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Independent Spirit

André Withers | October 25, 2022

Not long after I’d started my first job in an independent school, I visited a friend at Cranbrook Schools (MI). The visit wasn’t particularly remarkable then, but about 10 years ago, when I was trying to come up with ideas for a student activities project, I recalled a poster I’d seen in that friend’s office….Read more »
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Your Own Child(ren) in Your School. Will That Work?

Brenda Hamm | September 12, 2022

You are a head of school candidate and you have children of your own. It can be a wonderful thing to have your kids in your school! Here are six pieces of advice for you to consider beforehand. …Read more »

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Writing an Educational Leadership Philosophy Statement, or Why Schools and Education Matter to You

Brenda Hamm | September 5, 2022

You want me to write an educational leadership philosophy statement? What’s that?

As you may recall from EC’s last newsletter, visualizing the three primary components of your written application (the resume, personal statement, and cover letter) as a Venn diagram, with each represented by a circle overlapping with the other two is a useful image to keep in mind…Read more »

PILAR

Culture Shock

Pilar Cabeza de Vaca | September 2, 2022

Having spent many years leading orientation programs for American teachers who are recruited to work in international schools for the first time, I’m familiar with the stages of culture shock one undergoes when moving to a new country. First there is the excitement of an impending adventure. …Read more »

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Take Care Of Yourself

Brenda Hamm | April 26, 2022

I know a CEO of a multimillion dollar corporation who meditates for two hours every day. Two hours! I’m in awe of the discipline required, not just to remain in such a focused state for that amount of time, but also to protect two full hours every day from the usual intrusions of work and life. He swears by his practice because, according to him, with it he is happier, more effective in his work, and more caring toward his family. Without it he is grumpier, more tired, and more impatient. But twoRead more »

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The Cover Letter

Brenda Hamm | April 26, 2022

The three primary components of your written application are the resume, personal statement, and cover letter. Visualize them as a Venn diagram, each represented by a circle overlapping with the other two. The intersection of all three circles is where the school knows you have a clear understanding of their mission, that you know some of the challenges they are facing in the coming years, how you can help them effectively address those challenges, and why schools and education matter to you….Read more »

SALLY

Board Support of the Head of School

Sally Mixsell | April 27, 2022

What should Board support look like? As a board member what should I be doing if I’m adequately supporting the Head of School? What are some resources I can tap into to help me be a better board member?…Read more »

JEAN

The Candidate Experience

Jean Lamont | March 23, 2020

Successful executive search work for independent schools has to be comprehensive. Search consultants discern the ‘DNA’ of a client school, interpret the current challenges, and bring to light opportunities. They recruit good-fit candidates who have the qualities, skill set and experience that make them ready for the leadership of that school. And they develop a strong partnership with the Search Chair(s) as they navigate the search process and the inevitable complexities that arise. A feature of this work that too often is taken for granted by search consultants is the relationship with the candidate… Read more »
MARCUS

Transition Plan

Marcus Hurlbut | October 23, 2020
For many years now, one of the hallmarks of an Educators’ Collaborative search has been our commitment to work with search committees, boards and school communities on matters associated with the transition from one head to the next. We know that for some in the world of independent school searches, the prevailing perspective is that the search is essentially over once an appointment has been made. We feel this viewpoint is shortsighted and, in the end, not in the best interest of schools and the critically important roles they serve. As my colleague John Mackenzie… Read more »
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Transition in Trying Times

Mary Seppala | October 1, 2020
A Cohort Model for Supporting New Heads One of our hallmarks at Educators’ Collaborative dating back to our founding in 1971 is our commitment to supporting all Heads as they transition into their new leadership positions, with particular and extensive attention to those beginning their first headship. Just as schools have had to reimagine many aspects of how they deliver on their missions in these extraordinary times of covid-19, we have reimagined our support for new heads of school. Mary Seppala, one of our partners, took the lead in designing a cohort model of virtual…Read more »
John

Hiring Leaders Who Will Succeed in Times of Crisis

John M. Mackenzie | September 23, 2020
(Author’s note: While this article primarily references heads of schools, much of it can also apply to the hiring of senior administrators and faculty members. This piece was published in the NAIS Community Market in September, 2020.) As a former Head of School, I have immense empathy for the challenges current heads are facing in 2020-2021. In addition to those ever-present “come with the turf” decisions, heads also are the voices for their school communities in response to the coronavirus pandemic and to the multitude of questions arising out of the Black Lives Matter movement…Read more »
John

Finding the Right Leader

John M. Mackenzie | March 23, 2020
“There has never been a more difficult time to lead a school.” This is a frequently heard refrain that grows more true with each passing year. While it is difficult to compare different eras in any endeavor, there are good reasons to acknowledge why the demands of independent school leadership now seem greater than ever. From different parts of the country the lists of contributing factors include similar themes: social media, the national political climate, post 9/11 parents, more competitive college admissions, changing demographics, results-oriented Boards, and, of course, a global pandemic. In this context…Read more »

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