Bob Eichorn: 4.08 I liked the comment about how we should utilize our school counselors to benefit students. Would like to have heard more “earthshaking” news. Feel that the overall message was not as impactful as it could have been; believe the time constraint hindered that. I appreciate the useful information and ideas. Needed more time; too fast. Very informative and practical. Really enjoyed his speech. Impressive data – I like what he stated about supporting staff, selling school to community, it’s a business and customer service is important. Very excited to look on website and learn more! Thank you for sharing your processes and the data to support that it works. Great ideas – very inspirational with many ideas for implementation. Would have loved less statistics for his school and more information on practices. Good information; real advocate for alternative education. Would like to hear more specific details. Would have liked to hear more of how he handles discipline issues. Loved everything he had to say. Great information; great to hear practices. Perhaps more details about relationship building with community organizations that will supplement school experiences. Good, concrete information regarding implementation. Powerful; great tips; wish he had more time to share; would love to visit his school. Good ideas brought to the table; not sure how to incorporate into my small alternative setting. Required electronic portfolio for all students. I appreciated his passion for alternative educational students. Great delivery. He has the idea: 3 counselors, 1 AP, budget to pay teachers for after hours – he lives in a major money area (suburbs of Washington). Needed more time to cover specifics. Very informative. Very good presentation with great information on how to improve community investment in alternative schools. Looking forward to hearing more in Atlanta. Loved sense of humor! How important your vision and mission statement drive the success of your school. Good to hear from another state alternative principal. Great sense of humor. Great speaker! Very interesting. Very helpful.
Jennifer Preston et.al.: 3.97 Very good to have these conversations, to hear directly from DPI and for them to hear from us, although not sure they are listening. I’m glad the state is thinking of alternative teachers. Did a great job taking so many questions. Very informative and practical. Needed to have more precise information on attendance. Talked too fast! She had no idea that alternative education means we need alternative rules and standards. Made things clearer and brought up excellent questions. Cool under fire; very professional. I was expecting to hear about how to have alternative students excel in Common Core and Essential standards, not about Standard 6; however it was still informational. Good give & take, hope DPI listens. Very descriptive about standard 6. Most important session of conference. I thoroughly appreciated hearing that DPI understands alternative schools need a different growth model. Helpful knowledge regarding standard 6. Gave great points of info; very knowledgeable; handled some very difficult questions with poise and tact; very honest. Difficult topic speaking of standard 6. Jennifer gave good examples on understanding standard 6. I appreciate that someone at DPI hears us and welcomes our input in the evaluation of standard 6. Good speaker; knowledgeable. Spurred good discussion. Answered several questions. Lots of relevant information – very helpful. The information was important but still a lot of unanswered questions. Did a great job with the information she had – unfortunately not all of the questions are answerable at this time. Excellent and valuable information. She was honest at least about not understanding alternative; maybe we need to quit worrying about what anyone (DPI) doesn’t know; they will learn we are here for all the right reasons when we overcome. Great job. Great information/explanation of standard VI. Needs to work with alternative ed. I thoroughly appreciated hearing that DPI understands alternative schools need a different growth model.
Sam Redding: 3.63 He did not speak to school improvement but to self -improvement. Very good stories that made me think, feel, act!! Needed to cover some of hand out. Did not really understand what the point of his presentation was in relation to school improvement. I enjoyed his personal story of the first day of school. Very enjoyable! Great stories. Didn’t get much info about improvement I could take home. The presentation was story oriented and didn’t include applicable points. Great stories to relate to school improvement. Customer service is important! That’s how I think of it. Very nice stories and activity! I appreciated the engaging and non-traditional presentation, storytelling and anecdotes. This was not helpful at all. Great stories, but would have liked more practical info. Great motivation for anyone working in an alternative setting. I hope I receive a handout. Nothing was said that I haven’t experienced. Wish he had more time to speak; would have liked to hear more about his best practices. Need more information about SIP. We all need to be reminded about seeing school environment through a child’s eyes. Enjoyed what he had to say; made me think. Have no idea what his school improvement was. No points made toward school improvement. Enjoyed the “through the student’s eyes.” Would have loved to hear some of his points on school improvement. Made the point for a need for school improvement. Want more on school improvement. Too many short stories. I felt that he was disrespectful in referring to Dr. Johnson-Green as “Gwen.” I also expected more information than stories; he did make a good point about seeing things through students’ eyes. Good stuff! Didn’t get the point. Somewhat off topic, but overall easy to listen to. The presentation was very valid and moving. Wanted to hear more details about the school improvement component. Helpful to help us refocus on the individual student. Did not give us very much information but this is what we do. Mad a valid point about seeing school improvement through the student’s eyes. Great stories. Good stories. I felt he was preaching to the choir.
