|Vol. 4 No. 3|
ISM On-site Consulting and Workshops
Work with associations has kept ISM Consultants on the road recently. One of the key services these organizations provide is professional development opportunities for their members. This year, they called on ISM to spark discussion about 21st century education and to provide training on preparing for a successful capital campaign.
ISM was one of the sponsors for the 2012 CASE/NAIS Conference (Council for Advancement and Support of Education/ National Association of Independent Schools), which was held in San Francisco, CA. A team consisting of our Development Consultant, a Senior Consultant, and an Adjunct Development Consultant presented a workshop on Institutional Readiness in the 21st Century, noting shifts in emphasis and some more radical changes affecting both schools and the task of development. At the end, they also commented on the word “advancement,” suggesting that best practice now includes admission, marketing, constituent relations, and development under one roof.
The Association of Christian Schools International (Northeast) partnered with ISM for ACSI’s Administrator/Board Conference in Lancaster, PA. The two-day retreat was structured around the topic, 21st Century Schools: Are You Prepared? One Consultant gave a keynote on the academic challenge; another provided a keynote on the operations challenges. Together with other presenters, ISM also led workshops on scheduling, teaching faculty how to market, strategic planning, and marketing. ACSI facilitators led discussion groups, which provided opportunities for reflection.
ISM’s Development Consultant gave two presentations at the North Carolina Association of Independent Schools (NCAIS) annual retreats for Trustees, Heads, and Directors of Development. At Advancement: Your 21st Century Success Predictor!, the Consultant encouraged 60 School Heads to think again about faculty as the front line of advancement, and to consider a model that ties together all elements of a school’s advancement operations. Then, about 30 Development Directors attended Institutional Readiness: Preparing for a Successful Campaign, which focused on what a school’s leaders can do to maximize the effectiveness of their fund-raising effort, while limiting cost.
Strategic planning is a task Heads and Boards undertake this time of year.ISM Consultants worked with schools in Texas and California recently.
At First Baptist Academy, TX, ISM assisted the Board and Head of School with their second ISM-produced, six-year strategic plan/strategic financial plan. The Consultant led the planners through a Friday evening seminar and a Saturday morning working session, and then produced both the plan itself and its financial attachment. The Consultant then took the planners through two reviews and submitted the final documents electronically to the Board leadership and Head of School.
At The Covenant School (Dallas, TX), the finished plan emphasized completion of this young K–12 school’s first building projects, along with expanding enrollment to the full capacity of just under 600 students.
Abraham Joshua Heschel Day School, CA, asked ISM to complete its second strategic plan, including surveys of the school’s current families, faculty, Board, and administration. The outcomes of the visit were shared knowledge of the school’s strong market position and the creation of a new strategic plan and a financial plan.
ISM Risk Management and Employee Benefits
ISM Insurance works with more than 1,000 groups for Directors and Officers Liability coverage. With employment practices claims on the rise, we want to assist clients in addressing this area. We recently held a workshop for the Philadelphia Area Independent School Business Officers Association (PAISBOA), PA, on risk management, including topics such as hiring and firing, interview questions, and evaluation. Participating schools received one percentage point off their premium for attending, and another one-point reduction if they implemented a new practice or reviewed any of the areas covered in the workshop within 90 days.
Through its partnership with the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), ISM is always looking for ways to provide additional benefits to the members. Recognizing a need on the part of the organization’s smaller schools, ISM is in the process of putting together an all-voluntary option that includes limited medical programs.