September 2016: School Administrator
Confronting suicide and responding to trauma
Preventative Measures: One District’s Efforts
Shifting focus toward deep and meaningful learning and away from rampant academic competition.
Managing My Own Emotions
One superintendent's reflections on the first few hours and days when they did not attend to the emotional needs of teachers.
Supporting Grief Among Students and Staff
Most school staff should be expected offer support to grieving students. After modest training, they can initiate conversations and provide ongoing learning supports.
Dialing Down Pressure in College Admissions
How we can reshape a college admissions process that dangerously elevates achievement pressure
Managing the Media After a Suicide
To deal with the crush of local, national and international attention, we shared well-established media guidelines with reporters and editors
The School Mental Health Dilemma: Philosophy vs. Funding
The ESSA makes a stronger statement than previous federal authorizations about the impact of nonacademic factors, including school-based mental health
Tiers of Differentiated Support
Multitiered systems of support is a flexible framework for integrating systems of differentiated supports to meet the needs of students
Exercise and the Student Brain
An interview with neuroscience expert John Ratey on misconceptions by educators about the mind-body connection
Applying Ratey’s Ideas to Our District’s Daily Regimen
Many teachers adopted John Ratey’s suggestions into their own classrooms across the district
Culture Is Contagious: How Happiness Saved Our District
The superintendent of a small Iowa district on using the parable of an orange frog to squelch a system’s defeatist attitudes
About the Happiness Advantage
When we are positive, our brains become more engaged, creative, motivated, energetic, resilient and productive at work and in the classroom
Profiles in Positivity
How does the Happiness Advantage manifest itself among our staff?
Motivated To Become a Superintendent
What 851 superintendents said was the primary reason for seeking the top post.
Soliciting for Her Students
A dilemma involving a teacher who uses an online tool without permission to raise funds for a class set of 20 Chromebooks.
Expanding Your Learning Network via #SuptChat
A new monthly column on leveraging practical value for school system leaders.
Partners Function Best When Setting Board Meeting Agendas
Whose fingerprints ought to be part of creating the meeting agenda for your board meetings?
‘Reverse’ Fees Elusive in IDEA Disputes
The pursuit of reverse compensation is usually an unsuccessful effort, according to an analysis of 57 relevant court decisions.
Returning to the Scene … and Finding It Inhospitable
After a seven-year hiatus, the author accepts a superintendency and sadly discovers the landscape moving in ugly, mean-spirited directions he doesn't recognize.
One Superintendent’s Presidential Campaign Platform
Inspired to act by what she was hearing promised by the main party candidates, the author shares her own 11 action measures for K-12 education.
The Illuminating Interview: BS-Ed and Education
Jack just got home from a long meeting with his school board. He kicks off his shoes, loosens his tie and clicks on the TV. A cable TV program about school reform hosted by Seymour Doltz is just beginning.
Who Is Raising the Village?
Last month, I introduced the Communities 4 Schools concept. Throughout this year, I will explore, expand and further develop that concept, which I introduced at AASA’s 2016 National Conference on Education in Phoenix, Ariz.
Connecting Health Care to Needy Students
A reliable predictor of personal attainment is the purpose of AASA’s latest toolkit.
Morton Sherman on Professional Networking
Debut of a new monthly column that details an AASA initiative and the association staffer squarely behind it.
'One Book' Program Sparks Districtwide Reading
School leaders in the midst of their districts’ family literacy campaigns.
Changing the Trajectory of Students’ Lives
The superintendent in Vancouver, Wash., is changing trajectories of students’ lives.
Advice May You Never Need
The superintendent’s platter is routinely overflowing and full of complicated matters. Yet nothing could be more emotionally wrenching than bearing the responsibility for sharing the traumatic news of a student suicide with members of the school district and the wider community.
Glenn “Max” McGee, an accomplished veteran of several decades in public school leadership, captures with sensitivity, candor and deep insight that unsparing experience in our cover story, one of the most comprehensive pieces we’ve ever published in School Administrator. We believe McGee’s detailed examination of how the Palo Alto, Calif., school district has responded in the aftermath of a suicide cluster deserved the fullest attention we could provide, and we encourage you to circulate it widely through our digital edition.
We’re supplementing McGee’s report on his school district’s prevention measures with stories that address the impact of stressful college admissions, how to deal with grief among students and staff members and the process of referrals to community-based mental health services. Another article looks at what could be newfound attention to student mental health under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act.
While we genuinely hope no superintendent finds a need to put into action some of the strategies McGee and his colleagues had to devise, we do welcome reactions to our coverage from our readers.