93 episodes

NAIS Member Voices focuses on the hard-working individuals that make up the independent school community. Each episode will feature a discussion with a different staff member at an NAIS member school about his or her role, challenges, successes, inspiration sources, and more. For more information about NAIS or any of the resources discussed, visit www.nais.org or contact us at membership@nais.org.

Member Voices audio podcast by NAIS

    • Education
    • 4.9 • 19 Ratings

NAIS Member Voices focuses on the hard-working individuals that make up the independent school community. Each episode will feature a discussion with a different staff member at an NAIS member school about his or her role, challenges, successes, inspiration sources, and more. For more information about NAIS or any of the resources discussed, visit www.nais.org or contact us at membership@nais.org.

    Limiting Employee Turnover with Will Crissman, Tenacre Country Day School

    Limiting Employee Turnover with Will Crissman, Tenacre Country Day School

    Tenacre Country Day School (MA), where Will Crissman is the head, has had almost no employee turnover the past few years. We talk about his approach to retention (and recruitment) during a time when many schools are struggling in this area. We also discuss Will’s approach to leadership – including keeping a steady emotional state, not asking people to do things he wouldn’t do himself, and having fun!

    You can find some related NAIS resources from this episode by visiting nais.org/membervoices.

    • 40 min
    Facilitating Classroom Conversations Around the Election

    Facilitating Classroom Conversations Around the Election

    Charlie Grossman, History Teacher, and Mary Gentry, Math Teacher, at Breck School (MN) discuss how to facilitate civil discourse in the classroom and how to address polarization with the impending election. They detail how they created and navigated a course around the general election in 2016, lessons learned, and what the course might look like this year. Mary and Charlie also share how they focus on connection before content in the classroom and try to create a “brave space” for their students. Ultimately, our conversation ends on an uplifting note - with the two educators focusing on how their students and colleagues inspire them, and how this time of polarization creates an opportunity for independent schools to shine.

    You can find some related NAIS resources from this episode by visiting nais.org/membervoices.

    • 41 min
    Achieving Inclusivity in Polarizing Times

    Achieving Inclusivity in Polarizing Times

    Arvind Grover, head of school at the Meadowbrook School (MA) shares how his school strives for inclusivity in a polarized world. He stresses the importance of actively assessing your school’s progress, putting support structures in place, and stopping to ask “is there an opportunity here?”. We also discuss staff retention strategies - like the importance of creating opportunities for faculty growth and making new hires feel like they’re ahead of the curve. Finally, Arvind shares how being a head has given him perspective, and why, despite everything, he still jumps out of bed every morning.

    You can find some related NAIS resources from this episode by visiting nais.org/membervoices.

    • 37 min
    The Conversation: Navigating a Head Transition

    The Conversation: Navigating a Head Transition

    Ariane Baer-Harper, head of school at Austin International School (TX) speaks with Jacques Weber, head of the Dallas International School (TX) who was the outgoing head at Austin International when she started. The two were able to work together for the last three months of the 2022–2023 school year, and their collaboration has continued to this day. Here, Baer-Harper and Weber discuss their successful head transition, the keys to its success, and a roadmap for other heads to consider. This conversation was published in the Winter 2024 issue of Independent School magazine.

    You can find some related NAIS resources from this episode by visiting nais.org/membervoices.

    • 20 min
    The Conversation: Coping With Tragedy

    The Conversation: Coping With Tragedy

    Two colleagues at St. Mary’s Episcopal School (TN) - Head of School Albert Throckmorton and Director of Communications Jennifer Parris – talk about what they’ve learned about community and a school’s purpose following a tragedy. This conversation was published in the Fall 2023 issue of Independent School magazine.

    You can find some related NAIS resources from this episode by visiting nais.org/membervoices.

    • 33 min
    Working Through Anxiety with Jennifer Dirga, The Chestnut Hill School

    Working Through Anxiety with Jennifer Dirga, The Chestnut Hill School

    Jennifer Dirga, School Counselor at The Chestnut Hill School (MA) speaks to the importance of fostering connections inside and outside the classroom to decrease stress and anxiety in students. In this conversation with Jackie Wolking, she shares examples for how to build community and how to create safe and affirming spaces. Jennifer takes an active role in the classroom and advocates for mental health supports for staff. She’s a proponent of going slow, pausing, and reflecting more throughout life.

    You can find some related NAIS resources from this episode by visiting nais.org/membervoices.

    • 35 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
19 Ratings

19 Ratings

Malotke-Meslin ,

Wonderful Guests

It’s great to hear from professionals in their various leadership roles at independent schools. The guests balance thoughtful storytelling with strategic advice.

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