Ed. Sec. Cardona to Speak at AASA’s 2022 National Conference on Education


James Minichello


National Superintendent of the Year® to Be Announced at February Event in Nashville

Alexandria, Va. – January 11, 2022 – U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona has been confirmed as a speaker at the 2022 National Conference on Education in Nashville, Tenn., Feb. 17-19, hosted by AASA, The School Superintendents Association.

For generations, this in-depth, in-person, student-centered event has been catered toward public school system leaders so they can reconnect and network with peers in the industry while learning about important and relevant issues throughout the education landscape.

“Navigating the myriad of crises in education requires unparalleled leadership, which is why I am proud that our superintendents continue to work diligently every day to strengthen the social and emotional well-being of our young learners, while trying to accelerate learning for all students,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA, who will lead a ‘fireside chat’ with Sec. Cardona during the first General Session (Feb. 17) of the conference. The conversation will weave through the important work of the American Rescue Plan investment and implementation, the role of data collection, the enduring teacher and staff shortages, and the need to ensure continued support for public education. 
“I am pleased that thousands of our members will join us in Nashville to participate in enriching discussion and intensive debate on the critical issues they’re facing every day and how it impacts their leadership roles, community collaboration, district outcomes and student success,” added Domenech. 

Themed Learning for Student-Centered, Equity-Focused Education, focus zones will include transformational leading and learning, re-engineering learning, social environment and culture, and managing districts. Other keynote speakers are: 

• Tim Shriver, chair, Special Olympics International (Feb. 17)
• Leslie Fenwick, dean emeritus and professor, Howard University (Feb. 18)
• Mark Edwards, former superintendent, 2013 National Superintendent of the Year (Feb. 19)
• Michael Fullan, professor emeritus and former dean of education, OISE/University of Toronto (Feb. 19)

On the first day of the conference, the 2022 National Superintendent of the Year® will be named. The four finalists, announced on Dec. 20, 2021, include:
• Curtis Cain, Wentzville School District, Wentzville, Mo.
• Quincy Natay, Chinle Unified School District No. 24, Chinle, Ariz.
• Kamela Patton, Collier County Public Schools, Naples, Fla.
• Noris Price, Baldwin County Schools, Milledgeville, Ga.

(Click here to register to view a panel discussion with the four finalists to be held on Thursday, Jan. 13, at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.)

In addition, the recipients of the 2022 Dr. Effie H. Jones Humanitarian Award will be honored. This award recognizes leaders who exemplify the qualities modeled by the late Effie Hall Jones, an educator and former AASA associate executive director. This year’s honorees are Sharon Adams-Taylor, retired associate executive director of children initiatives and program development, AASA, and Luvelle Brown, superintendent of the Ithaca City (N.Y.) School District. (Feb. 18)

AASA will also recognize the recipients of its Women in School Leadership Award. This award pays tribute to the talent, creativity and vision of outstanding female educational administrators. Finalists in the superintendent category are Sharon Contreras, Guilford (N.C.) County Schools, and Avis Williams, Selma (Ala.) City Schools. (Feb. 18)

New this year, as part of AASA’s Live Well. Lead Well. initiative, is the Live Well. Lead Well. Health & Wellness Center. Conference goers can recharge and relax in this special area of the exhibit hall dedicated to mental, physical and emotional well-being. There, attendees can pet some dogs, take a brain break in a quiet pod, relax during a massage, burn some energy on the electric bike smoothie maker, make a snack at the build-your-own granola station and more. (Feb. 17 and 18).

AASA’s ever-popular Social Media Lounge is part of the program for the eighth consecutive year. AASA staff has worked with social media-savvy superintendents to bring the Social Media Lounge to life. Attendees will enhance their communications skills to make their voices heard on important equity and inclusivity issues and enhance their communications with their communities. They will also have a first-hand look at a "telepresence robot" Vecna's VGo Robot provides real-time audio/video communications and enables homebound students to replicate their presence in school and in the classrooms. All conference attendees can engage with their peers online by using the hashtag #NCE2022 in social media posts.

Whether they’re attending the conference or not, advocates for public education can follow the activities and conversations through AASA’s Conference Daily Online. The award-winning, multimedia publication, updated each evening, provides a comprehensive report on the conference proceedings, including coverage of key speakers, award winners and AASA governance activities, a Twitter feed and a conference blog that shares the experiences of four participating superintendents.

For more information about the 2022 National Conference on Education, visit http://nce.aasa.org/.

AASA is committed to ensuring proper health and safety measures are in place at all in-person meetings. Having closely followed the official guidance and information related to COVID-19 and recent variants, AASA will be requiring proof of vaccination or a negative test to attend any conference event (test within 72 hours of the event). Click here for more information on AASA health and safety protocols.


About AASA
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to equitable access for all students to the highest quality public education. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.