The following page is an archive of the Smart Start Summer Summit that ran from August 3 through August 27. You may also be interested in an archive of the Smart Start Webinar Series that took place May 19 through July 2, 2020.

The Alaska Smart Start 2020 Summer Summit is a virtual, multi-day professional development event starting August 4th, 2020, and running through August 27th, 2020, with a bonus pre-session on August 3rd. The Summer Summit seeks to create a variety of spaces for people to connect, enhancing the collective wisdom for K12 education in Alaska. 

  • Mondays offer sessions developing communities around various topics, collaborating in size-alike districts; 
  • Tuesdays present specific topics within Capacities and Conditions for Learning; 
  • Wednesdays provide opportunities for Virtual Consultations; and 
  • Thursdays focus on the Continuity of Learning. 

As we keep Alaska’s 130,000+ students’ learning at the core of our work together, we encourage engagement, flexible thinking, and innovation with our community of stakeholders.

 

Registrant FrontPageslides, recordings, links

 

Past Sessions

Monday, August 3rd
Rallying Your Team for a Successful Smart Start and Beyond — Over the last several months, schools and districts have been working to create Smart Start plans that prepare us for operating in any zone. Now as we edge closer to the school year, it’s time to take a collective look toward executing plans under continued uncertainty. Participants will have the opportunity to engage in conversations with colleagues in a session led by our partner Anthony Taylor of SME Strategy. The session will anchor into one of the three essential elements of effective execution: communication, goal setting, and accountability.

9:00-10:30am

Pathways out of Poverty: Reading by 3rd Grade Matters — Learn how your community can join together to create a campaign that matches the Alaska Challenge to support all students to read at grade level by the end of third grade. Learn about a nationwide campaign that mobilizes communities to find solutions for one of the major obstacles in the pathway out of poverty — failure to read proficiently by the end of third grade. There are now more than 300 communities across the United States and Canada that have mobilized to make progress on measures of early school success for low-income children. Join us for a conversation about what's working well across the Grade Level Reading Network, and how communities are reaching higher levels of success, sustainability, and scale in improving school readiness, school attendance, summer and afterschool learning, and grade-level proficiency. Find out more about how your community can join the Grade Level Reading Network and become part of this movement.

1:00-2:30pm

Tuesday, August 4th
Unprecedented Partnership for Unprecedented Times: Smart Start 2020 - Summer Summit Kick-off, Commissioner Johnson - Keynote Dr. Zink - Update on Mitigation Guidance — Join us as we kick off the month-long professional development for our community of Alaska learners. New normal means new partnerships and you will experience first hand the partnership which addresses both the educational and medical challenges within our state. Our mission is not COVID19 and it is not our strategic plan. Our mission is to provide an excellent education for every child every day. Teaching and learning is our constant--everything else is a variable. Dr. Zink and Commissioner Johnson will engage participants with brief comments and follow up by addressing your questions and providing answers from each perspective.

9:00-10:30am

Wednesday, August 5th

Virtual Consultation Rooms — Join DEED staff for live question and answer sessions.

Time AK DEED Staff Topic
8:00 - 8:30am Sondra Meredith Teacher Certification
8:30 - 9:00am

Courtney Preziosi

Allie Gardner

ESEA Federal Programs

School Improvement

9:00 - 9:30am

Don Enoch

Colleen Shivers

SPED
9:30 - 10:00am DEED AKSVS Team AKSVS Help Desk
2:00 - 2:30pm Todd Brocious Health/Safety
2:30 - 3:00pm Tim Mearig Facilities
3:00 - 3:30pm Jo Dawson Child Nutrition / Food Service
3:30 - 4:00pm Elwin Blackwell Transportation

For 1:1 consultation, contact DEED directly.

