Deep Dive Pre-Sessions


Deep Dive Pre-Sessions 

To meet the demand for higher-level content, NCAC is pleased to offer “deep dive” sessions at NCAC 2022. These are cohesive and interactive sessions that allow for a more focused, in-depth exploration of a subject than is possible in regular sessions. Both deep dives will take place  on Monday, November 14th just prior to the opening of the conference.  These sessions are a focused, in-depth educational experience led by seasoned facilitators.  Attendance is limited. Sign up early.

Each 1/2 day session is $300 and includes continental breakfast, lunch, all materials and free wifi. Rates are per person.

Monies from your Carl Perkins or Title 1 grants are allowable for these sessions. 

#1) Creating Ownership in the Academy Model 

Bring your team and put the right people in the right places!  Leave this session with a focused action plan centered around the needs of your academy. Your action plan will include:  what data to track, how to structure your academy meetings around your mission, and an assigned role for everyone on your team based on strengths.  

Target Audience: Academy Principals, Assistant Principals, Academy Team Leaders, Academy Teachers

Facilitator: Fawn Gernstein, Academy Principal of Business and Communication Academies of Grand Island Senior High- Grand Island, NE

#2) Shifting to a Distributed Leadership Model within the Career Academy

Instructional leaders lead for the overall improvement of teaching and learning. A distributive model shares responsibilities for outcomes, builds a system of support and creates sustainable structures and accountability systems that build the capacity of others to lead. This pre-session includes characteristics of an academy leader and understanding the various academy leadership responsibilities and practices necessary to build highly-effective teams. Participants will discuss and create their own team roles and responsibilities to ensure distributed leadership within their academy.  

Target audience: Principals, Assistant Principals, District Office Personnel

Facilitator: Dr. Vanessa Garcia, Libscomb University

#3) Using Academy Data and Setting Smart Goals

In this interactive session, participants will learn how to collect, analyze, and use data aligned with the National Standards of Practice and student outcomes. All participants will be provided a template for collecting and analyzing data specific to academy implementation and student achievement. Participants will also learn how, and have the opportunity to develop Smart Goals to address areas of need as indicated by academy implementation data and academy student achievement data aligned with school/district/state targets. 

Target audience: Academy Directors and Academy Leaders

Facilitator: Dr. Michelle Wilcox, Steele Dynamics/NCAC

#4) The Importance of your Academy Brand in the Covid Era

We are all burned out.  Educators, parents, students and the business community have been inundated with messages of hardship created by our new reality.  Most districts have been concentrating on communicating the necessary information on covid protocols and school closures, remote learning vs. in person, and all the other nuances of adapting to the covid era. Now, more than ever, it is imperative to build a strong Academy Brand, reminding our constituents of the GOOD NEWS the Academy Model brings and the effect it has on student outcomes.  In this interactive session, participants will learn the basics of building brand strategy and the best marketing and communications tactics to switch the narrative from covid to college and career.  Participants will leave with the tools and information needed to build their brand in their own school and district.

Facilitator: Pam Daly, DK Brand

#5 Implementing Multi-Tiered Systems of Support and Interventions into the Academy Model


This workshop will include an introduction to Multi-Tiered Systems of Supports and Student Interventions designed for teams working in middle and secondary career academy schools. Participants will focus on MTSS work which promote the academic, social/emotional, and college and career development of all students. Special consideration is placed on the complexities middle and high school educators face in implementing MTSS as class sizes are large, students have a variety of needs, and we are often bound by obligations around schedule, curriculum pacing guides, time and minimal resources. The content will cover how Academy team members can use equitable, evidence-based practices, assessments, instructional resources, whole system engagement, and data-driven planning to align academy goals and intervention services. Participants will leave with several strategies and ideas that can be immediately implemented based on their unique role in the school—administrator, teacher, counselor, academy coach.  

Facilitator: Dr. Nicole Cobb, Vanderbilt University

#6 Standards-Based Interdisciplinary Planning

This session provides participants with a detailed overview of the Standards Based Interdisciplinary Planning/Project Based Learning (SBIP/PBL) process that includes direction on how to:

  • Deconstruct standards collaboratively within your teachers' scope and sequence curriculum documents
  • Determine common concepts or universal ideas and skills from their standards to serve as the focus for interdisciplinary instructional planning
  • Determine how projects might be designed so students will demonstrate mastery of each content area's concepts and skills that are to be taught

and teaches participants how to do the following:

  • Build teacher capacity starting with concept-based instruction
  • Evaluate the quality of project designs
  • Monitor the implementation of SBIP/PBL
  • Measure the impact on student learning

Participants will practice using an Innovation Configuration (IC) Map and review academy artifacts, like PBL plans and academy meeting minutes, to simulate the monitoring and evaluation process.  Participants will leave the session with basic skills and resources necessary to support, monitor, and evaluate the implementation of SBIP/PBL and electronic templates of monitoring and data collection tools.

This session is applicable to all K-12 educators!

Target audience: K-12 Educators, Administrators (District and School level), academy coaches, teacher leaders with academy responsibilities.

Facilitator: David Holden, American Alliance for Innovative Systems (AAIS)

#7 Academies 101


This training provides an in depth look at career academies and the ingredients that comprise highly successful ones. If scheduling, curriculum integration, teaming and recruitment make your head spin or if you worry about developing an advisory board or creating effective partnerships, this work session helps you delve into the rationale behind each one, as well as strategies to approach the topics.  You will receive guidance from professionals based on the ten National Standards of Practice (NSOP) and learn the secrets of how to get started in the right direction. Career Academies 101 takes the same approach and has been effective for academies across the country.

Facilitator: Dr. Aimee Wyatt, SREB

#8 Building Strong Business and Community Partnerships

Learn how to successfully onboard a business or community partner from intake to placement. Utilizing the PENCIL Partner continuum, participants will discover how to build and nurture sustainable partnerships. PENCIL Partnership core characteristics will provide insight on how to define, recruit, and retain partners. 


 Facilitator: Bob Kucher, PENCIL