Gardner-Webb Hosts Development Conference for School Administrators Across the Carolinas

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Dr. Bill Harrison, Chair of N.C. State Board of Education, Offered Closing Remarks

CILD-conferenceBOILING SPRINGS, N.C. – More than 250 educators and school administrators from North and South Carolina recently participated in the 2nd annual Summer Conference sponsored by Gardner-Webb University’s Center for Innovative Leadership Development.  The two-day conference, held on Gardner-Webb’s campus in Boiling Springs, focused on formative assessment, reflective teaching, and the developmental curriculum.

Dr. Larry Price, superintendent of Wilson County schools and executive director of the N.C. Association of School Administrators (NCASA), offered the opening keynote address.  Dr. Bill Harrison, chair of the N.C. State Board of Education, brought closing remarks.  “We have made great progress in public education in this state, despite what our many critics are saying.  But while we celebrate that progress, we must continue to develop innovative strategies if we are to realize our ultimate goal of providing all students a quality 21st century education,” he said.

Participants, who gave up precious summer vacation time to attend, enjoyed two days of presentations by educational leaders and curriculum officials from around the state. According to Dr. Doug Eury, dean of the GWU School of Education and director of the Center for Innovative Leadership Development, “participants gained valuable insight about current policy issues, funding issues, and curriculum developments straight from the mouths of those who are making those decisions.”

The sessions also offered practical skills and resources that administrators can apply in their own districts and campuses. Betsy Rosenbalm, a principal in the Newton-Conover City Schools, was present for the second straight year.  “This year’s conference sessions were incredibly useful for me.  We discussed everything from teacher assessment, teacher efficacy, to leadership development, and even technological tools that I can take back and implement immediately when I return,” she said.

While administrators like Rosenbalm raved about their experience at the conference, Eury insists that the benefit was mutual.  “As we begin to establish and grow this relationship with schools around our region, it will only enhance the product that we offer our graduate students in the GWU School of Education,” he said.

“It’s great to see this connection between higher education and the K-12 sector,” Harrison added.  “Gardner-Webb has taken the lead and reached out to the public schools in our region, and this partnership is really a model for others we hope to develop around the state.”

Located in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb University seeks a higher ground in higher education – one that embraces faith and intellectual freedom, balances conviction with compassion, and inspires in students a love of learning, service, and leadership.