Summer Issues Agenda

CUBE Summer Issues Seminar, July 23-25, Savannah, GA

Thursday, July 23
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.


12:15 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Lunch & Leadership Training Workshop

Selecting Your Superintendent: Strategies for Selecting and Retaining a High- Quality Candidate

Dr. Brian Perkins, Director of the Urban Education Leadership Program, Columbia University Teachers College, Department of Organization and Leadership

Next to policy decisions, the selection, evaluation and retention of the superintendent are among the most important functions of a school board. An average urban school superintendent of 3.2 years suggests the need for some important discourse and development around the conditions necessary to hire and retain those entrusted with the responsibility. This session was developed based on best practices employed by some of the country's leading search firms and professionals. Participants will gain insight and perspective on the task of hiring a superintendent from start to finish, including some tips on how to articulate and communicate expectations. Further, participants will receive some guidance on how to responsibly engage communities in a conversation about who is needed for the job. View Presentation

Corporate Partner: BoardDocs

4:45 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

CUBE Networking Reception (Onsite)

Corporate Partner: First Student
First Student Logo

Friday, July 24
6:00 a.m. – 8:00 a.m.

5k Run/Walk

Get your team together now – either a 3-person relay or individual walk/run.

Corporate Partner: Humana Vitality
Humana Vitality logo

7:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.


7:45 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.

Breakfast Buffet

8:45 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.

Welcome Remarks/CUBE Update

9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.

Keynote Presentation

How to Create a Task Force on Schools in Challenging Environments

Presenters: Gina Patterson, Executive Director, Virginia School Boards Association, Dr. Mark Lineburg, Superintendent, Winchester City Public Schools, and Rodney Jordan, Board Member, Norfolk Public Schools, VA.

In 2013 the Virginia School Boards Association devised a proactive plan to create a state Task Force on Schools in Challenging Environments. The goal of the task force was to collect and share best practices, build community, and most importantly, engage local leaders in courageous conversations to improve Virginia’s public schools. Learn about the important work of the VSBA Task Force on Schools in Challenging Environments, the importance of courageous conversations around race and poverty, reasons that this is a critical issue not only for Virginia but the entire country, as well as ways that your school board members and state can be replicate this movement. View Presentation
View VSBA Task Force Report

Corporate Partner: My School Squared

10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Breakout Sessions

Racial Equity Development: Enacting District-wide Policy

This clinic is hosted by CUBE’s Racial Isolation Task Force.

Presenters: Dr. Rita Bishop, Superintendent, Roanoke City Public Schools, VA and Ms. Mae G. Huff, School Board Member, Roanoke City Public Schools, VA

The most imperative responsibility for each public educational district in our nation is to provide every student with a high quality, free, equitable and public education. Courageous educational leaders move districts and schools toward creating and implementing systems that will ensure educational and racial equity for every student, in every classroom, every day. Learn what Roanoke (VA) City Public Schools is doing to create an organizational culture of inclusion, racial equity and academic excellence for every student. View Presentation

Narrowing the Academic and Opportunity Gaps

This clinic is hosted by CUBE’s Urban Student Achievement Task Force.

Presenter: Adrienne D. Dixson, PhD, Associate Professor, Critical Race Theory and Education, Department of Education Policy, Organization and Leadership, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Historically, low-income students as a group have performed at a lower rate than higher-income students on most measures of academic success—including standardized test scores, grades, high school completion rates, and college enrollment and completion rates. Additionally, low-income student groups do not have the same access to resources as other groups. Countless studies have documented these disparities and investigated the many underlying reasons for them. This session will highlight key strategies that urban districts have used to defy the odds and narrow the achievement and opportunity gaps between these groups.

Continuing the Conversation about Charter Schools

This clinic is hosted by CUBE’s Charter Schools Task Force.

Presenters: David Stone, Board Member, Baltimore City Public Schools and CUBE Steering Committee Member, Elisa A. Falco, M.Ed., Vice President, School Services, Georgia Charter Schools Association, and Stephanie Klupinski, Executive Director of Charter Schools, Cleveland Metropolitan School District

Moderator: Minnie-Forte-Brown, Board Member, Durham Public Schools and CUBE Immediate Past Chair

Urban school board members are closely monitoring the national debate over the promise and limitations of charter schools and their impact on school systems. This discussion will highlight how school districts are handling their relationships with charter schools, authorizing and oversight responsibilities, engagement in policy debates over the role of charter schools, and the potential for traditional public schools to benefit from the experience of charter schools.

12:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.

