Saturday, May 28, 2016

Board policy focus of state association conference

Twenty-five state school board associations were represented in Chicago May 17-19 to discuss board policy at the 2016 American Association of State Policy Services (AASPS) Annual Conference. Joining the 50 registered attendees were staff members from the IASB departments of general counsel, meetings management, and policy services.

Panels, including this one on recent federal developments, drew big audiences.
The National School Board Association had a staff member on hand to deliver the latest information regarding the implementation of the new Every Student Succeeds Act (EESA) and provide updates on other federal legal issues.

A variety of panel topics were presented by association representatives from throughout the country. Fifteen panel presentations on subjects ranging from restorative justice trends in student discipline and the use of drones in schools to providing policy services to association membership and community engagement were on the agenda. NSBA Senior Staff Attorney Leza Conliffe provided attendees with the federal update and led a session on implementing ESSA.

The schedule also included blocks of time for the policy experts to collaborate and share best practices that can be developed and adapted for their own regions. The school board association staff representatives shared common trends from their states and discussed how specific issues are impacting education systems and the local governance structure.

“This conference is an opportunity to network with others who do policy work at other state associations,” said Nancy Bohl, IASB policy services consultant and 2016 AASPS president. “We share various perspectives, identify emerging trends, and bring back ideas to our own states for developing sound policy for our school boards.”

For live updates and information about this year’s AASPS conference, follow the IASB Twitter and Facebook accounts, or check the conference hashtag at #aasps16chicago.