5 reasons you won’t want to miss Summit
October 5, 2020
2. Crucial PD topics
A media library on the online platform will give registered attendees access to more professional learning content than they could see during an in-person event. There will be more than 35 pre-recorded sessions available on-demand all week on topics such as “Using Technology Coaches to Close the Teacher Tech Gap” and “iPrincipal: The Challenges and Leadership Practices of Virtual School Principals.” Sessions were carefully selected with the current needs of educators in mind. Topic areas include:
  • Crisis Response & Communication
  • Distance Learning/Technology/Digital Divide
  • Equity
  • Leadership
  • Mental Health
Whether attendees want to gain cultural proficiency practices, improve parent engagement, or respond to student trauma, attendees will be able to obtain important strategies for success in today’s school environment.
3. Inspiring keynotes
Leadership Summit will feature three nationally recognized speakers who will deliver inspiring keynote addresses.  On Thursday, attendees will hear from author and child safety advocate Elizabeth Smart, who survived a highly publicized child abduction in 2002. She will share her journey of overcoming trauma and finding the strength to reclaim her life. Today, she works to protect women and children from human trafficking through her nonprofit, the Elizabeth Smart Foundation. On Friday morning, attendees will get a jolt of natural energy from Hamish Brewer, the tattooed, skateboarding principal from Virginia who is disrupting educational norms. Under his leadership, his elementary school was recognized as a Nationally Distinguished Title 1 School. Brewer recently published a book titled “Relentless” and works to improve other campuses as a school improvement specialist.  To close out the conference, attendees will hear the story of Donna Porter and DJ Batiste, a teacher and her former student whose life she transformed. Batiste was a high school gang leader who had only received negative attention for his behavior. But when he walked into Porter’s classroom, he found the positive attention he craved. In 2012, Batiste nominated Porter for a Kennedy Center teaching award. Today, they are sought-after speakers on the power of conscious discipline.
4. Champion selfies
This year’s event is guided by the theme “ACSA Leaders: Champions for Every Child,” which was selected at the start of the pandemic. “When we came up with this theme, we believed it to be true. But now more than ever, our skills are being challenged and we still fight for our children to give them the high education they deserve,” said planning committee member Terri Rufert. ACSA members have the opportunity to share what they are a champion for by creating a “Champion Selfie.” Members can snap a photo of themselves with their Champion sign and share on social media. Download the printable sign at
and share by tagging @acsa_info or #ACSASummit, or by submitting using the Google form at
5. Celebrate excellence
One of the purposes of Leadership Summit is to celebrate the profession with the 2020 Administrators of the Year  and Special Awards recognition event at 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 6. No Summit registration is needed for this virtual event — anyone who would like can watch live.

ACSA will also celebrate students who have overcome the odds during the Every Student Succeeding recognition event at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 5. Hear from students in each ACSA region and two adult education students who faced homelessness, abuse, health struggles and mental health challenges with the help of caring adults in their schools. Anyone can congratulate the winners during these live, public broadcasts on
It’s safe to say, ACSA’s 2020 Leadership Summit will be an event like none other. For the first time in its history, ACSA’s premier professional development conference will be held as an online virtual event Nov. 5-6, 2020. After thoughtful consideration, the Leadership Summit Planning Committee pivoted to this format out of concern for attendees’ health and safety during the coronavirus pandemic. Attendees will now be able to enjoy the same professional development sessions, inspiring keynotes, and networking opportunities from the comfort and safety of their home or office. “While we will certainly miss the gathering of our education community in person, we believe that this is the best approach for the well-being and comfort of our audience,” said planning committee member Steve Hovey. Here are just a few of the reasons this will be a must-see conference for educational leaders.
1. The engaging platform
After doing extensive research, ACSA selected a virtual events platform that will allow hundreds of attendees to watch live and prerecorded sessions using a single, easy-to-use interface.  “The virtual system we will use has dynamic working and exhibiting features,” said planning committee member Michelle Wavering. “It includes a multitude of exposure opportunities for networking and provides the ability to connect from the comfort of your own home or office, either live or on your own time.” During live sessions on Nov. 5 and 6, attendees will have opportunities to discuss vital topics using the platform’s interactive polling and Q&A features. When they aren’t in featured or keynote sessions, attendees can pop into breakout rooms for live speaker Q&As, ACSA Committees and Councils table talks, or catch up with colleagues using the chat feature.  Attendees will also get to experience live special events, interviews and more at a virtual stage featuring more than 20 hours of live coverage.  Each aspect of this event has been reimagined for an online environment, from coffee breaks to virtual exhibitor booths and even the conference swag that will be delivered to attendees. 
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Association of California School Administrators
Association of California School Administrators