A Note from the SAIS President
Last week I had the pleasure of attending the 2014 NAIS Conference in Orlando, FL. Along with more than 3,500 other leaders, educators, and visionaries from around the world, I heard from some of the brightest minds in our industry, participated in lively discussions about the future of education, and enjoyed the fellowship of peers committed to creating exceptional schools. I know we all left enthused about our roles and equipped with many new resources. I look forward to seeing what great things independent schools will accomplish in the coming year. 
In this issue we discuss a number of trends impacting the head search process. I'm sure many of you are aware of the increase in head changes in recent years. In ensuring a great head tenure or transition, let me stress the importance of developing and maintaining an exceptional and transparent relationship with the board chair at your school. This relationship is key whether schools are enjoying growth or weathering change. 
The summer is fast approaching and we have numerous workshops available for you and your team. Consider joining one of our sessions for new or current leaders or taking part in a leadership retreat. We are always here to either provide advice or recommend resources to assist your needs. Information available at  
Dr. Steve Robinson
President, SAIS

21st Century Head Searches


While many independent schools today have a broad leadership team, the head of school is still the face of the school and the driver of its success. A strong head sets the tone on campus, and when coupled with a strong board, can accomplish great things. Choosing a head therefore is one of the most important decisions a board of trustees faces. 


Since every independent school is unique, there is great variation from one to the next. Similarly, some head searches follow a set process and outcome; while others are more complex. A new phenomenon that has organically risen in head searches is the emergence of the silent search.  >>Read more HERE

Leadership Is A Lonely Business
Leading a school at any level can be a lonely journey. If you're a head, you have no peer in your school. If you're a division head, principal, or hold a similar position of power, teachers may not view you as a colleague. And frankly if you're a middle manager, you may find yourself with more responsibility than authority, but still required to assume some degree of collegial distance. All of these challenges can take a toll, and SAIS is here to help with a variety of summer programs for school leaders. 
As one of last summer's participants remarked: "The most valuable part was networking with other administrators. The sharing of ideas always inspires and motivates me. It also invigorates me because I realize how much we are doing 'right' as a school and how much I love my job."  
>>Read more HERE
>>Register for a summer event HERE

Heads Leadership Retreat, April 6-7
  • Begins at 2 pm on Sunday, April 6
  • Adjourns at 12:30 pm on Monday, April 7
  • Featuring Ian Symmonds
  • Charleston, SC  
  • Sessions include:  Exploring Leadership, State of the Industry in Independent School Leadership, Creating Sustainable Leadership, and Moving from Theory to Practice

>>Register HERE

SAIS is saying a fond farewell to Emily Goldman who has served with distinction and grace as our Accreditation Coordinator over the past five years.  We have all come to rely on her calm support and wish her the very best in her next endeavor.  If you or someone you know is interested in applying to be the SAIS Director of Accreditation and Programs, please review the position description and application instructions.
21st Century Head Searches
Leadership Opportunities
Heads Leadership Retreat

Newsletter Archive 

President's Page 

Contact SAIS Staff 


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

March 27-28
Finance Institute 
Atlanta, GA
For heads & administrators who don't have a background in business or finance - learn to speak your CFO's language!  Facilitated by Barb Egan and Marifred Cilella.
April 6-7
Heads Leadership Retreat 
Francis Marion Hotel - Charleston
Growing Leaders in Your School
featuring Ian Symmonds


June 15-17
Institute for Senior Administrators 
Emory Conference Center - Atlanta
featuring Keith Evans & David Mahler
June 18-20
Administrative Leadership Institute 
Emory Conference Center - Atlanta
featuring Rob Evans & Michael Thompson
June 24-27
Institute for Heads
Grove Park Inn - Asheville, NC
featuring Rob Evans & Michael Thompson

June 29-July 2
Institute for New Heads 
Atlanta, GA
featuring Jack Hall (Walker School), Billy Peebles (The Lovett School) & Scott Wilson (Baylor School)
Institute for New Teachers 
June 24-26 | Atlanta
July 16-18| Charlotte
July 22-24 | Memphis
July 28-30 | Atlanta

October 18-20
Annual Conference 
Atlanta, GA - Crowne Plaza Ravinia

Blogs of Note 


Mark Hale, Head of Greensboro Day School in Greensboro, NC, discusses the role of play in learning mastery.


In "Déjà Vu: Too Late to Learn from China," global education expert and author Dr. Yong Zhao discusses why schools should not be copying China's education policies.


Weldon Bradshaw, English Teacher and Administrator at Collegiate School in Richmond, VA, discusses how setbacks and endurance are part of winning.


Rabbi Dr. Gil S. Perl, Dean of Margolin Hebrew Academy in Memphis, TN, discusses lessons learned at a conference conducted by Harvard University's Project Zero. 
2014 SAIS Annual Conference Breakout Session Proposals
Breakout session proposals for the 2014 SAIS Annual Conference are being accepted through April 11.  The conference will take place October 18-20 at the Crowne Plaza Ravinia in Atlanta.  >>Submit proposals HERE
SAIS Stakeholder Survey Center
  • Visit to see the 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, the sample questions, the timelines, and the sample reports.