Spring 2013 Newsletter

Issue Date: April 30, 2013

Educational Leadership Takes Many Forms
Daryl Chesley, President


Educational leadership takes many forms - into today's interrelated society, each of us has the responsibility to ensure we are maintaining and practicing current best practice.  To paraphrase Covey: What are you doing to keep your sword sharp?  How are you guaranteeing that your students are receiving a quality education?


Very recently, I had the opportunity to attend the national ASCD conference in Chicago.  It is an outstanding conference, and I encourage each of you to attend.  Of the plethora of notable keynote speakers, I was struck by Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Conner's words of advice to encourage academic success.  She encourages students to "read fast and write well".



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All Kinds of Connections

Laurie McCullough, Interim Executive Director

What does it mean to be a modern learner?  VASCD is exploring this question in 2013, culminating with our annual conference in Williamsburg in early December. Our conference theme, @modernlearners, brings to mind images of students accessing information and connecting with others digitally from their classrooms (or from anywhere). We are reminded of the importance of teaching students to analyze and evaluate content when it comes not from one textbook and one teacher, but rather from that information fire hose, the internet.  Today's teachers are helping students harness and focus the power of the devices they carry in their backpacks and pockets, so that they can learn what they need to know efficiently- any time and anywhere. 


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The Flipped Classroom
Kristin Britt

Kristin Britt, who teaches Science at West Point Middle School, created this Vodcast exploring  Flipped Classrooms.  Spend ten minutes discovering what a flipped classroom is and is not and how to begin developing Flipped Classrooms for our modern learners. 

The Flipped Classroom 

Advice from a Modern Learner: 'Move It or Lose It'

 Shaifali Prajapati 

 Shafali is a junior at Tabb High School in York County. She presented her Original Oratory at the Virginia High School League State Forensics' Meet held in Harrisonburg, VA, March 23, 2013

Move It or Lose It Article 

I have a test tomorrow, and I didn't study. I mean, I knew when it was and all, but I just didn't have time, you know? Ughh...Maybe I shouldn't have spent all week on Instagram. What am I going to do? I'm totally going to bomb this test! Who cares about physics anyways? When is the next time I'll need to tell the difference between Newton's first and second law?  You know what, I can't deal with this. I just can't...Stop!


Now who's been through that before? Read more

Annual Voting Ballot
Board Officers

Leadership is important in schools and in our professional organizations. Recruiting and retaining effective leaders helps VASCD stay relevant, active, and healthy.  Please take a moment to vote in our annual election of officers at this link.


Who are the Modern Learners? Not from Mr. Roger's Neighborhood

Phyllis Milne, VASCD Newsletter Editor

Another tragic event, this time in Boston, reminds us that the students we teach today live in a world far from Mr. Roger's safe and friendly neighborhood. "Modern" communities are considered too dangerous for biking, fishing at the lake, or other unsupervised play after school so today's children are enrolled in various sports, lessons, or clubs in the afternoons, on weekends, and in the summer.  Catastrophic news events bombard the airways, vampires and wolves are heroes of literature and films, students play Warcraft and Black Ops computer games, and confused kindergarten students are suspended for pretending to shoot a friend with their finger. Read more

VASCD Announces Plans for Annual Conference: @modernlearners

 2013 AC Logo

VASCD is pleased to announce the 2013 Annual Conference, "@modernlearners" to be held in Williamsburg on December 4-6, 2013.  


A fantastic lineup of preconference experiences and keynote speakers, the addition of new features to the conference schedule, and a major renovation of the conference hotel all promise to make the 2013 Annual Conference an outstanding learning and networking experience. Encourage your colleagues to join you in Williamsburg this fall.     


Two preconference choices will be held on December 4. The first features a day with Carol Ann Tomlinson, and the second invites you to participate in an Instructional Technology Petting Zoo!

The Annual Conference on December 5 and 6 features keynote speakers Rick Wormeli, Annette Breaux, Rafe Esquith, and Dave Weber.   


Great resources will be available from our exhibitors.  Special features are being added to the conference for 2013, including a Leadership Luncheon for new and aspiring school leaders. A variety of concurrent sessions on the @modernlearners theme will be presented by and for Virginia educators. 


Registration is open at the VaASCD website, click here to register now. Concurrent session proposals are being accepted through June 3. See the session guidelines and submit your proposal to us online. RFP.


2013 Southwest Va. Conference : "Broader Assessment for Deeper Understanding" with Dan Mulligan 

September 26, 2013, Southwest Va Higher 2013 SW LogoEducation Center, Abingdon    

This year's Southwest Virginia Conference promises to be a great one, helping teachers and leaders engage students in rigorous, meaningful, and engaging assessment tasks.  Join us for a day of learning with Dan Mulligan, opportunities to visit with exhibitors,  and time to network with colleagues from around the region!


When students demonstrate their learning in a variety of ways, assessment is more relevant and learning is more engaging.  Dan's presentation will provide teachers and instructional leaders with a road map for a comprehensive assessment system using multiple designs, including project-based, technology-enhanced, open response, and multiple-choice formats. Come find out how to get the information you need about students' SOL readiness while involving them in relevant, interesting tasks that contribute to meaningful learning. Participants will end the day with an array of ideas and resources as well as a process for choosing and using a range of assessment models. 

Registration for the Southwest Conference is open at VaASCD.org.  

Save the Dates!
Upcoming Professional Growth Opportunities

VASCD members know that in addition to our conferences, we sponsor outstanding professional development events throughout the year. We hope you'll plan to join us. As plans are finalized and registration opens, details will be posted at VaASCD.org. 


Student Growth, Professional Evaluation and Strategic Compensation

Date: June 17

Location: Sheraton Park South, Richmond

Presenters:  Alan Seibert, Tony Bagshaw, Scott Habeeb and Amanda Gibson

Description: Learn how relevant classroom assessment for learning, meaningful growth goals in all areas, professional evaluation, and strategic compensation models combine in a strategic, sensible system.

Registration: Open now at VaASCD.org


Constructing Assessments That Deepen Understanding

Date: September 25

Location: Salem Civic Center

Presenter: Dan Mulligan

Description: Design assessment tasks that capture SOL knowledge and skills in ways that give students variety, rigor, meaning and learning! This is "make and take" on steroids with an assessment focus!

Registration: Open now at VaASCD.org


Additional fall 2013 Professional Development Institutes will focus on:

-legal issues surrounding school technology;

- effective instruction for PreK and kindergarten children; and

- assessment strategies for early career teachers.


Watch our website for details. www.vaascd.org  


Laurie McCullough, Interim Executive Director

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"Instruction ends in the school-room, but education ends only with life."

- Frederick W. Robertson