8:00-10:00am
2:00-4:00pm

Thursday, August 6th
Best Practices in Remote Teaching & Learning: What Works in AlaskaPre-pandemic, summer planning for every school year looked and felt much the same. However, back-to-school 2020 is presenting unprecedented challenges and exciting opportunities new to public education. Join us for a showcase of three different approaches to supporting remote learning -- from high-tech to low-tech/no-tech -- including lessons learned and paths forward from three different school districts in Alaska. Breakout rooms will allow for district-to-district sharing, and a large group Q&A will afford opportunities to pose questions related to planning for the coming school year.

9:00-10:30am

#AKconnectED: Networking Opportunities for Alaska’s EducatorsEducators can lead lonely lives, in many ways. Once the classroom door closes, teachers often feel isolated and on their own. Building and district administrators don’t always have colleagues with whom they can problem solve and brainstorm -- especially outside of their own districts. Finding ways to connect and grow as professionals is especially important now, as we face challenges never before encountered. During this fast-paced showcase session, you will learn about four important (and FREE!) resources meant to bring Alaska’s educators together, and walk away with an expanded circle of professional support.

1:00-2:30pm

Monday, August 10th
Creating Future-Focused SchoolsToday’s students need to be prepared for their future. Living in a rapidly evolving global economy, students need to be able to think at higher levels, employ strong literacy and analytical skills, and solve problems in unpredictable situations. There is currently a gap between what students need and what our schools provide. To be prepared for success in today’s increasingly technology-focused and information-based society, ALL students need a rigorous and relevant learning experience. Dr. Daggett and MaryEllen Elia will describe how the nation’s most rapidly improving schools are proactive and create a culture to support, define, implement innovation, and rigorous learning experiences for ALL students to better prepare them for the ever-changing world. 8:00-9:30am


Criterion-Referenced Assessments to Create Personalized Learning Opportunities for All — Using assessments as a tool to identify student strengths and uncover learning gaps has never been more important than it is today. It is expected that when students return, most, if not all, will have significant gaps in their learning due to the impact of COVID 19 closures. Online, criterion-referenced assessments provide the opportunity to build success for all learners – whether learning is happening ONSITE, BLENDED or VIRTUAL. In this session, facilitators will discuss the difference in assessment types and purpose. They will also provide opportunities for small group discussion around shifting the dialogue from utilization of assessments simply as number gathering to utilization of information gathered from the assessments to automatically generate online personalized learning paths for students in reading and math. A scavenger hunt will also be incorporated and ten (10) $25.00 Amazon gift card prizes will be awarded following small group sessions. There will also be a special offer for all Alaska districts related to the platform used to discuss the process outlined above. 10:00-11:30am


Teaching Dr. King’s Social Justice Principles to a Digital Generation — Dr. Daniels and Dr. DeLaughter will present their MLK Educational Initiative, involving both high school and elementary school curricula, based on the nonviolent social justice philosophy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Their MLK curricula have been successfully piloted online in multiple states.

A key component of this initiative is to teach students how recent developments in digital technology have afforded unprecedented opportunities for individuals to make a difference. Students learn how tools ranging from social media, to crowd sourcing and mapping have enabled ordinary people and charities to bring about change in their own neighborhoods and across the globe. These tools connect us with networks of people from around the world.

In this course, timeless principles intermingle with revolutionary technologies, allowing for an intensely relevant discussion of modern ways to achieve change in our world. The course encourages students to follow in the footsteps of Dr. King and become promoters of human rights – at home and around the world.

1:00-2:30pm

Tuesday, August 11th
Covid Communication: What, When, Why, Who and How — This session will focus on how to develop a communication plan that meets the needs of staff and community amidst a changing environment. The content will include the format, content, consistency and delivery of regular proactive communication. 9:00-10:30am

District Plans to Safely Transport StudentsAn open forum with three school districts within the state on their district’s plans for transporting students safely in the fall at different levels of COVID-19 risk. A question and answer section will be provided to share what your district is doing and to ask question of the panelist on what their districts are doing to lessen the risk of exposure to and spread of the COVID-19 virus. 1:00-2:30pm


Wednesday, August 12th

Virtual Consultation Rooms — Join DEED staff for live question and answer sessions.

