June 16 – 17, 2022 On Campus
06/16/2022 1:00 PM 06/17/2022 5:00 PM America/New_York Andover Reimagining Transitions

A Conference for Educators to Reflect on Belonging, Curriculum, and Identity in the 9th and 12th Grades

How can we better support students as they enter into and graduate from our high schools?

The 9th and 12th grade years are important periods of transition that invite different approaches to teaching and learning. To support our students well, we need to understand them and our school contexts. This conference will offer an opportunity to learn from a range of inspiring educators who are rethinking how best to support our students.

Overview

The Tang Institute invites you to join fellow educators at Phillips Academy on June 16 and 17, for a two-day conference that will explore strategies for supporting student transitions into and out of high school.

Through a series of workshops, participants will examine different case studies related to various aspects of school transitions and imagine possibilities for 9th and 12th grade education in their home contexts. This conference is designed to inspire and prepare educators who wish to improve their own practice and schools.

Workshop leaders will include a range of teachers and administrators who have created and taken part in a range of inspiring initiatives. Their examples will spark discussions around assessment, belonging, mentorship, and pedagogy as it pertains to the development of community and curriculum. Workshop leaders will help participants reflect upon how they can catalyze change in their home schools.

Conference participants may apply their learning through a year-long Action Research Program supported jointly by the Tang Institute and Dr. Rebecca Stilwell, lecturer at the Klingenstein Center, Columbia University.

CONFERENCE DETAILS

The conference will be hosted by the Tang Institute on the campus of Phillips Academy, located at 180 Main Street in Andover, Massachusetts.

JUNE 16

Participants are invited to arrive in the morning, in time for a welcome lunch starting at noon. The afternoon will include several workshops, followed by dinner on campus.

JUNE 17

Workshops will begin at 9 a.m. and continue through the morning. A closing lunch will follow. The conference will conclude at 1:30 p.m. Participants who have been admitted to the Action Research Program will stay on for an orientation with Dr. Rebecca Stilwell, lecturer at the Klingenstein Center, Teachers College, Columbia University. This program will conclude at 4 p.m.

REGISTRATION

Participation for the conference is free.

Participants may book a discounted room at the Doubletree by Hilton in Andover, MA, through this direct link or by calling 978-975-3600 and requesting the Tang Institute Room Block. The room block with discounted rate will be available until May 26.

To register, click here.

Please direct questions to [email protected].

__________________________________________________

PRESENTER BIOS (IN ORDER OF APPEARANCE)

Nelle Andrews | Dean of Curriculum & Instruction, Miss Porter’s School

Nelle Andrews earned a bachelor of arts in English from Connecticut College, a master of arts in liberal studies from Wesleyan University, and a 6th-Year Degree in educational leadership from the University of Connecticut. Nelle worked as an English teacher and field hockey coach for 19 years at a public high school in Connecticut before moving to Miss Porter’s School in 2018. At Porter’s, Nelle has served as English department chair and director of faculty growth, in addition to coaching the field hockey and lacrosse teams and serving as an advisor. She lives on campus with her husband and three children.

Timothy Quinn | Chief Academic Officer and Dean of Faculty, Miss Porter’s School

Tim Quinn attended Westminster School in Connecticut, went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in political science from Amherst College and his master’s degree in education from Harvard University. He is currently an Ed.D. candidate in the University of Pennsylvania’s Mid-Career Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership. Tim has taught, coached, and worked in residential life at several different independent schools in both the United States and abroad and is currently the chief academic officer and dean of faculty at Miss Porter’s School in Connecticut, where he lives on campus with his wife and their two children. In addition to his administrative role, Tim teaches English and philosophy, serves as an advisor, and helps with coaching when he can.

Latasha Boyd | Director of Andover: Challenge and Empower (ACE), Phillips Academy

Latasha Boyd is in her second year at the helm of the ACE program and is beginning her fifth year in Phillips Academy's college counseling office. Her passion for empowering students has grown out of her roles as a middle school educator and college admissions professional.

Joshua Fost | Managing Director of High School Innovation, Minerva University

Dr. Joshua Fost has a diverse background at the intersection of science, philosophy, technology, and education. His recent work has included the creation of a quantitative measure of knowledge transfer; the use of Big Questions to focus general education courses on significant global issues; and creation of the interdisciplinary Minerva Baccalaureate program for high schools. Dr. Fost earned a Ph.D. in psychology and neuroscience from Princeton University, and a bachelor of arts degree in neuroscience and philosophy from Bowdoin College.

