year.

To that end, the conference offers administrators the chance to hone implementation strategies on major new policy directives regarding literacy programs, college and career counseling and mastery-based education.

Winslow said many administrators will benefit from dissecting new academic programs as they learn from policymakers themselves and bounce ideas off their colleagues.

“Part of it, honestly, is the whole energy in bringing everyone together (around education issues),” Winslow said. “There are districts that bring their whole administrative team.”

Officials from the State Board of Education and the State Department of Education are also among those scheduled to speak or lead training events this week. Superintendent of Public Instruction Sherri Ybarra has told organizers she will be unable to attend, but she prepared a video presentation that will be screened for attendees.

On Thursday, IASA officials will recognize Idaho’s top principals, special educators and the group’s superintendent of the year during an awards luncheon.

Disclosure: Idaho Education News is a sponsor of the convention.

IASA partial schedule (the full convention schedule is available online):

Wednesday

  • 7:30 a.m.: Registration opens.
  • 8:30 a.m.: Keynote speech, John Draper.
  • 10:30 – 11:45 a.m.: Workshops.
  • 1:30 p.m.: IHSAA annual meeting.
  • 1:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.: Workshops.

Thursday

  • 8:30 – 9:30 a.m.: Keynote, Eric Sheninger.
  • 9:45- 11:45 a.m.: Workshops.
  • 12:00 – 1:30 p.m.: Awards luncheon.
  • 2:15 – 3:15 p.m.: Workshops.

Friday

  • 8:00 a.m.: Educator rallies.
  • 9:45 a.m.: Closing session.