A Note from the President
Dr. Steve Robinson
In discussing the value of living a life committed to serving others, I'm sure many of you would say our friend and colleague Randy Tucker was the quintessential servant leader. Stanley R. "Randy" Tucker spent 26 years serving as the head of Girls Preparatory School in Chattanooga, TN, before he retired last year. He was serving as interim head at Battle Ground Academy in Franklin, TN, before his untimely death. Amidst the outpouring of emotions across the region, his impact on the schools he led and the lives he touched is evident and inspires us all. 
In this issue of HeadLines, we address the value of service to the community outside our schools by profiling three heads of school and highlighting their civic engagement. Developing a habit of community service and activity builds character, teaches us about the world and ourselves, and allows us to pursue something greater than our own agendas. It is at the heart of what every independent school seeks to provide. It is a component that almost every school includes in its mission and purposefully seeks to develop in its students. 
The three leaders who are profiled are stand-ins for all of us, whether a head of school, administrator, teacher, trustee, student, or friend. We have a great opportunity to serve and to lead and we can be inspired by each other and by the life's work of our great friend, Randy Tucker. Please visit the In Memoriam page of the GPS website for remembrances. 
"You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you." (John Bunyan) 
Dr. Steve Robinson
Call for Board Nominations

SAIS Board of Trustees | nominations due May 19

Nominations for the SAIS Board of Trustees are now being accepted. To nominate yourself or someone else, please review this information about board service. Nominations are due by May 19.

The board is responsible for the supervision, control and direction of the association. According to the bylaws, trustees must be heads of SAIS member schools. The board seeks to represent geographic diversity as well as diversity of school mission. View the current board of trustees.

The SAIS Committee on Trustees will process the nominations and review the nominees. The slate will be presented for approval by the membership at the SAIS annual business meeting, which takes place at the SAIS Annual Conference, October 18-20 in Atlanta. New trustees will begin their terms on January 1, 2015.  Submit a nomination for the SAIS Board of Trustees

Inspiring a Spirit of Service


As Head of The Heritage School in Newnan, GA, J.P. Watson wears many hats. Whether he is leading the faculty and administration, working with his board, cheering on his students, fundraising, or caring for his own family, he keeps a full schedule of commitments. Recently, Watson stepped out of his everyday responsibilities to participate in a unique fundraiser for a great cause. Watson and his dance partner were one of 11 couples to dance in Coweta County's Dancing Stars, a popular fundraiser that benefits a nearby women's shelter, Community Welcome House. 
SAIS President Dr. Steve Robinson says community service and activity is an important duty of heads of independent schools. The work models service and engagement to the school community, and also raises the profile of independent schools in the public arena. The civic involvement of heads makes their schools more accessible to the public, and combats a stigma of elitism that independent schools face. Lastly, heads that understand their local culture are more equipped to lead. "There's no better way to fully understand the culture of a community than to be active in a variety of ways through civic clubs, houses of worship, and other charity or service organizations," said Robinson. >>Read more HERE
Book Review
It's Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens
by David Skeen, Director of Middle School, Canterbury School, Greensboro, NC
Once upon a time in a land far, far away, young people lived idyllic lives. Teenagers, as they were called, always obeyed their parents. They would sit enthralled at the knees of their mothers and fathers, soaking up the hard-earned wisdom of these adults. Teens would tell their parents everything that was happening in their lives from the moment they woke up to the time they went to bed - at a reasonable hour, of course. Teens knew they needed their sleep and got plenty of it. Teen years were happy, simple, and easy. 
One day an evil sorcerer named Internet arrived in the kingdom. Internet and his minions, MySpace, Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter (collectively known as "Social Media") enticed and lured teenagers to share their lives and ideas.  >>Read more HERE
Hand sketching Online Survey Concept with black marker on transparent wipe board.
Thank You 
to Survey Participants
Thank you to everyone who participated in our needs assessment survey. We had over 1,300 participants representing a wide range of schools and roles across the region. The information is helpful as we consider what we do well, what you want us to do better, and what you need from us that we aren't doing.  Thank you again for participating - from those who know us well to those who barely know us at all. We look forward to serving you in the coming year.
SAIS Board Nominations
Community Service
Book Review

Newsletter Archive 

President's Page 

Contact SAIS Staff 


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

The word Events in cut out magazine letters pinned to a cork notice board. Events may refer to news
Summer Institutes

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

Coming this fall ...
October 18-20
Annual Conference 
Atlanta, GA - Crowne Plaza Ravinia
Blogs of Note 

Laura Hessler, the mother of a student at Girls Preparatory School in Chattanooga, TN, shares how former GPS Head of School Randy Tucker impacted her child's life.

Meditating on the meaning of Easter, Dr. Steve Whitaker, Head of The First Academy in Orlando, FL, encourages his readers to be patient with themselves and others, knowing that we are all works in progress.

Jay Watts, Assistant Director of Athletics at The Westminster Schools in Atlanta, GA, discusses the need for a Sports Information Director in large independent schools.

Kim Fisher Turner, class of 1988 from Greensboro Day School in Greensboro, NC, who is currently a school counselor at a school in Athens, GA, shares seven myths about college.

Scott McLeod, J.D., Ph.D., an expert on educational technology and the Director of Innovation for Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency in Iowa, shares 60 awesome learning apps for elementary educators.

2014 SAIS Annual Conference
We're excited to announce that the keynote speakers for the 2014 SAIS Annual Conference will be David and Michael Hanson, alums of Pace Academy in Atlanta. David paddled solo down the length of the Chattahoochee River in 2009. That journey planted the seed for their current documentary film "Who Owns Water," in which David, with brother Michael, returns to the Chattahoochee-Flint-Apalachicola Rivers to document the water crisis. See the trailer here.
SAIS Stakeholder Survey Center
  • Visit www.sais.org/surveys 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.