Session II

Tuesday, March 26, 11:00 a.m.
Locations listed by Building, Room

Small Boarding Schools as Game Changers for PG Student-Athletes
Building A, Room 1
Elizabeth Hall, Educational Consultant; Hall Educational Resources
Joe Hemmings, Director of Enrollment Management; Bridgton Academy
Jake Dellorco, Director of Strategic Enrollment Management; Canterbury School 
Are you ready to redefine the PG year landscape for student-athletes? Join our dynamic breakout session as we unveil the compelling reasons why small boarding schools are your winning strategy. Discover the power of tailored education for athletic development, recruitment opportunities, academic growth, mental resilience, and injury care. Strong post-graduate programs are a great way for schools to enroll talented, well-rounded students, increase net tuition revenue, and improve college matriculation lists. For educational consultants and school admissions directors, it's time to "get in the game" where small boarding schools stand out as exceptional choices for PG student-athletes and learn why bigger isn’t necessarily better.  

Building a Better Bridge: The Transition from Therapeutic Boarding Schools to More Mainstream Schools
Town Hall, Swan Studio
Carolyn Nelson, Educational Consultant; McMillan Education 
Shaler Back Cooper, Senior Director of Marketing & Admissions; Cherokee Creek Boys School

Cat Jennings, Executive Director and Owner; Asheville Academy
John Kaufman, Head of School; Middlebridge School
Rachel Leja, Educational Consultant; McMillan Education
Matthew Woodhall, Head of School; The Woodhall School 
This lively, interactive discussion will help participants understand the profiles of middle school students attending these therapeutic boarding schools and the clinically sophisticated and caring treatment they receive. The conversation will then turn to the skills these students leave with as they transition to a more traditional school and how their experience prepares them (and their parents) for a healthy, successful transition. Representatives of more mainstream schools will then explain their work to integrate and support these students and how these students contribute to the academic and social community. A Questions and Answers session will follow. Conversation highlights will include the uniqueness of middle school students and this developmental stage; stigmas, misconceptions, and unique benefits; common work: intention around character development; skills needed to navigate academic settings (i.e., human relationships, EF skills); building parental capacity; assessing readiness; the healthy hand-off and the difference in style of communication. 

Meet Busy Beth and Skeptical Sam: How to Use Persona-Driven Admissions Marketing to Differentiate Your School Through Purposeful Storytelling
Town Hall, Blue Lounge (Room 14)
Lisa Leidy, Agency Principal; Square Spot Design
Lesley Gibbs, Director of Enrollment; Rectory School 

What do you do when what you believe to be your school’s differentiators aren’t actually very different from your competition? You shift your focus to purposeful storytelling. In this session, we will share how Rectory School followed the lead of purposeful storytelling brands like Airbnb and Apple to create emotional connections with right-fit prospective families. Learn how to develop personas that drive storytelling direction. Then, be inspired by how editorial photography combined with narrative copy—based upon student and family experiences—creates meaningful and memorable ways to demonstrate your school's unique value.    

Working Together Against Anxiety: Partnering Academic and Social/Emotional Supports in a Boarding School Environment
Kayser/Samford Community Commons, Private Dining Room
Matthew Toms, Director of the Student Assistance Program; The White Mountain School
Becky Beno, Director of the Learning Center; The White Mountain School

Anxiety is an increasingly prevalent component of the high school student experience, particularly in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Boarding schools are working to provide support for students who may be experiencing a recent spike in anxiety or transitioning back to the college-prep setting following a therapeutic intervention. The presenters have developed an integrated and collaborative approach by bridging academic and social/emotional realms in a small, co-ed, 9-12 boarding school. Research indicates that rather than accommodating anxiety, a more effective approach is to encourage students to step into their discomfort and develop strategies for managing their anxiety. The presenters have been implementing this approach for over 10 years and will share challenges encountered and lessons learned. In this session, there will be a small group discussion so that participants can share their own experiences on how to support the child as opposed to supporting the disorder.    

“But… Why?”: A Comprehensive Approach to Incorporate Restorative Practices into Student Conduct and Discipline
Building C, Room 11
Lydia Van Hoven Stoye, Upper School Dean of Students; Dana Hall School
This presentation helps participants utilize the Restorative Practice concept of Fair Process (i.e., engagement, explanation, and expectation clarity) to support a restorative culture in their school and evaluate opportunities to incorporate these practices into their existing systems. Through building on existing school values and norms, schools can establish a shared language for all community members to support student growth and development in challenging times. With Dana Hall School as an example, this presentation will demonstrate the steps necessary to move from a discipline to a comprehensive conduct system and intentionally define conduct interventions (even suspensions) in ways that support student growth and restorative outcomes.
190 Woodward Drive, Indian Springs, Alabama 35124
Phone: 205.988.3350
Indian Springs School, an independent school recognized nationally as a leader in boarding and day education for grades 8-12, serves a talented and diverse student body and offers admission to qualified students regardless of race, gender, religion, national origin, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. Located in Indian Springs, Alabama, just south of Birmingham, the school does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion, national origin, ethnicity, or sexual orientation in the administration of its educational policies, admission policies, scholarship and loan programs, or athletic and other school-administered programs.

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