To Reimagine School and Learning for Student Success, NAIS Takes a Deep Dive

Spring 2014

The goal remains the same as ever in education: See students thrive from their early years onward. Amid a changing economy and more diverse student pool, is the current model – the traditional brick-and-mortar school with a teacher-centered curriculum – falling short? Are we preparing students well for a successful future or do we need to disrupt the traditional learning experience? What benefits could arise from this disruption and how could schools support and implement such change?

On May 14 – 15, 2014, NAIS will convene a group of expert educators and innovators at its headquarters in Washington to delve deeper into educational technology and blended learning. Topics will cover new models of learning and teaching, core benefits to students and teachers, how to serve a greater number of students as efficiently as possible, and opportunities for research and experimentation in independent schools. 

Participants include: 

  • Cindy Ambrose, Horry County Schools, South Carolina
  • John Bailey, Foundation for Excellence in Education, Digital Learning Now!
  • Chris Bigenho, Greenhill School (Texas), NAIS 21st Century Curriculum/Technology Task Force
  • David Cutler, Palmer Trinity School (Florida), NAIS Teacher of the Future
  • Laura Finefrock, Summit Public Schools 
  • Nancy Hennessy, AIM Academy (Pennsylvania)
  • Michael Horn, Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation
  • Susan Kearney, St. Paul’s School (Maryland), Association of Independent Maryland & DC Schools
  • Anthony Kim, Education Elements
  • Mark Kushner, Flex Public Schools
  • Mark Lauria, New York State Association of Independent Schools
  • Kevin McHenry, St. Andrew’s College (Ontario), Canadian Accredited Independent Schools
  • Scott McLeod, UCEA Center for the Advanced Study of Technology Leadership in Education (CASTLE), University of Kentucky
  • Michael Nachbar, Global Online Academy (Washington)
  • Eric Niles, The Athenian School (California)
  • Susan Patrick, International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL)
  • Brad Rathgeber, Online School for Girls (Maryland)
  • Sara Schapiro, Digital Promise, League of Innovative Schools
  • Albert Throckmorton, St. Mary’s Episcopal School (Tennessee)
  • Tom Vander Ark, Getting Smart
  • John Watson, Evergreen Education Group 

Following the summit, NAIS will share key insights that emerge and open a lively conversation on the future of learning and teaching in independent schools. We encourage everyone to engage in this NAIS Deep Dive. Please contribute your insight, thoughts, success stories, lessons learned, and innovative ideas. 

NAIS will seed the discussion by posting questions and resorces on Twitter and in the Idea Exchange on NAIS Connect. Follow us at @NAISnetwork and share your expertise and ideas using the hashtag #NAISDeepDive. Log onto NAIS Connect at with your username and password for the NAIS website. Together we can ensure students cultivate the skills necessary to succeed and thrive in the 21st century.