Administrators discuss school development

Rian Ratnavale

Administrators from nine schools across the nation met at Harvard-Westlake for the annual meeting of the Independent Schools with Maximum Capacity consortium Oct. 6 and 7.

They discussed the Programme for International Student Assessment testing, as well as issues the schools have in common, such as student attention.

Head of Upper School Audrius Barzdukas moderated a panel called “Competing for Attention” with DreamWorks CEO Stacey Snider (Katie Jones ’15, Natalie Jones ’17) and OMD CEO Monica Karo (Marissa ’16, Matthew ’14). Rex Welshon, a philosophy professor from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs made a presentation titled “What is Attention?”

Everyone attending the conference also went to the Common Sense Media Event hosted by the school in Saperstein Theatre at the Middle School campus titled, “Mean Spirited by Mistake: Raising Kids in a Digital World” Oct. 6.

The featured speakers were Jim Steyer, Common Sense CEO, and Emily Bazelon, author of the book “Sticks and Stones: Defeating the Culture of Bullying and Rediscovering the Power of Character and Empathy.”

Schools in the consortium all have large student populations, multiple campuses and unique school missions and ideals.

Throughout the year, they share data so they can learn from institutions similar to their own.

“It was great having an opportunity to learn from 10 [of the] most complex schools in the country,” Viewpoint Interim Head of School Paul Rosenbaum said. “Welshon was unusually insightful. His [theory] about attention disorder coming from a lack of physical exercise was interesting.”