The National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA), “Ignite. Unite. Inspire” 2021 Annual Conference will take place next week on April 6-8. With thousands of Catholic school educators gathering to learn together, you’ll leave the conference ignited for transformation, united in community, and inspired by faith. The 100+ sessions are designed to help you grow both spiritually and professionally, learn new techniques and best practices from peers, and network with colleagues, so your whole team leaves feeling inspired and ready to tackle the challenges that lie ahead. Here are a few of the sessions that we’re looking forward to attending:

5 Can’t-Miss NCEA Sessions 

1. Building a Culture of Data Use in Your Schools

Speaker: Dr. Diane Cronin 

Time: April 7, 1 pm 

In this session, you’ll learn how to set expectations and develop a culture for using data in your school or diocese. Get vital information on how you can create expectations and how to get your teachers, staff, students, and parents engaged with the data. You’ll also learn about a few ways to communicate the health and growth of your school or network and the performance of the school(s) to external stakeholders.

2. Leading with Anti-Racism in Mind

Speaker: Elizabeth Rafferty 

Time: April 7, 3 pm 

Hear about one leader’s journey and go through a guided reflection to think through how you can bring anti-racist leadership into your own practice and school. Participants of this session will learn about and think through three essential circles of self as a school leader: Who are we as a school? Who are we as an organism? Who are we as individuals?

[Read: How to support school diversity throughout the admissions process]

3. Adaptations in School Fundraising for 2021

Speaker: Rich Fischer 

Time: On-Demand

Parents are not excited about the idea of their kids going door-to-door or sitting at a store with a mask on selling candy bars, calendars, or wrapping paper. Meanwhile, school board members, principals, and school leaders recognize the need to find additional avenues to become stronger financially and to further the mission and successes of their schools. Get tips and tricks for creating a well-executed annual fund to help connect the community to the mission of your schools while raising the necessary dollars.

[Read: Alternate revenue sources every private school should consider]


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4. Low-Cost Strategies to Increase Enrollment and Retention During a Pandemic

Speaker: Kurt Nelson 

Time: On-Demand

Attracting and retaining more students and families is always a concern for school administrators. But responding to the pandemic has already stretched budgets thin. In this session, you’ll learn about several highly effective strategies that don’t require any of your financial resources. This presentation will share proven techniques and an action planning guide to focus and renew your enrollment efforts.

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5. Yes, We Can Hear You – The Pandemic Lessons Learned and Innovations that SHOULD Last Beyond the Vaccine

Speaker: JD Ferries-Rowe and Jennifer LaMaster 

Time: On-Demand

Catholic schools and families pivoted quickly to address the challenges of COVID-19. Now, you need to reflect on the innovations that improved student learning to ensure you don’t lose any of them when you return to “normal.” In this on-demand session, you’ll learn about innovations to classroom technology and instructional strategies, student support services and building relationships within the community, and strategic decision-making focused on Catholic values and mission to determine which changes should stay for good. 

Ready to learn alongside other Catholic school leaders like you? With a plethora of live and on-demand sessions accessible virtually and a range of opportunities to meet up with peers and colleagues, you’ll leave this virtual conference refreshed and ready to try out a few new tips and tricks. We hope to see you there!

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