Preparing Educators as Leaders

Strategies for Educational Improvement Summer Conference

2018 Conference Theme TBA

The 2017 conference has passed.

This year's Strategies for Educational Improvement Conference will be hosted by the KU School of Education, in partnership with the Kansas State Department of Education. The official 2018 conference theme will be announced in the spring. View the 2017 Conference Agenda (pdf).

Conference Date & Location

The 2018 conference date is not yet set, but it will be held at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kan. This full-day event will be at the Kansas Union (pdf) on campus. View information on parking & directions (pdf) through campus. 

2017 Keynote Speakers

All Means All: Bridging the Achievement Gap | View the presentation slides.
with Patrick Briggs, AVID Texas State Director

Briggs will encourage adults to examine their mindset and practice when considering if “all means all” in regard to educating students. His high-energy presentations will move listeners to positive action, both in and out of the classroom. Briggs comes to his position after five years as the AVID Texas State Assistant Director. Before that he spent 15 years as a teacher and administrator in Cypress-Fairbanks ISD in Texas. Patrick believes that any perceived “achievement gaps” are the result of opportunity gaps and expectations gaps that adults must work together to close. He serves on the Dream Team of AVID’s African American Male Initiative, which is going into its fourth year of working with predominantly African American schools to decrease the opportunity and expectation gaps by focusing on an asset model and Culturally Relevant Teaching for all populations of students. This work led to the highly successful Culturally Relevant Teaching course that is offered at AVID’s Summer Institutes. Patrick’s passion lies in helping all learners achieve at high levels so all students are college- and career-ready upon completion of high school. He believes that all students deserve a high quality education that will enable them to make choices in life that will lead to success in any field of their choosing. 

Powerful Pauses | View the presentation slides.
with Dennis Hodges, CEO of Creatalyst

Hodges shows us how just 10 minutes away from digital devices with nothing more than a pencil and paper can positively impact one’s creativity - even if the person doesn’t think they are creative! In his talks and workshops, he mashes up strategy, photography and creative thinking to challenge the audience’s perspective. Hodges is the founder/CEO of Creatalyst, a global marketing strategy boutique that teachers executives, educators, students and entrepreneurs how to unlock their creativity and drive innovation in their organization and personal lives. he believes that we're all creative and have simply lost touch with this side of ourselves. Serving as a creative catalyst (or creatalyst) he shares valuable strategies for reclaiming our innate gifts and turning ideas into action. Prior to launching Creatalyst, Hodges led strategic marketing and customer engagement initiatives for a number of companies in Europe and the U.S. over the last 30 years.

Call for Proposals

The call for proposals for the 2018 conference is not yet open. View the 2017 Conference Small Group Sessions (pdf).

Online Participant Registration

Participant registration for the 2018 Summer Strategies Conference is not yet open. Please note, individuals who participate in the Summer Strategies Conference can receive a certificate of completion from the School of Education upon request to be used within districts that offer professional development points for educator advancement. Register online soon.

Sponsorship and Exhibitor Opportunities

Sponsor and exhibitor registration for the 2018 conference is not yet available. Individuals and organizations who are interested in serving as a sponsor or exhibitor at the 2018 event are encouraged to complete our online registration form when it opens next year. More information to be provided. Please check back often.

Thank you to our sponsors:






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