2022 Now Boarding

July 23–25 • Boston University

NowBoarding

Now-Boarding-white
New to boarding schools? NowBoarding will get you up to speed and ready to make an impact! It’s a robust and reflective three-day on-boarding to the complex world of boarding school life. You’ll experience learning and mentorship to equip new members of a boarding school faculty and staff across all functional roles to ask the right questions and make an impact from day one.

Participants  will dive into topics including:
  • Why families choose boarding school
  • Becoming a student of your school’s culture and traditions
  • Unpacking the responsibilities of “In Loco Parentis”
  • Neuroscience and psychology of the teenage brain
  • Mental health and wellness
  • Boundaries and trust
  • Building equitable and inclusive communities
  • Professional goal-setting
  • Organizational strategies

When

July 23–25

where

Boston University

who

Any employee or volunteer new to the boarding school environment

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

Examine the mosaic of boarding schools as an industry to understand why families choose boarding environments and why professionals build their careers in boarding schools.

Develop strategies for becoming a student of the culture of your new school and the immersive learning community you’ll help to cultivate for your students.

Unpack the responsibilities of “in loco parentis” and take a deep dive into the cognitive, social and emotional needs of your students, including the brain science of teenagers, ways to support their mental health, ways to protect from misconduct and abuse, and practices that instill equity, justice and belonging in your community.

Assess your own personality strengths and qualities, hear tips from employees that just finished their first year in boarding schools, and develop a plan for how you can thrive within your new role.

Brainstorm, strategize and problem-solve with a personal network of new colleagues and mentors from across the boarding school industry.

For partners and spouses: Join a group of partners and spouses of boarding school employees for an informal conversation about the best parts of being part of a boarding school community and tips for making the experience a rewarding one for your family.

FACULTY

BRENT FERGUSON

Mathematics Faculty, The Lawrenceville School NJ

Brent’s experience in education includes both parenting (two daughters in different boarding schools) and teaching (math, physics, and chemistry) and coaching (swimming, water polo, and ultimate) at a number of schools, including two boarding schools: The Webb Schools (3 yrs) and The Lawrenceville School (13 yrs). As an educator, Brent has found his worthy work informed by his BA (Kenyon College, mathematics); M.Div (Princeton Theol. Seminary); much reading on pedagogy, history, and equity; and the relationship-building work that constitutes his 28 years of teaching and learning in community. Brent endeavors to learn from others earnestly, live among others intentionally, and love others generously. He is sustained by his faith, family, and friendships, and enjoys books and films, puzzles aplenty, outdoor work around the house, and sports of all kinds.

JAMES GREENWOOD

Dean of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Western Reserve Academy OH

Dr. Greenwood brings with him a deep and rich history working in independent schools. Most recently, he served as the Dean of Equity and Inclusion at St. Paul’s School in Concord, New Hampshire. Born and raised in Cleveland, Dr. Greenwood graduated from Kenyon College with a BA in American Studies with a concentration in African and African American Studies. He currently serves on Kenyon’s alumni board. He holds a Master of Arts in teaching from Brown University and a Masters of Education from Columbia University. This spring he earned his Doctorate in Education from Boston College where his dissertation studied how teachers develop their culturally responsive practice.

JACKIE O'ROURKE

Educational Consultant, Outermost Education Services MA

A veteran English teacher, dorm parent, field hockey and ice hockey coach, Jackie O’Rourke opened her consulting firm, Outermost Education Services, in 2018 after serving as the Dean of Residential Life and Leadership at Tilton School. A graduate of Cushing Academy, O’Rourke earned her BA and played ice hockey at Williams College, then added her MAT in Secondary Education from Boston University. After beginning her career at Berkshire School in Massachusetts as the Director of Student Activities, O’Rourke taught English for a semester at Boston Latin School before venturing overseas to teach English, coach soccer and serve as a dorm parent at King’s Academy in Madaba, Jordan. She later returned to Berkshire to teach, coach and advise. O’Rourke now lives and works on Cape Cod with her husband, Devon, and daughter, Finny.

Monday, July 19 • Noon–4pm ET

Understanding the World of Boarding Schools

BLOCK 1

“This is the Life!” Now Boarding Kickoff

Welcome to your journey into the world of boarding school! You’ll first get to know your program mentor, fellow attendees, and lead facilitators. Then, longtime boarding school leaders and staff will walk you through why they chose this world, and what’s keeping them here. And we’ll examine why families choose the boarding school option, diving deep into the data and sharing the stories that led them here.

 

BLOCK 2

Breakfast is a
Place where
Stories are Told

Great boarding schools have a clear guiding purpose expressed through vision, mission and values and they’re lived through daily practices and community rituals. A clear understanding of your school culture will guide your day-to-day decision making, communication style and relationship building. Working in teams, we’ll discuss authentic boarding school case studies and generate questions to guide your entry into your boarding community.

