Human Connections Matter  
A Note from SAIS President Dr. Steve Robinson


We have never been more connected than we are today. Technology has linked cultures, continents, markets, communities, and people. Whether we reach out to those close to us in an instant on our phones, or those far away via online forums or media, the possibilities, the calls, the updates, the statuses, the likes, the sharing of information and knowledge is limitless. 


Still, we are human and human connection matters. Creativity flows when we work face-to-face with our peers brainstorming ideas, sharing experiences, searching for solutions. Collaboration is accelerated when there is no lag, no loading time, and no screen filtering our interactions and framing our reactions. Experience, as many a poet, scientist and historian has said, is the greatest teacher, and there is a fulfillment from such interactions that cannot be replicated remotely. 


So, with that in mind, I invite you to join us at the 2013 Annual Conference- The Global Future: Preparing Students and Shaping Schools. Hear from experts about the latest research and trends. Share your experiences and expertise with your peers. Stretch your 21st century skills: creating, connecting, collaborating, and communicating in community. And together we can prepare for the global future.


>>Read more HERE.

Annual Conference Preview: Personal Journey and the Imperative for Global Education  


For Nishant N. Mehta, Head of The Children's School in Atlanta, globalization is more than a forecast; it's part of his personal story. Nishant was born in Mumbai, India, the youngest of two sons. His father attended graduate school in the United States, and felt the experience had been greatly beneficial. He encouraged both of his children to also study abroad. Through a friend, Nishant heard about The Asheville School, in Asheville, NC, and convinced his parents to allow him to pursue admission. The tuition was more than his family could afford, but Nishant was able to receive a 90 percent scholarship. In 1996, he left Mumbai for Asheville. 

>>Read more HERE.

The Search Firm:  
What They Didn't Tell You
Part 4 of 5 | Succession Planning Series


When a search consultant met with one long-tenured head, the head asked what her role should be in the transition. He replied, "Don't leave the next guy with a mess." The consultant emphasized the need for the outgoing head to make any personnel changes as quickly as possible. However, heads shared two opposing perspectives on this directive. One camp, including the head who shared this narrative, felt that the outgoing head should not make major personnel decisions on the way out the door, especially since any and all changes in a school cause a certain degree of disruption, and too much change can cause a community to reach a tipping point. Moreover, these outgoing heads felt that a successor should have the opportunity to ascertain his team's strengths and weaknesses and choose replacements that match his style of leadership. 


This is Part 4 of the five-part series on "Transitions and Succession Planning," which was a project undertaken by SAIS to capture the thoughts and insights of novice, experienced, retiring, retired, and interim heads. The focus of Part 4 is on the search firm: tips on how to go out with a clean house and a variety of things the search firm won't tell youThe project will be released in its entirety at the 2013 SAIS Annual Conference, October 27-29.  >>Read more HERE.

 Annual Conference Preview: Two Education Paradigms


Yong Zhao believes the current education system to be flawed, ineffective, and focused not on maximizing individual talents and diversities, but on producing homogenous, compliant, and employee-minded test-takers. He challenges the traditional paradigm, debunks the myth of international tests such as PISA and TIMSS, and proposes a new paradigm of education aimed at cultivating diverse, creative, and entrepreneurial talents. He says educators should take their cues on curriculum from the students themselves, and encourage them to be innovative, pioneering risk takers. He urges educators to focus on cultivating strengths and individuality, not simply on fixing weakness and mandating standards.

>>Read more HERE.

association business
Board of Trustee Nominations

The SAIS Board of Trustees proposes the following slate 

of new trustees for service beginning January 1, 2014

  • Fred Asaaf | Pace Academy, Atlanta GA
  • Ian Craig | Harding Academy, Nashville TN
  • Rachel Deems | Spartanburg Day School, Spartanburg SC
  • Bill McGee | Hill Country Christian School, Austin TX

The membership will have the opportunity to elect trustees at the SAIS Annual Business Meeting, which takes place during the Annual Conference, on Sunday, October 27, at 12:00 PM.