Time AK DEED Staff Topic
8:00 - 8:30am Sondra Meredith Teacher Certification
8:30 - 9:00am

Courtney Preziosi

Allie Gardner

ESEA Federal Programs

School Improvement

9:00 - 9:30am

Don Enoch

Colleen Shivers

SPED
9:30 - 10:00am DEED AKSVS Team AKSVS Help Desk
2:00 - 2:30pm Todd Brocious Health/Safety
2:30 - 3:00pm Tim Mearig Facilities
3:00 - 3:30pm Jo Dawson Child Nutrition / Food Service
3:30 - 4:00pm Elwin Blackwell Transportation

For 1:1 consultation, contact DEED directly.

8:00-10:00am
2:00-4:00pm

Thursday, August 13th
Best Practices in Remote Teaching and Learning: Educator ShowcasePre-pandemic, summer planning for every school year looked and felt much the same. However, back-to-school 2020 is presenting unprecedented challenges and exciting opportunities new to public education. Join us for a "teacher showcase," highlighting three different examples of ways Alaska teachers approach remote learning to keep students engaged and the learning moving forward, regardless of where students (and teachers!) happen to be located. Our presenters will share examples of "what works" from their own experiences, and will provide ideas for ways to support remote learning during the unpredictable upcoming school year. We will wrap up with a large group Q&A to afford audience members opportunities to think through challenges and solutions as a collective. 9:00-10:30am


Student Engagement: Tools & Strategies ShowcaseDigital tools and resources have been plentiful for years, and most teachers have their tried-and-true favorites for engaging students in meaningful learning. At the same time, some educators have little experience using tech tools for the classroom, and the thought of adding a digital resource to their instructional repertoire is terrifying!  The sudden, pandemic-prompted shift to remote teaching has forced educators to add to their tool kits -- but where should one begin in choosing the right digital tools when there are so many?! This fast-paced session will feature a plethora of Alaska educator-recommended tools and resources to support student engagement in your classroom, no matter where the "classroom" is in a school, at home, or a hybrid. Come prepared with your own student engagement tools and resources to share during the large-group crowd-sourced sharing opportunity at the end of the webinar. 1:00-2:30pm


Building A Professional Network Of Rural Educators from Scratch: The Importance of Organic Collaboration — Rural challenges require rural solutions. The Alaska Rural Educator Network will allow rural teachers to connect with one another for discussion and collaboration. In Edcamp style, the agenda will be created in real-time based on the input of participants gathered at the start of the session. We provide the space, you provide the topics, and the group will provide the wisdom and professional experience to guide us all forward to a stronger start to the school year. 3:30-5:00pm

Monday, August 17th
Waiting to Exhale: Managing Complexity not Chaos — Ken Trump is a national expert and published author in the area of school safety and security as well as emergency preparedness. Join us as Ken shares the findings from his latest doctoral research on the intersection of strategic crisis leadership and risk/crisis communications around safe school issues. Along with his colleague Chuck Hibbert, he will engage participants in a cutting-edge strategy that will help participants reflect on their Smart Start plans and begin refining them under rapidly evolving and uncertain conditions. Additionally, participants will understand the difference between acting in a progressive rather than a reactive way, and how to equip themselves to pivot with their plans on short notice. 10:00-11:30am
Readers and Authors: Creating Virtual Book Clubs Across Alaska — As lifelong readers and leaders, we know the value of reading and learning together at the student level, but rarely do we get the chance to read and learn together as leaders from any segment of the Alaskan community. We are committed to change this by inviting you to join one of three “yet-to-be-formed” book clubs that will include personal interaction with the authors. Bringing Alaskans together with the authors to stretch and challenge our thinking to be forward looking so we can all be better prepared to support our students’ learning is our goal. 1:00-2:30pm

Tuesday, August 18th
Facilities-Related Protocols for School ReopeningA panel of school district Facility Directors will share their planned measures for school opening and its impact on Facilities operations. The panel discussion will be followed by a question and answer session. 9:00-10:30am
Making School Nutrition Work: Waivers and Scenarios — This session is to provide information on the USDA nutrition programs, the waivers available for school year 2020-2021, and the planning process for school nutrition directors to provide healthy meals in various Smart Start strategies. 1:00-2:30pm

Wednesday, August 19th

Virtual Consultation Rooms — Join DEED staff for live question and answer sessions.