Lu Adami | Faculty, Milton Academy

Lu Adami is a teacher and visual artist from Chicago, Illinois. They recently received a graduate degree in education from the University of Pennsylvania. They enjoy working with affinity spaces and getting to know people as their most authentic selves in spaces that feel comfortable and genuine.

Talya Sokoll | Co-Director of the Putnam Library and Gender and Sexuality specialist, Noble and Greenough School

Talya Sokoll is a librarian, teacher, dramaturg, and DEI practitioner. They work with students in a variety of spaces and love to talk about gender, books, musical theater, and pickles.

Eder J. Williams-McKnight | Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall

Eder J. Williams-McKnight is an educator and poet who elevates deep learning and transformational experiences. Her work has included designing and developing curriculum, leading teaching teams, interdisciplinary studies, civic engagement, global literature through the lens of critical pedagogy, DEIBJ leadership, and experience-based learning. Currently, she is a coach for FORGE, a professional learning program of the Klingenstein Center.

Jane Beckwith | Director of Teaching & Learning, Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall

Jane Beckwith is a thoughtful and creative educator who is forward-thinking, deeply curious, and forever striving to learn more about how to best serve and support her community. She is a recipient of the Collins Family Awards for Faculty Excellence for innovation and collaborative leadership that moves faculty forward in both curricular initiatives and student-centered pedagogy. Throughout her career as a middle and upper school teacher, Jane has designed and developed experiential and interdisciplinary programs to engage middle and upper school students and faculty with hidden histories, anthropology, and the social fabric of their city and campus community with an emphasis on difference making at the heart of learning.

__________________________________________________

SESSION TITLES AND DESCRIPTIONS

Session 1: June 16, 1:00 - 2:15
Meaningful Transitions: Entering without Grades; Leaving without Exams
Timothy Quinn, Chief Academic Officer and Dean of Faculty, Miss Porter’s School
Nelle Andrews, Dean of Curriculum & Instruction, Miss Porter’s School

In this session, we will share how Miss Porter’s has made a variety of changes that have impacted how students transition in and out of our program. “Going gradeless” in 9th grade and developing opportunities for authentic, performance-based assessments are just some of the ways in which we have enhanced our programming. We will discuss how these changes can happen school-wide, as well as how teachers can make adjustments in their own classrooms to help students focus on learning rather than grades and see the relevance and meaning of the work they are doing beyond their classrooms. Participants should bring their own grading policies and a sample assessment that they might like to adjust as time will be given for people to use what they have learned to make changes to their own practice.

Session 2: June 16, 2:30 - 3:45
Challenging Perceptions and Empowering Our Students: Building an Anti-Racist Summer
Latasha Boyd, Director of Andover: Challenge and Empower, Phillips Academy

Students attending summer programs are seen as needing additional support for their transition to high school. We will review summer program best practices and student feedback to develop a summer program that honors the capital our students bring to our institutions.

Session 3: June 16, 4:00 - 5:15
Designing with Cross-Course Learning Outcomes
Joshua Fost, Managing Director of High School Innovation, Minerva University

Academic programs based on subjects—science, social studies, etc.—lack a straightforward way to nurture and longitudinally monitor student proficiency with concepts and skills that transcend subjects. Far from being exotic, these concepts and skills, which include things such as effective communication, evidential reasoning, identifying and mitigating bias, etc.—are broadly applicable in both scholarly and non-academic contexts. In this session, participants will learn how to craft a taxonomy of transdisciplinary learning outcomes aligned with the mission of their institution, and how to embed them into their own courses and assessment systems.

Session 4: June 17, 9:00 - 10:15
Another Kind of Transition: Centering Trans and Nonbinary Students as 9th and 12th Graders
Lu Adami, Faculty, Milton Academy
Talya Sokoll, Co-Director of the Putnam Library and Gender and Sexuality specialist, Noble and Greenough School

Join Lu Adami (Milton Academy) and Talya Sokoll (Noble and Greenough School) for a workshop and discussion on how to support trans and nonbinary students in their 9th and 12th grade years. First, we will give a brief overview of our research project focusing on best practices for supporting Trans/NB/GNC students, then we will discuss specifics surrounding how to support this group of students on a micro (individual/classroom) and macro (institutional) level with examples of how we can work to ease these transitions. We will spend time hearing anonymous anecdotes from students and then spend the rest of the session workshopping our own institutional plans.

Session 5: June 17, 10:30 - 11:45
Designing for Authorship
Eder J. Williams McKnight, Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall
Jane Beckwith, Director of Teaching & Learning and Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall

In this interactive workshop, the presenters will share their experience of designing and implementing Tulsa Term, a place-based, interdisciplinary semester program. Following a competency-based framework, participants will generate ideas and designs for authorship that are related to their own contexts.

