A core commitment of NCAIS is to offer relevant and intentional professional development opportunities to NCAIS constituents. We have a variety of single-day workshops and multi-day conferences, found below. In addition, we have ongoing professional development opportunities, including monthly cohort virtual meetings, our Teacher-to-Teacher program, and our Women in Leadership collaboration. They can be found at the link below

Ongoing Professional Development Opportunities

Because of the strong support of our sponsors and exhibitors, we are able to offer affordable professional development opportunities to our schools. We encourage you to review our sponsor directory and support those organizations as they have supported our community. For those representing organizations with services and products that would benefit our schools, we encourage you to visit the link below:

Sponsor and Exhibitor Opportunities

 Conferences | Virtual Meetings | Webinars 

Begins October 13, 2020 |  Educators Conference 
How do educators create learners who can communicate effectively, think critically and creatively, collaborate with their peers, and contribute while simultaneously addressing alarming levels of student anxiety? Join your NCAIS colleagues and keynote speaker Dr. Shimi Kang; award-winning, Harvard-trained psychiatrist, neuroscience researcher, and bestselling author, on Tuesday, October 13, 2020 at 7:00pm to explore, share, and learn together as we enter a new decade in Independent School education.
Recorded breakout sessions will include 20-minute Impact sessions featuring a new tool, strategy or nugget, and 60-minute traditional sessions that will allow more time for exploration and discussion.

November 6 &13, December 2 | Cyber Safety Workshop
Making our schools safe from cyber attacks and identity theft is a high priority for school leaders, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only increased cyber safety concerns. This 6-hour workshop over 2 consecutive Fridays provides a framework for building a cyber safety team and practical steps to build a culture of cyber awareness and safe practices for independent schools. The workshop draws on advice from technology professionals, includes hands-on activities to jumpstart cyber safety efforts, and offers a follow-up webinar with industry resources to answer your most critical questions.
 November 5, 12 & 19, 2020 | College Counselors Conference
COVID has served as an accelerant and agent of change across our country and world and no sector has felt the impact more than higher ed. As both college counselors and college admissions offices scramble to pivot to new models and implement policies that best serve students, it is important to engage in authentic conversations about the present and future.  NCAIS invites you to join fellow counselors from across NC and college admission experts as we engage in important dialogue about the future of college admissions. 
Confirmed speakers include: Ethan Sawyer, College Essay Guy, Angel Perez, President of NACAC, Todd Reinhart, Vice Chancellor for Enrollment, University of Denver, and President Elect of NACAC, Jed Applerouth, Founder and President, Applerouth Tutoring, David Galinas, retired Senior Associate Dean and Director of Financial Aid at Davidson College. This fully virtual event will be hosted on consecutive Thursday afternoons in November - the 5th and 12th from 1:00-3:30 - followed by a robust discussion at the monthly Zoom Cohort meeting on the 19th at 1 pm- College Applications Case Studies for Counselors. 

November 13, 2020 | Advancement Conference 
2020 has been a year for the history books. The educational landscape has shifted dramatically. Many of our schools are seeing record enrollment in the wake of COVID-19 and the hard work of retaining those families for the long term is just beginning. Other schools have seen declines as the competition for students is stronger than ever. Join us to hear from nationally renowned presenters, North Carolina thought leaders, and NCAIS colleagues for a deep dive into best practices and new ideas surrounding admissions, marketing, and advancement in independent schools.
Confirmed speakers include: 
Jane Hulbert, The Jane Group
Heather Hoerle, Enrollment Management Association
Lorrie Jackson, FinalSite

**Sessions will be recorded for those registered to view at a later time if they are unable to attend the live event.

December 2, 2020 | Academic Leadership Conference 
10:00-11:30 & 1:30-3:00
Academic Leadership During Hybrid Learning
Whether at a distance or in person, the central tenants of good leadership hold true. In Spring 2020, teachers and academic leaders pivoted to crisis-driven Distance Learning and met the immediate need to finish the school year during a pandemic. Months later, we are in the midst of a year of hybrid learning with uncertainty about when or if school will ever look the same as it did prior to COVID-19. How can you ensure that the program is engaging and effective for kids? How can academic administrators be effective instructional leaders while at a physical distance from their teachers? This workshop will review the research-informed best practices, and prepare administrators to lead and support teaching faculty in delivering a high quality learning experience, whether on the school campus or via distance learning.

January 13-15, 2021 | Heads, Trustees, & CFO's Conference 
Join fellow Heads of School, Trustees, and CFO's as we immerse ourselves in a wide range of relevant topics and engage in rich and intentional conversations about the challenges and opportunities facing independent school education in North Carolina and beyond. The 2021 Heads, Trustees, & CFO's Conference will be delivered in a virtual format, affording us the privilege to learn and collaborate from our homes, offices, and schools. Our lineup includes guest speakers John Littleford and Mike Cobb, as well as voices from our own NCAIS schools.
We encourage participants to gather together safely in your boardrooms, if you are able, to listen and learn together. There will be whole-group presentations as well as breakout sessions.
February 5, 2021 | Diversity & Inclusion Conference (Student Track & Faculty Track) **new date**
2020 has been a year for the history books for numerous reasons, with civil rights, social justice, and protests at the forefront. For the first time, the NCAIS Diversity and Inclusion Conference will include a full-day track for high school students interested in exploring diversity, equity, and inclusion with fellow NCAIS students from across the state. Sessions will include blended opportunities for faculty and students, as well as sessions tailored specifically to each group. 
Our morning keynote speaker is North Carolina’s 9th Poet Laureate, Jaki Shelton Green. Wake Forest Baseball Coach Tom Walters and former Wake Forest Baseball player Kevin Jordan are our afternoon keynote speakers who together will share their story. They share a unique bond built on selflessness and a passion for baseball. 
To be agile and able to pivot, schools with a culture based in trust and collaboration are those where the best ideas emerge. Inclusive colleagues foster compassion, kindness, and curiosity throughout their school community. Join us as we explore ways to work together, encourage people to listen more to each other, and to be more aware of how each person’s perspective adds value to the collective conversation. 

 February 11, 2021 | Early Childhood Conference 

 March 5, 2021 | Business Office Conference 

March 26, 2021 | Neurodiversity Conference 

June 21-23, 2021 | Summer Heads Retreat |  Wild Dunes Resort, Isle of Palms, SC

Imagine a warm, breezy beach locale where you are surrounded (in-person) by family and colleagues! We have to believe that those days will return and we’re betting on June 2021!

Please join NCAIS as we “reunite” at Wild Dunes Resort, Isle of Palms, SC with NCAIS families and South Carolina independent school colleagues. By then, you will have endured one of the most challenging years of your career… a pandemic, historic presidential election, turbulent social unrest and gross overuse of the words unprecedented, pivot, and new normal! Whew! The only thing that might make this retreat more appealing is to include legendary speaker, Rob Evans, which we have done! Please plan to join Rob for reflection, relaxation, re-invigoration, and a bit of counseling as we celebrate the end to a historic year and look forward to the future. Bring your family and enjoy golf, tennis, local low-country cuisine, and the company of colleagues.

2021-2022 Professional Development

 October 15, 2021Educators Conference for Middle School Educators | High Point University 

NCAIS Board Approved Cancellation Policy:

All attendees receive a full refund if they cancel at least two weeks before an in-person event, and a 50% refund if they cancel one week before the event; no refunds thereafter. All refunds are subject to a 15% administrative fee (rounded up to the nearest dollar). 

Financial Assistance:

NCAIS has a modest amount of financial assistance available. Please do not hesitate to ask if that would be helpful.