BLOCK 3

Unpacking
"In Loco Parentis"

When a family enrolls a student in boarding school, the leaders of the schools have the privilege and profound responsibility of serving and supervising in place of the parent. In this session, you’ll unpack the responsibilities of caring for the students in your care and explore the opportunities and challenges within key supervisory roles, including dorm parents and staff, advisors, and coaches.

TUESDAY, July 20 • Noon–4pm ET

Understanding Our Students

BLOCK 1

Neuroscience and the Teenage Brain

Boarding school students come to us at a time of rapid change in brain development which include greater appetites for social engagement, heightened risk-taking, vulnerability to peer pressure, and emotional exhilaration. We’ll explore the science behind one of the most thrilling and challenging chapters of life, and unpack its implications for guiding students learning and living in a residential community.

BLOCK 2

Mental Health
and Wellness

We’ll explore the key mental health and wellness concepts most critical to supporting students, including the latest science about anxiety, substance abuse, and self-harm. With this knowledge, you’ll have the ability to better promote and instill an environment of campus health and wellness.

BLOCK 3

Building Communities
of Inclusivity
and Belonging

When our students not only learn but live at our schools, the stakes for building truly inclusive communities of all racial, ethnic, gendered and international backgrounds are more critical than ever. Engage with a spectrum of student experiences and discern key takeaways for implementing in your professional and personal practice. 

WEDNESDAY, July 21 • Noon–4pm ET

Understanding Our Students and Ourselves

BLOCK 1

Supporting and Celebrating Learning Differences

In the boarding environment, you’ll find yourself supporting students with a diverse set of learning styles and cognitive differences. This session offers an introduction to the variety, and to the challenges and opportunities they pose for students. You’ll join your school community better equipped to support your diverse student body. 

BLOCK 2

Preventing and Responding to Sexual Misconduct

As boarding school employees, we have a critical duty to protect students from harassment, abuse, and any form of sexual misconduct. In this introductory session, learn the basic concepts for preventing and responding to suspected misconduct.

BLOCK 3

“Can I Have Beer in My Fridge?” Tricky Questions about Living on Campus

Understanding personal and professional boundaries in your community is key to fulfilling your responsibilities and developing healthy relationships with students and colleagues.  This session helps process the questions of living in the boarding school ‘fishbowl.”

OPTIONAL BLOCK 4

Meet-Up for Partners and Spouses of New Boarding School Employees

You’ve joined a boarding school community — now what does that mean for your partner? Whether you’re living on or off campus, invite your significant other for an informal conversation with other partners to chat about making the experience a rewarding one for your whole family.

THURSDAY, July 22 • Noon–4pm ET

Understanding Ourselves

BLOCK 1

Playing to your Strengths

An understanding of our personal strengths and our blind spots is important as you transition into a new position. Just as crucial is an imaginative empathy for others’ preferences. During this session, we’ll introduce a set of assessment tools to help you better understand yourself, your leadership style, and your personality traits. You’ll learn how a growth mindset with “both-and” thinking will serve you well in your next chapter.

BLOCK 2

Life-giving Practices, Organizational Strategies, and
Self-Care

As you begin your boarding school journey, you’ll want to dive in head first to fully embrace the community and, at the same time, put organizational and self-care strategies in place to support your well-being. Boarding school teachers and staff will share organizational tips and self-care tactics that helped them to thrive in their first year or two on campus

BLOCK 3

Rich and Rewarding Careers in Boarding

Once your feet are fully under you, how can you embark on a rewarding career within the boarding school world? Explore resources at your fingertips, and address key questions as you imagine how this new chapter in your professional life might unfold over the coming years.

BLOCK 4

Now Boarding Commencement

Wrap up your Now Boarding experience with a celebratory graduation and send-off into your new life armed with curiosities and questions, new colleagues, and unrelenting support from your friends TABS.

What do people say?

Ten times better than expected–get people here!
Alison Dowey
Blair Academy
Great! Every boarding school teacher or employee should be required to attend this program.
Joseph Odell
Forman School

Schedule is subject to change.

NowBoarding Schedule Overview

SATURDAY

JULY 23

8:00am

Registration

8:30am

Morning Sessions

12:00pm

Lunch

1:00pm

Afternoon Sessions

5:15pm

Welcome Reception

SUNDAY

JULY 24

8:30am

Morning Sessions

12:00pm

Lunch

1:15pm

Afternoon Sessions

5:00pm

Wrap Up

MONDAY

JULY 25

8:30am

Morning Sessions

12:00pm

Lunch

1:15pm

Afternoon Sessions

4:30pm

Wrap Up