Leading Powerful Learning: Unlocking the Potential of Assessment
back to all events
Leading Powerful Learning: Unlocking the Potential of Assessment
Presented by: Katie White
Located at: Royal Hotel Calgary
2828-23 Street NE, Calgary, AB
About the Session

AUDIENCE: K-12 School Administrators and Instructional Leaders are encouraged to attend.

The intersection between learning outcomes and the students we serve is where assessment does its best work. In this two-day leadership series, we will explore ways to ensure this intersection is helpful, hopeful, and powerful. Refining our understanding of leadership that builds assessment literacy is an important part of confident and effective leadership in classrooms, schools, and systems.

In last year’s leadership series, we explored the relationship between assessment and the students and teachers who use it, and we developed tools for leading assessment change. This year, we will revisit this learning and continue to build on the skills we practiced and the understanding we developed, to ensure that assessment lives within classroom spaces in ways that support learning for every student.

In each session, we will explore the research that illuminates effective assessment practice and ways this research might manifest within classrooms and schools. We will also experience first-hand, the practices and protocols that leaders can leverage in their daily work in order to facilitate adult learning.  By the end of this series, leaders will have additional tools in their repertoire to support a personalized approach to assessment leadership and clarity about how to approach challenging conversations and complex contexts.

Session One: Nurturing a Culture of Learning

The culture of our classrooms and schools can either support or undermine any changes we are undertaking. As we move toward a focus on learning that will inevitably involve risk-taking, productive failure, and discomfort, we will need to build up an assessment culture that supports these critical aspects of deep learning and complex skill development.

In this session, we will explore ways to refine our assessment approaches so that we not only support learning but also the development of independent, resilient, and creative learners. We will experience strategies for shifting classroom and school cultures to advance holistic growth and build confidence, even when things feel difficult. We will examine assessment scenarios from multiple perspectives and generate productive responses that support a culture of learning.

Session Two: Navigating Change

We all know that change is complex and leading through change be filled with uncertainty and even discomfort. However, there are specific ways to facilitate conversations and stage learning, so the people involved feel confident and supported.

This session will explore creative and practical frameworks, tools, and strategies for leaders to facilitate assessment conversations and action-planning in non-threatening, emotionally safe ways while still moving in the direction of change and growth. Together, we will experience these frameworks, tools, and strategies, with time to then imagine how to adapt them to personally relevant contexts. We will also explore challenging questions that may arise and possible ways to respond to these questions. There will be time for elementary and secondary teachers to separately focus on personally meaningful topics.

About the Presenter(s)

Katie White spends her days working to transform the educational experience for teachers and students. She has been an integral part of her own school system's multi-year journey through educational reform and has assisted systems worldwide in their work toward approaches that honour learning relationships. She has a passion for helping educators develop a personalized understanding of the connections between curriculum, assessment, and instruction and creative approaches for reaching and teaching every single learner in every single classroom. 

In living out this passion, she not only works within her system, but serves as an independent educational consultant and an author for Solution Tree. Her sense of humor and responsive approach to adult learning makes her a sought-after professional support for systems and schools. In addition, she is a co-moderator of the well-known #ATAssessment Twitter chat and she is the president of the Canadian Assessment for Learning Network.

Her books include:

  • Softening the Edges: Assessment Practices that Honor K-12 Teachers and Learners;
  • Unlocked: Assessment as the Key to Unlocking Everyday Creativity in the Classroom;
  • Student Self-Assessment: Data Notebooks, Portfolios and Other tools to Advance Learning;
  • Concise Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about Assessment and Grading


Fee: $325.00

Includes: lunch daily