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Faculty and Staff Growth Newsletter

October 2022 Faculty and Staff Growth Newsletter

In this month’s newsletter, find out more about building character through youth sports and collecting relationship data to help students. Also check out part two of our faculty and staff’s professional growth from the summer!  

12th Grade Dean Eric Hallet works with students

Interesting Recent Articles

Linda Flanagan, “Do Youth Sports Really Build Character? What Kids Gain from Sports Depends on Adults,” Mind/Shift 

Coaches determine in so many ways whether playing a sport contributes to students’ moral and ethical development.  

If the coach is fair and respectful to the team and referees; if she helps kids empathize with players on both teams; if she enables kids to handle loss, and to be grateful, and to respect her opponents, then yes—sports can build character. In short: it all depends. 

Julia Freeland Fisher, “What Schools Miss When They’re Missing Relationship Data,” EdSurge 

Entrepreneurial groups, including the Complex Data Collective and Visible Networks Lab, are coming up with ways to make dynamic social connections visible electronically— thus helping track how students are doing in their relationships.  

Better tools for assessing and maintaining connectedness offer myriad upsides when it comes to the complex challenges schools are facing this year. First, as researchers like VNL’s Danielle Varda have long documented, connectedness and mental health are deeply intertwined. Given concerns about students’ mental health are top of mind among district leaders, schools would be wise to not just invest in interventions, but data focused on social connectedness. 

Hayley Hardison, “10 Buzzwords Educators Never Want to Hear Again,” Education Week 

Hundreds of educators offered up vocabulary that might feel past its prime right now. 

“Learning loss” because it ignores the trauma and stress kids have experienced in order to quickly cram information into kids’ heads instead of meeting kids where they are and moving them forward. 

Upcoming In-Person Conference

The National Association of Independent Schools Annual Conference is being held in person in February for the first time in three years, in Las Vegas. Registration opens November 1, and the conference offers a huge array of workshops on all aspects of independent schools. 

Summer Faculty and Staff Professional Growth, Part 2

Here is the second half of faculty and staff professional growth from the summer. Also, if you did summer professional growth that we’ve missed listing, please get in touch with Reid Fritz.  

  • English teacher Emily Balliet, Head Librarian Meryl Eldridge, and history teacher Abel Fuentes made medieval pocketbooks with artist and rare books librarian Nicholas Yeager. The workshop was jointly organized by the Library and History Department and took place in Prep’s Makerspace. 
  • 11th Grade Dean Megan Bowman and 12th Grade Dean Eric Hallett went to the Stanley H. King Summer Institute in Colorado Springs. They presented on the counseling and listening techniques from the institute during Prep’s opening meetings in August.  
  • Physical education teacher and head girls soccer coach Esteban Chavez attended the WYN Institute for Contemporary Leadership program, developed by Anacapa Consulting Group
  • Sarah Cooper, Associate Head of School, took part in Global Online Academy’s self-paced course Competency-Based Learning: From Time-Based to Performance-Based
  • Global Studies Coordinator Ingrid Herskind attended The Future of Democracy seminar hosted by Harvard University's Global Studies Outreach and the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies. 
  • Two department chairs joined California Teacher Development Collaborative for workshops. Physical Education Department Chair Julie Mejia participated in Mastering Group Facilitation, hosted by Flintridge Prep, and Visual Arts Department Chair Ricardo Rodríguez participated in the CATDC’s Department Chairs Institute