Officers Elected

The SAIS Board of Trustees elected the following slate 

of officers for service beginning January 1, 2014:

  • CHAIR: Barbara Daush | St. Agnes Academy-St. Dominic School, Memphis TN
  • TREASURER: Dennis Manning | Norfolk Academy, Norfolk VA
  • SECRETARY: Marvin Lishman | Magnolia Heights School, Magnolia Heights MS
Bylaws Change
The SAIS Board of Trustees recommends a bylaws change amending the fiscal year-end from June 30 to December 31. The membership will be asked to vote on this amendment at the SAIS Annual Business Meeting on Sunday, October 27, as follows (new text in red):



The fiscal year of corporation, for tax and financial accounting purposes shall be the 12-month period ending on the last day of each December. All budgets must be approved by the Board of Trustees. The dues of the Association will be determined by the Board of Trustees and are to be paid annually by a date set by the Board of Trustees. Financial policies for the association shall be determined from time-to-time by a committee of the board, subject to the board's directives.  
Review the current bylaws at
opportunities for your school community
Admissions Forums

Various dates & locations across the region 


Create a road map for your school's strategic enrollment management process! This workshop will help you understand the elements, aspects, and requirements of embarking on a strategic enrollment management plan. In addition, you will develop an understanding of the role and importance of tuition elasticity in your institutional financial model. 


>>More info here
Digital Leadership
Part 3 of 5: Succession Planning
Digital Leadership
Annual Conference (Oct 27-29)

Newsletter Archive 

President's Page 

Contact SAIS Staff 


Do you have a colleague who would benefit from this eNL? They can subscribe here.


The Global Future: Preparing Students and Shaping Schools

October 27-29 | Atlanta, GA

$375 (through Oct 18)
$425 (after Oct 18)


10:00 AM > Ian Symmonds
"The Global Flattening of Education"
2:00 PM > Jan Pullen
"Global Education, Emotional Intelligence, and Empathy"

-Nishant N. Mehta, Head of The Children's School
-Jay Bonner, Associate Head of The Asheville School
-Chris Harth, Director of Global Studies at St. Andrew's Episcopal School
"Personal Journey and the Imperative for Global Education"

10:15 AM > Dr. Yong Zhao
"Educating Creative & Entrepreneurial Students"
2:00 PM > Janice Abraham
"International Risk Management"

8:15 AM > Dr. Yong Zhao, Dean, College of Education, University of Oregon:
"What Defines a World-Class Education"
3:00 PM > Pierre Ferrari, CEO, Heifer International:
"The World as an Opportunity 
to Serve"

The conference schedule offers a variety of learning opportunities for independent school leaders, including these and other sessions:
  • Legal Concerns When Enrolling International Students (Caryn Pass & Heather Broadwater)
  • Developing Global Citizens in Our Youngest Students
    (Frances Lonergan & Julie Scherrer)
  • Flat, Flexible, Focused: 21st Century Models of School Transformation (Brett Jacobsen & Nishant N. Mehta)
  • Mental and Emotional Health: The Forgotten Risk Area (Ann McCollum)
  • Implementing, Sustaining, and Maintaining a 1-to-1 Global Program (Matt Scully, Eric Hedinger & Derrick Willard)
  • Using Dashboards to Consolidate All Your Important School Data (Jeffrey Mitchell, Barry Peterson & Mary Crawford)
  • Strategies for 21st Century Leaders (William Taylor & Ken Kay)
Blogs of Note
Joan King, Interim Head of School of The Atlanta Girls' School, discusses the importance of making content relevant to students and teaching with enthusiasm.
David Colon, Academic Dean of the Collegiate School in Richmond, VA, shares the school's summer reading alternative:  summer "doing," where students and faculty looked for "signals" of the future in articles, photos, stories and more.  
Donna Siebenthaler, Curriculum Director and History Teacher at Trinity Presbyterian School in Montgomery, AL, shares six lessons she's learned about leadership
Scott Phillipps, Head of Houston Academy in Dothan, AL, shares his wonder and excitement, watching the potential and power of social media, blending learning environments and technology in the classroom.  
Mason West, Director of Community Learning at Randolph School in Huntsville, AL, shares his wonder watching one of Randolph's students present at the departments of Justice and Education's National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention. 
SAIS Stakeholder Survey Center Now Open!


  • Visit to see the new stakeholder surveys available to you and your school community.
  • SAIS has created a series of highly reliable and valid stakeholder surveys for you to use either in conjunction with a strategic visioning process or just to take the pulse of your community.  
  • Be sure to check out the video explanation, sample questions, timelines, and sample reports.