Monday, April 27, 2009

National Leadership Conference Preview

Spring meetings are coming to an end and students are deciding whether or not to attend National Leadership Conference in Nashville, TN. In looking at the schedule this year, you’ll notice a few changes.

First, we have responded to adviser concerns of high hotel bills and shortened the conference by one day. However, we have packed all the regular activities and plenty of learning opportunities into the week.

Advisers have multiple opportunities for professional development. On Monday Adviser-to-Adviser is being offered for teachers chosen to represent their states. Additionally those who have been enrolled in Adviser Academy have special sessions on Monday.

Tuesday adviser professional development sessions will take place and cover a range of topics including integrating core academics, using STAR Events in the classroom, teaching Generation Y and more! Each session will be offered three times for maximum opportunities for attendance.

Wednesday advisers will be recognized at the Adviser Recognition Session (formerly the Adult General Assembly). All advisers are encouraged to attend to support fellow teachers in their hard work. Additionally, advisers will elect a representative to the FCCLA Board of Directors. After the recognition Phil Lempert, Supermarket Guru, will address advisers as the session keynote speaker.

There are many opportunities for involvement and professional development at NLC. Don’t forget to contact the national office if you’d like to earn Continuing Education Units for your time. Please review the schedule carefully as you plan for your NLC experience.

We look forward to welcoming you to Nashville!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Recognizing to Retain

As teachers and advisers there may be no better reward than seeing students shine in STAR Events, offices, and other leadership roles. Students who automatically jump into these projects are easily recognized at chapter, state and national levels, but often there are members who need to be pushed a little more to engage in chapter activities. It can be difficult to find ways to recognize and encourage these students in order to keep their membership.

One way to keep encouraging students is to set each member up with an upperclassman mentor. They can go to that older member with questions, concerns, or for brainstorming. They are encouraged by their peers and less likely to be intimidated by older members or long term projects.

What do you do to encourage the younger or less experienced members to become engaged in your chapter?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Remaining Relevant: Business & Industry

Chapter success is often dependent on groups outside of the classroom. Business and industry leaders are one of the outside groups that can positively impact programs. By involving professionals in the community, students are able to apply the skills they’ve learned in the classroom in a meaningful way.

Interaction through classroom lectures and site visits encourages students to continue advancing their skills. Business and industry supporters can talk to classes about trends, provide sites for job shadowing, evaluate class projects and STAR Events, and in some cases these groups may fund field trips or travel to district, state, or national meetings.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Remaining Relevant: Paying Attention to Public Policy

Over the last few weeks we’ve discussed several things advisers can to do increase awareness and develop long lasting relationships to enhance their FCCLA program. These local or state level activities are some of the most important you can do to sustain a successful program. However, this week we are focusing on public policy—something most advisers tell me they don’t have much experience with.

You may have noticed that the national headquarters has begun offering information on policy to advisers through our monthly communications, publications, and even this blog. We want to encourage advisers to use their voice to influence policymakers. For example, last week’s blog was a call to action from the Association of Career and Technical Education (ACTE) asking teachers to sign a petition to increase Perkins funding. These issues are important to maintaining programs that effect all around student success.

When legislators are writing policy they are best influenced by those that have a story to tell. Who better to tell the story of CTE and FACS than FCCLA advisers? Making an impact isn’t difficult, it isn’t time consuming. It only takes a quick phone call, email, or visit and can be done anytime of the year. Without your story, the voice of FCCLA is silent.