Luncheon Buffet and Speakers

NSBA’s Council of School Attorneys: Leadership in Legal Advocacy for Public Schools

Presenters: Lester B. Johnson, III, Assistant School Board Attorney, Savannah-Chatham County Public School system, and Chair of the Georgia Council of School Attorneys, and Phillip L. Hartley, Managing Partner, Harben, Hartley & Hawkins, LLP, Gainesville, Georgia and General Counsel for the Georgia School Boards Association

Learn how the 3000+ members of NSBA’s Council of School Attorneys stay up to date on crucial legal issues affecting public schools, collaborate with colleagues on tricky issues facing their clients, and plug into the NSBA Legal Advocacy program. Lester Johnson, attorney to CUBE member Savannah-Chatham, and Phil Hartley, General Counsel to the Georgia School Boards Association, share their unique perspectives on how COSA benefits their practice and their school board clients. View Presentation


1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

District Workshops

Join colleagues from around the country in one of CUBE’s most popular sessions, where board members of like-sized districts meet to discuss issues pertinent to urban districts, and the ways in which their respective urban school districts are responding. The focus will be on effective policies that address student achievement.

  • Small-size urban districts (under 30,000)
  • Mid-size urban districts (30,000 - 60,000)
  • Large-size urban districts (60,000 and over)
3:15 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.

General Session

Supporting Reform: The Role of the Board of Education

Dr. Andre Perry

Dr. Andre Perry, Principal, A.M. Perry Consulting

Efforts to optimize boards’ contributions to targeted improvement efforts hinge on cultivating effective board leadership, board induction, and ongoing training regarding board operations and education policy. Former New Orleans school reformer Andre Perry, who played a role in turning around that city’s struggling schools in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, will provide key recommendations to help board members uncap the potential of school boards to function as central catalysts driving meaningful and sustainable school reform efforts.

4:15 p.m.

Closing Remarks

5:15 p.m. – 7:15 p.m.

Networking Reception - Savannah Riverboat Cruises

Corporate Partner: GCA 
First Student Logo

Saturday, July 25
7:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.


8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

Breakfast Buffet

9:15 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

General Session

A Shared Discussion on Leadership for Equity

Presenter: Arturo Vargas, Executive Director, National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO)

This session will highlight the responsibilities and crucial roles elected officials play in bringing forward solutions for closing the opportunity and achievement gaps for every child with a specific focus on underrepresented students. View Presentation

Corporate Partner: Virgin Pulse

10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Breakout Sessions

Creating a Pipeline of Effective Teachers for Urban Schools

This clinic is hosted by CUBE’s Urban Student Achievement Task Force.

Presenter: Dr. Andre Perry, Principal, A.M. Perry Consulting

With increased recognition that expert teachers are perhaps the most fundamental resource for improving student learning, there is growing interest in figuring out how to recruit and retain strong teachers, especially in high-need schools. This clinic will highlight successful strategies for recruiting and retaining effective teachers in Urban School Districts.

Going Digital: Innovative uses of Technology in Urban School Districts

This clinic is hosted by CUBE’s Communications Task Force.

Presenters: Jolene Byrne, President of the Board, Savannah-Chatham Public Schools, GA and Wendy Marshall, Program Manager, Instructional Technology, Savannah-Chatham Public Schools, GA

Technology innovations enable local school boards to connect with their communities and support students and teachers. Many school districts have expanded their use of innovative technologies district-wide as well as in the classroom. This clinic will showcase an exemplary school boards’ and districts’ use of technology to govern the district, communicate with students, parents and the community and to improve district operations.

Pledge of Achievement: Fulton County School District

Presenter: Mr. Kenneth Zeff, Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer, Fulton County School District, GA and Ms. Linda McCain, Board President, Fulton County School District, GA

Board governance and leadership guide urban school districts around the country every day. As difficult decisions are made at every level in a school system, the leadership team is at the forefront of tough decisions regarding what is best for its students. Learn how CUBE’s Winner of the 2014 Annual Award for Urban School Board Excellence is aligning the work of the district and the support of the community to improve student achievement.

12:15 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

General Session/Lunch

The Role of Supportive School Environments in Promoting Academic Success

Dr. David Stovall

Dr. David Stovall, Associate Professor of African American Studies and Educational Policy Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago

What influence does a caring, supportive school environment have on the course of students’ academic success—their academic attitudes, motivation, engagement, and goal setting; their staying in and graduating; their grades and test scores? Poor school achievement is certainly a concern in its own right and is the focus of most current school improvement efforts. This session will highlight effective policies that can be used to help to create school environments that are conducive to learning and promote academic achievement.

2:00 p.m.

Closing Remarks

CEU Credits

To help you track the skills you’ve learned, and to complete professional development and CEU Requirements, we will provide proof of participation for the sessions you attend at CUBE’s Summer Issues Seminar in Savannah, Georgia.

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