Check This Out Before Planning Your Next Building

Posted by Scott Barron on Mar 21, 2017 9:53:10 AM

Prakash Nair is a guru of 21st century school design. He's written two books that expound on his philosophy and share the process used by Fielding Nair (FNI) to fashion cost-effective renovations of current buildings and to create remarkably inspiring new facilities. The latest one is, Blueprint for Tomorrow: Redesigning Schools for Student-Centered Learning.

Read this book before you plan your next building!

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Topics: School Innovation, School Design

March Madness is Driving Your School Crazy

Posted by Scott Barron on Mar 19, 2017 11:27:40 PM

March is a frenetic time of year for educators, and I'm not just talking about college basketball's version of March Madness™ with Cinderella upset stories and incessant variations of the tune, "One Shining Moment."  Picking the winners on your Tournament Challenge bracket isn't the real madness that is driving your school crazy. It's far worse than that!

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Topics: School Boards, Learning, Board Assessment, Engagement

Planning a Meaningful Board Retreat

Posted by Scott Barron on Feb 13, 2017 1:37:17 PM

Consider the following statement when thinking about your next board retreat:

"If my school board would _______ we would be 100% more effective.”

The purpose of asking the board to set apart time for a retreat is to reset. It’s a time where the board is setting aside time to rejuvenate and set clear objectives. You need to make sure you’re pursuing a board retreat plan that will allow you to set goals for the whole organization as well as to collect feedback on existing objectives.

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Topics: School Boards, Learning, Board Assessment, Engagement

Back to the Future of American Education: Pluralism

Posted by Scott Barron on Feb 7, 2017 11:03:30 AM

The future of American education is will very likely involve a return to its roots: A diverse or plural school system. Did you know that the United States had pluralistic school systems in its first 100 years? 

If you are an education leader, teacher, school board member, legislator, parent, or care at all about schools, I've recently discovered a book that you MUST read. It's Dr. Ashley Berner's book: No One Way to School: Pluralism and American Public Education. Dr. Berner is Deputy Director of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Education Policy and is an historian by training.

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Topics: School Growth, School Policy

Have You Heard About the World Series of Entrepreneurship?

Posted by Scott Barron on Jan 24, 2017 10:15:00 AM

Mark Greenberg is one of the chief architects of the remarkable entrepreneurship program at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia, PA. The Sands Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership was established through an innovative vision that recognizes
the need for schools to produce job creators--not just job-appliers. Very few schools have the combination of curriculum, instruction, and culture that makes this such a successful model for others to emulate. 

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Topics: School Innovation

Top 10 Marketing Strategies: #2 Value Proposition

Posted by Scott Barron on Jan 13, 2017 7:10:48 AM

Why should parents want their children to attend your school? What is your compelling value proposition? 

That's the challenge EVERY school leadership has to solve: Deeply understanding the needs and wants of their target market of families and then creating a combination of services and experiences that progressively build engagement. 

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Topics: Innovation Planning, Marketing

NY Edtech Week and the Benefits of Experience

Posted by Scott Barron on Dec 21, 2016 1:00:00 PM

Today I attended NY Edtech Week held at NYU in the heart of Lower Manhattan. Despite being scheduled so close to Christmas, the turnout was large with a high degree of engagement. Through the various "Shark Tank" presentations before potential investors and peers, coupled with several Think Tank sessions that featured some interesting dialogue, this event provided insight into important trends of how technology is and isn't impacting education. 

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Topics: Learning, Events

Mississippi Superintendent Fired Because He Didn't Apply the First Law of the Grapevine

Posted by Scott Barron on Dec 6, 2016 8:48:36 AM


Last Friday (Dec. 3, 2016) In Greenville, Mississippi, the superintendent was fired. The problems began with how he managed communication regarding a teacher who was accused of abusing a student. Because of a lack of trust and effective leadership habits, the poor relationship between the board and the superintendent has created a mess!

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Topics: Communication, School Boards, Laws of the Grapevine

Top 10 Marketing Strategies: #1 Target Market

Posted by Scott Barron on Dec 1, 2016 12:51:55 PM

The first strategy in improving the marketing results for your school is defining and understanding your target markets. (Yes, you have more than one) Market knowledge and research is essential for any school that wants to grow.

Click Here to view the webinar series on the Top 10 Marketing Strategies. Your three target markets in order of priority are:

1. Faculty (i.e., All employees of the school)
2. Families (Parents, students, grandparents, etc.)
3. Funders (Individual, corporate, government, foundation, etc.) 

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Topics: Marketing

Get Personal to Raise More Money

Posted by Scott Barron on Nov 25, 2016 10:30:12 AM

Most of the donations to your school will be made because someone asked for them, and if you get personal with your fundraising messages you will raise more money. Schools who customize their communications are more likely to:

  1. Retain donors for longer periods of time
  2. Generate more loyalty
  3. Create higher levels of donor satisfaction. 
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Topics: Fundraising, Engagement

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