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State education conference ideas shared

Local school officials from Tuscola CUSD #301 have returned from the state’s largest school management conference, where they met with thousands of Illinois school board members and other education leaders from around the state.

“This conference provides so much knowledge and insight that can directly aid our district,” said Mrs. Khristi Boyer, board president. “New management ideas, a better understanding of state and federal education laws, and creative solutions to common school issues are just a few of the benefits the conference provides.”

The 85th annual conference of the Illinois Association of School Boards, Illinois Association of School Administrators, and the Illinois Association of School Business Officials drew nearly 10,000 members and guests. It was held Nov. 17-19 in Chicago.

District #301 heard a variety of presentations on issues ranging from school finance and governance to labor issues and school security. The district sent a delegation of five people. Those attending were: Mrs. Khristi Boyer, School Board President; Mr. Toby Ring, School Board Member; Mrs. Cathy Mannen, School Board Member; Mr. Rick Quinn, School Board Member; Mr. Michael Smith. Superintendent

“This was my third conference, and every year I am able to bring back new ideas and solutions that will benefit our district and the students. There is always something new, whether it be a solution to a reoccurring issue or a product that will benefit learning or even a creative idea that we can use for community outreach. We are able to come away with a number concepts to use back home,” Boyer, Board President continued. “While the board members in attendance represent different regions with different enrollments and demographics, we all have similar experiences to share.”

Tuscola CUSD #301 was one of more than 675 Illinois districts represented at this year’s event. Also attending the conference were administrative professionals, regional and state education officials, education professors, school attorneys, and hundreds of exhibitors.

Superintendent Michael Smith said the district typically sends three to four board members to the conference.

“As conferences go, this is by far the most affordable and practical professional development opportunity at our disposal. It brings together the various components of school leadership and provides an opportunity to hear new perspectives on the challenges all Illinois schools are faced with. It really is a one-stop-shop for profession development and learning.”

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