Chris Vecchione: 4.85 Excellent video at the beginning of his presentation. The best part of the conference. Excellent presentation. Gave me ideas I can actually use. A good note to end on, to leave us thinking about. Fabulous, great ideas that we can use immediately. Worth waiting for!!! Good presentation, lots of good ideas. Loved the visuals. Tangible solutions for things we want to do in our building/program. Excellent; enjoyed every moment; a lot of useful info. Excellent best practices that are applicable to what we do. PowerPoint was GREAT! Personal stories are the best; I was able to relate more to his presentation. Thank you for the artifacts to show us what it could look like. Very interesting!! Excellent information! Loved every minute of it! Excellent presentation, good ideas for instilling school pride and getting your story out to the public. Excellent model for alternative ed school. Awesome. Love the videos – great ideas! Great ideas brought into reality. Great job! Thanks for sharing common experiences. Good visuals! Great points and very relevant. Hit home with a lot of practices. Needs to be keynote speaker. Very useful and practical. OMG – inspired; planning a visit! Exceptional presentation. Energetic, motivational, lots of realistic ideas to use at all schools. I appreciated his passion for his school; I enjoyed his celebration of his students’ achievements and their potential. Wonderful presentation, puts a lot of preparation and effort. Bravo! Awesome and practical. Great way to end; gave us lots to take back with us. Excellent presenter; great ideas. Wonderful presentation; we have been implementing many of the practices he spoke about – affirmation! Wow! Excellent! Real life! Outstanding. Very good points and examples you can use. He does have a lot of great energy; a great way to end the conference. Great stories; great practical advice; I loved the video examples. Excellent; very motivational. Outstanding – great ideas!
Vendors: 3.79 Great vendors. Triumph Learning was awesome!! Thank you for the range of vendors (character ed and academic). Would like to see more vendors. Didn’t visit the vendors; the hallway was too crowded.
Organization: 4.09 Great. Send out information about conference (place, etc.). I would have liked the topics ahead of time. Would have liked a little more upfront info; we didn’t know the time or agenda. Great timelines with on-time sessions. Flyers needed more info on time and facility. Flyer did not tell us where to go. We had a hard time figuring out what time even started and exact location. I appreciated the adherence to time. A little trouble finding the building. Location of conference unclear; maps sent to participants prior to conference.
Facilities: 4.30 Internet connection was an issue. It would have been nice to have internet connection to check emails. Beautiful campus for the conference. Audio glitches. No Internet access for personal devices. It would have been nice to be at tables. Great. Small for amount of people who came. Need wifi passwords! Great facilities. Awesome facility; very beautiful. Location was not easy to find once on campus. Room was hot and crowded; there was not enough room. Very nice; a little tight. Great but needed lunch room.
Lunch: 3.46 Need variety. No gluten free options. OK. Lots of mayo in all. Tasty but could you consider alternate options for dietary needs. Nice, but would have liked more vegetarian food. Too much mayo! Also need more bottle water or pitchers of ice water. Speaker was great; would have liked more time with others to speak about ideas. Vegan option would have been nice. More variety would have been great (if was difficult with dietary restrictions). It was hard to eat in our seats in the conference room. I appreciate the food, but there was a ton of mayo in the chicken salad and pasta salad – it was an odd combination. Choices would be good. Heavy on mayo. Very good. Not my favorite; needed choice or several selections.