Reimagining Transitions

Reimagining Transitions

June 16, 1:00 p.m. – June 17, 5:00 p.m.

A Conference for Educators to Reflect on Belonging, Curriculum, and Identity in the 9th and 12th Grades

How can we better support students as they enter into and graduate from our high schools?

The 9th and 12th grade years are important periods of transition that invite different approaches to teaching and learning. To support our students well, we need to understand them and our school contexts. This conference will offer an opportunity to learn from a range of inspiring educators who are rethinking how best to support our students.

Overview

The Tang Institute invites you to join fellow educators at Phillips Academy on June 16 and 17, for a two-day conference that will explore strategies for supporting student transitions into and out of high school.

Through a series of workshops, participants will examine different case studies related to various aspects of school transitions and imagine possibilities for 9th and 12th grade education in their home contexts. This conference is designed to inspire and prepare educators who wish to improve their own practice and schools.

Workshop leaders will include a range of teachers and administrators who have created and taken part in a range of inspiring initiatives. Their examples will spark discussions around assessment, belonging, mentorship, and pedagogy as it pertains to the development of community and curriculum. Workshop leaders will help participants reflect upon how they can catalyze change in their home schools.

Conference participants may apply their learning through a year-long Action Research Program supported jointly by the Tang Institute and Dr. Rebecca Stilwell, lecturer at the Klingenstein Center, Columbia University.

CONFERENCE DETAILS

The conference will be hosted by the Tang Institute on the campus of Phillips Academy, located at 180 Main Street in Andover, Massachusetts.

JUNE 16

Participants are invited to arrive in the morning, in time for a welcome lunch starting at noon. The afternoon will include several workshops, followed by dinner on campus.

JUNE 17

Workshops will begin at 9 a.m. and continue through the morning. A closing lunch will follow. The conference will conclude at 1:30 p.m. Participants who have been admitted to the Action Research Program will stay on for an orientation with Dr. Rebecca Stilwell, lecturer at the Klingenstein Center, Teachers College, Columbia University. This program will conclude at 4 p.m.

REGISTRATION

Participation for the conference is free.

Participants may book a discounted room at the Doubletree by Hilton in Andover, MA, through this direct link or by calling 978-975-3600 and requesting the Tang Institute Room Block. The room block with discounted rate will be available until May 26.

To register, click here.

Please direct questions to [email protected].

__________________________________________________

PRESENTER BIOS (IN ORDER OF APPEARANCE)

Nelle Andrews | Dean of Curriculum & Instruction, Miss Porter’s School

Nelle Andrews earned a bachelor of arts in English from Connecticut College, a master of arts in liberal studies from Wesleyan University, and a 6th-Year Degree in educational leadership from the University of Connecticut. Nelle worked as an English teacher and field hockey coach for 19 years at a public high school in Connecticut before moving to Miss Porter’s School in 2018. At Porter’s, Nelle has served as English department chair and director of faculty growth, in addition to coaching the field hockey and lacrosse teams and serving as an advisor. She lives on campus with her husband and three children.

Timothy Quinn | Chief Academic Officer and Dean of Faculty, Miss Porter’s School

Tim Quinn attended Westminster School in Connecticut, went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in political science from Amherst College and his master’s degree in education from Harvard University. He is currently an Ed.D. candidate in the University of Pennsylvania’s Mid-Career Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership. Tim has taught, coached, and worked in residential life at several different independent schools in both the United States and abroad and is currently the chief academic officer and dean of faculty at Miss Porter’s School in Connecticut, where he lives on campus with his wife and their two children. In addition to his administrative role, Tim teaches English and philosophy, serves as an advisor, and helps with coaching when he can.

Latasha Boyd | Director of Andover: Challenge and Empower (ACE), Phillips Academy

Latasha Boyd is in her second year at the helm of the ACE program and is beginning her fifth year in Phillips Academy's college counseling office. Her passion for empowering students has grown out of her roles as a middle school educator and college admissions professional.

Joshua Fost | Managing Director of High School Innovation, Minerva University

Dr. Joshua Fost has a diverse background at the intersection of science, philosophy, technology, and education. His recent work has included the creation of a quantitative measure of knowledge transfer; the use of Big Questions to focus general education courses on significant global issues; and creation of the interdisciplinary Minerva Baccalaureate program for high schools. Dr. Fost earned a Ph.D. in psychology and neuroscience from Princeton University, and a bachelor of arts degree in neuroscience and philosophy from Bowdoin College.

Lu Adami | Faculty, Milton Academy

Lu Adami is a teacher and visual artist from Chicago, Illinois. They recently received a graduate degree in education from the University of Pennsylvania. They enjoy working with affinity spaces and getting to know people as their most authentic selves in spaces that feel comfortable and genuine.

