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NWAIS Conferences, Workshops and Events

Building Better Boards: Learning to Grow - Designing a Board Development Plan

Date: Wednesday - March 09, 2022
Time: 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Location: Virtual Workshop
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Building Better Boards:

Learning to Grow - Designing a Board Development Plan


March 9, 2022 – Virtual Workshop - 3:00-5:00pm


Good governance is the act of putting wise thought into prudent actions in a way that advances the well-being of those governed-Diane Kalen-Sukra



In this workshop attendees will explore the role of trustee, and learn from experienced trustees, heads of school and association leadership.

Offered throughout the year, each workshop is will focus on a different aspect of independent school trusteeship. The first workshop will cover independent school governance principles and a trustee's role. Later sessions will focus on specific tools and techniques that can enhance a board's performance. Previously this workshop was recommended for those new to the role, but feedback was that it was universally valuable. All independent school board members are encouraged to attend.



March Workshop Theme:  Learning to Grow - Designing a Board Development Plan

Research—and experience—shows that sustained learning leads to deeper, lasting growth. Because of how they operate, boards need to be intentional about their own professional development. This session will present different ideas on how to design a board development plan.


The workshop is a necessity for new trustees as well as not so new. The information is outstanding!  - Previous Workshop Attendee



Additional Building Wise Boards Workshop Dates and Themes

Each workshop will start at 3:00pm and conclude at 5:00pm. Attendees can register for each workshop individually and are welcome to attend a single session or all four.

  • September 17, 2021 – Virtual Seminar 1: Welcome to the Board of Trustees: Now Just What is Our Job?
  • October 14, 2021 – Virtual Seminar 2: Delicate and Dirty Dancing - The Board Chair-Head Partnership
  • December 9, 2021 – Virtual Seminar 3: Learning from Others - Exploring Case Studies in Governance
  • March 9, 2022 - Virtual Seminar 4:Learning to Grow - Designing a Board Development Plan


Additional 2021-22 NWAIS Governance Programming - Which Program is Right for You?


Building Better Boards: These workshop focus on board operations and case studies. This is best for those who are working on improving how your board functions and in identifying and exploring the role of trustee. This will be especially valuable for those in their first few years of trusteeship.

Institutional Leadership Through Governance (November 10, 2021): This full day, in-person seminar will provide a deep-dive into an current aspect of trusteeship. It will be comprised of morning and afternoon workshops led by national thought leaders in governance. Heads of School find this meeting especially valuable when they attend with their board chair or executive committee. While all trustees are welcome to attend, this will be most valuable to those with experience as trustees looking to take their board to the next level.

Board Chairs and Heads Partnering to Propel Schools (May 13, 2022): This single-day workshop is specifically built around supporting the special relationship of the Head and the Board Chair as they lead the board and the strategic direction of the school. Attendees have a chance to deepen their partnership as well as developing connections with others who share their unique role in other NWAIS schools.



It's a must do! This workshop is great for anyone new to a board - with or without board experience - Past Workshop Attendee

Some of the “Ah-ha” Moments From Previous Attendees:

  • Getting a better insight into the relationship between The board and Head of school. And how important that is for the long term viability of the school.
  • Good to get a sense of what other board structures, effectiveness and success has looked like.
  • Problems are not unique but I was pleased to see that our school is handling things correctly. Having never been on a board before it was great for me.
  • I think for me as a new board member was the clarification of my role as a board member that I take off my parent hat and think in terms of where our school will be 5,10,20 years down the line.
  • Role of board relative to school head, parents, teachers and school.
  • It was nice to get the perspectives of the group and how small or large independent schools have very similar problems.
  • I think it was great to have our board all hear the same thing from an independent source. Lots of ah-ha's


We can be a more effective Board if everyone goes through this session. - Past Workshop Attendee



Mark Crotty, Executive Director of NWAIS, along with experienced Heads of School and seasoned trustees will lead these workshops designed to elevate governance practices throughout our member schools. Heads of school, new trustees, current trustees and board chairs, are all invited to attend.



Definitely worthwhile. It is practical in terms of our roles and responsibilities, and very interesting. The workshop brought together a fascinating group of very smart people who were great to work with. - Past Workshop Attendee




Attendees can register for each workshop individually and are welcome to attend a single session or all four.

NWAIS Attendees: $45

Non-NWAIS Attendees: $95


Definitely worth the time and effort. Really well done. - Previous Workshop Attendee




Cancellation Policy

Substitutions may be made any time prior to the conference. Written cancellations received by the Monday before the workshop are eligible for a refund after a $25 cancellation fee. Cancellations received after the cancellation deadline are ineligible for any refund.


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T: 206.323.6137 • info@nwais.org
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