Most helpful: The last 2 speakers were outstanding. Dr. V and his staff. Last session. Henderson Independent HS – outstanding. Was very good; everything was like clockwork. Dr. Veccione’s presentation. Dr. Redding spoke from the heart. Dr. Veccione did a great job encouraging us. Hearing positive comments about what we do on a daily basis. Standard 6 talk. Speakers who shared information that was applicable to our practice. School Improvement classroom models. The vendors were great resources for educators. Final presentation. The DPI Q & A was helpful. The Best Practices in Alternative Education was informative. Dr. Eichorn is truly an inspirational leader and thinker for alternative education; I want to go back to my school and change lives. All the ideas, exchange of information and most of all knowing we are not alone in the issues we face as alternative education; while we may not have all the answers, that still helps. Networking with other alternative school colleagues. Information about scheduling and planning. Details related to common core. Positive attitudes. Chris Vecchione. The latter part with Henderson HIS. All of the information was relevant and easily implemented. Real life examples and info; very time conscientious; stuck to schedule; yes! All of it. Liked the enthusiasm and ideas brought forth by Dr. Vecchione. Info on standard 6. Lots of information was shared. The conversation with the individuals from DPI & the knowledge that the association is a voice for us in our state; it is good to see our concerns addressed. I loved the best practices presentation – wonderful and inspiring! The last speaker’s strategies and ideas. Shared success stories. Networking. The last presentation was awesome. Session with Jen DeNeal, conference with vendor. The speakers were informational and great overall. Mr. Eichorn, Mr. Redding and Vecchioni presentations were inspiring and motivational. Hearing from those who actually work with alt ed kids. Variety of speakers. Dr. Chris’s presentation. All the speakers had a great message. Getting our message out. NCEDUC8R motivation video. Hearing success stories. Great professional networking. Networking. Vendors and speakers on improving education in an alternative setting. Jennifer Preston on Standard 6. Common Core speaker and National President. The topics. Henderson High examples. Breaks. Best practices I could use in my school. DPI information about growth models. The “Best Practices” session was great.
Like Changed: Discussion on policy and changing policy for alternative education. How can we make THE difference for our students? More time to collaborate with others, perhaps seated in groups instead of lecture-style seating. Examples of programs that work. Continue to share best practice schools. It was very difficult to hear everyone at times. Water for sale. Breakout sessions. Small group settings about specific topics. More strategies and resources. Location – move to Winston-Salem State University (Dr. Johnson-Green’s alma mater and mine). Rotate rooms for different presenters; allow teachers to choose what information we need to know more about. More sharing with actual schools and teachers as groups. Could future professional development address communication and support of students whose residence is a group home? I would like the opportunity to talk with others in the room. Create a live binder or other platform to upload/share examples, artifacts, documents and videos. The small group set-up in Greensboro last year with more conference selection was more effective than this year. Too few choices for participants. Some presenters were easy to understand and others hard to hear in the back of the room. Maybe more links offered to observe and learn about models in place. Clear details of time, place, etc. Allow time to network – rotate the groups – we need to share each other’s ideas. More information on location. Breakout sessions with more topics. Individual sessions to hear what other districts are finding successful. Add an additional speaker; keep the presentations to 30” at most. Less cramped and cooler space. Chance to collaborate; need to share strategies. Timing between speakers to be a little tighter. Better speakers. Choose speakers that are motivated and energetic. More, more, more. Info in advance; longer conference – maybe two days? Provide maps of location with ad or other means to assist in locating venue. Possible location change. Breakout sessions with varieties of presentations. Have break out session where principals are able to speak about issues. More best practices and strategy session; maybe breakouts and brainstorming. Different tracks for different types of attendees: administrators and teachers. Make it two days like it used to be. Being able to sit at tables. Area to eat. Send out an agenda before conference and let us know if we will have lunch or not and what the options are. Setting needs to have tables. Maybe expand to multiple session, choices, best practice sharing. Larger space. No enough time to collaborate with various schools and programs. Some breakout sessions. Bigger room. Brochure/agenda prior to conference. Small group workshops with a chance to meet/network with other professionals in the field. Breakout sessions. Start earlier and end earlier. A better variety in speakers. Spread it out. I found it very difficult to locate the venue; I kind of found it by accident. Locate the conference at the hotel we can stay overnight at.
Other comments: “Dr. Johnson-Green is a tremendous asset to alternative education in NC. I honestly appreciate her willingness to listen and explore ‘out of the box’ possibilities for alternative ed.” “Would love to be hearing more from NCAAE about what the association is doing. Would also like to see our association, not just the board, presenting a united voice to DPI for our students.” “Good conference.” “Great job!” “Great conference.” “I would have liked to have been able to stay for entire conference. Great information, great contacts, great references to be obtained from this conference.” “I like the idea of ‘The Models that Work’ for small alternative learning programs.” “Great conference, keep up the good work.” “Overall, great job! Enjoyed coming! Thank you!” “Thank you to the presenters that appreciated the work of their staff.” “Excellent conference.” “Thank you that there is a voice for us.” “Miss the two day conference we used to have at the Friday Center for principals.” “It would be nice to allow some extra time for collaboration/networking with other ALP educators.” “The speakers were great and I enjoyed the experiences and opinions of other alternative school educators. It would have been more pleasant at a location with more room and signs to make it easier to find. It was upstairs and there were not any signs to point the way.” “Awesome day! Thank you for your efforts!” “Great conference.” “Thank you for having this conference.” “Enjoyed it.” “Exceeded my expectations! I really enjoyed myself!”