Talya Sokoll | Co-Director of the Putnam Library and Gender and Sexuality specialist, Noble and Greenough School

Talya Sokoll is a librarian, teacher, dramaturg, and DEI practitioner. They work with students in a variety of spaces and love to talk about gender, books, musical theater, and pickles.

Eder J. Williams-McKnight | Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall

Eder J. Williams-McKnight is an educator and poet who elevates deep learning and transformational experiences. Her work has included designing and developing curriculum, leading teaching teams, interdisciplinary studies, civic engagement, global literature through the lens of critical pedagogy, DEIBJ leadership, and experience-based learning. Currently, she is a coach for FORGE, a professional learning program of the Klingenstein Center.

Jane Beckwith | Director of Teaching & Learning, Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall

Jane Beckwith is a thoughtful and creative educator who is forward-thinking, deeply curious, and forever striving to learn more about how to best serve and support her community. She is a recipient of the Collins Family Awards for Faculty Excellence for innovation and collaborative leadership that moves faculty forward in both curricular initiatives and student-centered pedagogy. Throughout her career as a middle and upper school teacher, Jane has designed and developed experiential and interdisciplinary programs to engage middle and upper school students and faculty with hidden histories, anthropology, and the social fabric of their city and campus community with an emphasis on difference making at the heart of learning.

__________________________________________________

SESSION TITLES AND DESCRIPTIONS

Session 1: June 16, 1:00 - 2:15
Meaningful Transitions: Entering without Grades; Leaving without Exams
Timothy Quinn, Chief Academic Officer and Dean of Faculty, Miss Porter’s School
Nelle Andrews, Dean of Curriculum & Instruction, Miss Porter’s School

In this session, we will share how Miss Porter’s has made a variety of changes that have impacted how students transition in and out of our program. “Going gradeless” in 9th grade and developing opportunities for authentic, performance-based assessments are just some of the ways in which we have enhanced our programming. We will discuss how these changes can happen school-wide, as well as how teachers can make adjustments in their own classrooms to help students focus on learning rather than grades and see the relevance and meaning of the work they are doing beyond their classrooms. Participants should bring their own grading policies and a sample assessment that they might like to adjust as time will be given for people to use what they have learned to make changes to their own practice.

Session 2: June 16, 2:30 - 3:45
Challenging Perceptions and Empowering Our Students: Building an Anti-Racist Summer
Latasha Boyd, Director of Andover: Challenge and Empower, Phillips Academy

Students attending summer programs are seen as needing additional support for their transition to high school. We will review summer program best practices and student feedback to develop a summer program that honors the capital our students bring to our institutions.

Session 3: June 16, 4:00 - 5:15
Designing with Cross-Course Learning Outcomes
Joshua Fost, Managing Director of High School Innovation, Minerva University

Academic programs based on subjects—science, social studies, etc.—lack a straightforward way to nurture and longitudinally monitor student proficiency with concepts and skills that transcend subjects. Far from being exotic, these concepts and skills, which include things such as effective communication, evidential reasoning, identifying and mitigating bias, etc.—are broadly applicable in both scholarly and non-academic contexts. In this session, participants will learn how to craft a taxonomy of transdisciplinary learning outcomes aligned with the mission of their institution, and how to embed them into their own courses and assessment systems.

Session 4: June 17, 9:00 - 10:15
Another Kind of Transition: Centering Trans and Nonbinary Students as 9th and 12th Graders
Lu Adami, Faculty, Milton Academy
Talya Sokoll, Co-Director of the Putnam Library and Gender and Sexuality specialist, Noble and Greenough School

Join Lu Adami (Milton Academy) and Talya Sokoll (Noble and Greenough School) for a workshop and discussion on how to support trans and nonbinary students in their 9th and 12th grade years. First, we will give a brief overview of our research project focusing on best practices for supporting Trans/NB/GNC students, then we will discuss specifics surrounding how to support this group of students on a micro (individual/classroom) and macro (institutional) level with examples of how we can work to ease these transitions. We will spend time hearing anonymous anecdotes from students and then spend the rest of the session workshopping our own institutional plans.

Session 5: June 17, 10:30 - 11:45
Designing for Authorship
Eder J. Williams McKnight, Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall
Jane Beckwith, Director of Teaching & Learning and Co-Director of Tulsa Term, Holland Hall

In this interactive workshop, the presenters will share their experience of designing and implementing Tulsa Term, a place-based, interdisciplinary semester program. Following a competency-based framework, participants will generate ideas and designs for authorship that are related to their own contexts.

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