Massachusetts Elementary School Principals' Association
MESPA Monday Memo
February 27, 2017
From the Executive Director:
Spring Is Coming:
Why You Should Attend the Spring Conference
Be Inspired
We all need inspiration that feeds our souls. Thursday’s keynote, Todd Nesloney,  will inspire you. Todd is a current principal in a high-poverty school in Texas and author of Kids Deserve It!  He will remind you why you do the work you do (and your registration includes a complimentary copy of his book).  Want to get an idea of who he is, check out this 5 minute video discussing What’s Your Message?, a chapter from his book:   or check out the archive of the weekly KDI podcasts online at  

Stay Current & Have a Voice
In speaking recently with Wednesday’s keynote speaker, Kelly Pollitt from NAESP, I was reminded why we had asked her to speak.. I know that the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) may not be the most inspiring of topics, but if anyone can inspire you around ESSA, Kelly will.  She will bring ESSA to the local level, speaking specifically about the role principals can and should play as districts develop required plans under ESSA.  Kelly will offer suggestions for how principals can influence their district plans, including introducing you to a new Principals’ Action Plan kit filled with links to varioious resources:  Kelly is a strong advocate for principals in Washington. Come hear why.     

Feel Supported In Your Work
Psychologist and author Rob Evans “gets” principals better than anyone I know who has never been a principal.  He also understands the “human side” and real work of change.  On Friday,  Rob will talk about issues of leading change from a human perspective. Principals who have heard Rob in the past find his sessions to be thoughtful - and therapeutic.  

Learn from Colleagues
Check out the list of 21 offerings ( Concurrent Session Titles & Presenters) provided by principals & assistant principals (11),  principal-teacher teams (5), consultants (4), and an attorney.  Offerings address a variety of areas including: leadership, social emotional learning, interventions, UDL, PBL, technology, and legal issues.  

Connect with Colleagues
Take the opportunity to “get off your island” and connect with others who do the work that you do. We hope you will join us for what promises to be three days of powerful professional learning, as well as a welcome opportunity to network with colleagues.  
Rick Rogers
3 Weeks To Go!
MESPA Spring Conference: Leading Innovation & Change
For details or to register on-line , go to:  Spring Registration 
March 22-24, 2017
Devens Common Center
3 Keynote Speakers
21 Concurrent Sessions

We hope you will join us for what promises to be three days of powerful professional learning, as well as a welcome opportunity to network with colleagues.     

Click flyer to enlarge & print registration form. 
From The MESPA Blog:
Kindness, Generosity and Caring: Building Blocks for Success
by Marc Smith, Principal, Forestdale School, Sandwich, MA
I In this week’s post, Marc writes about his work with staff to create a school community in a newly reorganized PK-2 school.   He describes his realization that “ I had been prioritizing the wrong thing.  We would never be an academically successful school, if we did not first make learning fun, did not care deeply about our students and did not build a strong family culture within our school.”  He goes on to describe how various acts of kindness and generosity initiated by his staff helped to foster a culture of caring at Foresdale School.  

Join our Next Twitter Chat #Mespachat
Wednesday, March 8
8:00-9:00 pm EST
Guest Moderators:
Rebecca Cote & Rick Jetter
Authors of:
"Escaping the School Leader's Dunk Tank:
How to Prevail When Others Want to See You Drown
New Job Postings
Springfield Public Schools: Principal & Assistant Principal Openings

For details & other postings,  go to:
New Elementary Principals’ Science Network
Elementary principals interested in improving student access to high quality science instruction in the early grades, especially those with a background in science, are encouraged to join a new Elementary Principals’ Science Network. The network is a collaboration between the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and MESPA.  

Click on the link for details.
Applications are due March 15.
Massachusetts ESSA Plan
Public Comment Closes March 9
As is noted above, the Massachusetts draft plan required under the new federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is available for public comment through March 9. Go to: Mass. DESE ESSA Plan for more information (Three documents are available for your review: the Full Plan, an Executive Summary, or a two-pager with Highlights.)     

Kelly Pollitt from NAESP will speak at our Spring Conference about actions principals should take at the district level.  
Apply to be an Ed Prep Reviewer
This is an important initiative in Massachusetts and an opportunity for you to gain for you to gain insights about educator preparation and the review process.   

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE) is currently accepting applications for the 2017-2018 cohort of Ed Prep reviewers. Reviewers are responsible for reviewing, analyzing, and evaluating evidence of educator preparation program effectiveness. Together with ESE, reviewers help to guarantee that educator preparation in MA results in effective educators ready to support the success of all students. Past reviewers have described the opportunity as a great learning experience:  
This is an exciting and selective opportunity to:
  • Engage in a meaningful professional learning opportunity and earn PD points
  • Sharpen your knowledge of educator preparation programs in Massachusetts
  • Participate in shaping an evaluation process that impacts the readiness of our educators to deliver quality instruction both statewide and nationally 
  • Collaborate with diverse education leaders and professionals
Apply Now!
Deadline is midnight Sunday, March 5th.
Get the application, read the FAQ and see the flyer here.
Workshop: Tuesday, March 14, 2017
@ Memorial School, Natick
Teachers can register at the membership rate if principal is a MESPA member.
Discounts for teams of 3 or more from same school.