Time AK DEED Staff Topic
8:00 - 8:30am Sondra Meredith Teacher Certification
8:30 - 9:00am

Courtney Preziosi

Allie Gardner

ESEA Federal Programs

School Improvement

9:00 - 9:30am

Don Enoch

Colleen Shivers

SPED
9:30 - 10:00am DEED AKSVS Team AKSVS Help Desk
2:00 - 2:30pm Todd Brocious Health/Safety
2:30 - 3:00pm Tim Mearig Facilities
3:00 - 3:30pm Jo Dawson Child Nutrition / Food Service
3:30 - 4:00pm Elwin Blackwell Transportation

For 1:1 consultation, contact DEED directly.

8:00-10:00am
2:00-4:00pm

Upcoming Sessions

Thursday, August 20th
Stronger Together: The Power of Family and School Partnerships — Now more than ever, we have a responsibility and opportunity to partner with families for learning and positive student outcomes. This session provides an overview of the mindset and building blocks needed for productive family partnerships. The session will dedicate discussion time to consider family-school partnership strategies while working in a blended learning environment during this upcoming school year. 3:30-5:00pm
Monday, August 24th
Neurodiversity: Supporting Students Who Learn Differently — What strategies can we use to recognize the unique learning styles of each of our students and how can we design and present lessons that allow them to learn and grow? 3:30-5:00pm

Tuesday, August 25th
A Toolkit for Trauma-Engaged Practice During a PandemicThe session will premiere the just released Transforming Schools: Trauma-Engaged Toolkit and ensure participants are aware of how the toolkit can assist schools both as they restart school during a pandemic as well as advance their longer term goals of becoming fully trauma-engaged learning environments.  The Toolkit is a practical resource-rich companion to Alaska’s nationally acclaimed Transforming Schools: A Framework for Trauma-Engaged Practice in Alaska; created for Alaskans by Alaskans. 9:00-10:30am
Return to Student Activities During COVID-19An open forum to discuss and review the framework for returning to student activities in the fall at different levels of COVID-19 risk. A question and answer session will be available to share what districts are doing and for students, parents, and community members to ask questions. 1:00-2:30pm

Wednesday, August 26th

Virtual Consultation Rooms — Join DEED staff for live question and answer sessions.

Time AK DEED Staff Topic
8:00 - 8:30am Sondra Meredith Teacher Certification
8:30 - 9:00am

Courtney Preziosi

Allie Gardner

ESEA Federal Programs

School Improvement

9:00 - 9:30am

Don Enoch

Colleen Shivers

SPED
9:30 - 10:00am DEED AKSVS Team AKSVS Help Desk
2:00 - 2:30pm Todd Brocious Health/Safety
2:30 - 3:00pm Tim Mearig Facilities
3:00 - 3:30pm Jo Dawson Child Nutrition / Food Service
3:30 - 4:00pm Isaac Paulson Assessments

For 1:1 consultation, contact DEED directly.

8:00-10:00am
2:00-4:00pm

Thursday, August 27th
Stronger Together: Linking Learning to Family, Community and Place — Parents and family members are often a child’s first teacher. However, most families often have less of a defined role in formal learning. There is an opportunity during Covid-19 for families and schools to redefine roles and opportunities. Families can not usually take on the role of teacher, but can be a great support to ignite and reinforce learning. Participants will have an opportunity to discuss how educators and school staff incorporate these principles into their practice? 3:30-5:00pm