Now or Never: The Research Basis for Innovation in Christian Schools

In Schools at Risk: An Analysis of Factors Endangering the Evangelical Christian School Movement in America (Nichols 2016), I investigated the nature, causes, and contributing factors to Christian school closures in the U.S. since 2006. A goal of the study was to identify implications for practice that these factors held for the future, as well …

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Harkness: Timely, Timeless Innovation

I remember the phone call I made to my dissertation chair like it was yesterday. I hadn’t rehearsed it. In fact, I didn’t really think too long about the implications. After 2 years of research and study on the topic of Independent School leadership, this decision meant I would make a hard turn, about-face, and …

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Schools That Change Lives

What does this diagram represent?   What about this one? If you got the first one, you probably got the second one. I’m not sure where I first saw these diagrams, but they come to mind when I think about the power a school has to affect students’ lives. I have had the privilege over …

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The Real Cost of Marketing Research

We live in a world where, when we wonder why something is the way it is or want an answer to a relatively trivial question, we have the ability to find the answer rather quickly. Our expectation is that these curiosities can and should be answered almost immediately. This has contributed to expectations around market …

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Lessons from the First-Ever Christian School

Catechetical School of Alexandria Learning from the founding of the First-Ever Christian School (Note to the reader: Most of what follows is gleaned from Dr. Willem Oliver’s research summaries here and here on the history of the Catechetical School.) The Catechetical School of Alexandria was started in Alexandria, Egypt in the 5th decade of the …

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What? How? Why? Who?

In the last week, my Instagram and Facebook feeds have been inundated with images of the first days of school. Teachers displaying their tidy bulletin boards and kids sporting new outfits and smiling faces grace my screen. I love seeing these beginnings – the new year brings excitement and a re-energizing spirit. School year beginnings …

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World Cup Leadership Lessons

One of the great highlights for our family this summer was watching the World Cup. One article reported 3.4 billion people watched some portion of this year’s tournament, almost half of the world’s population. There were so many riveting games, beautiful goals, compelling storylines and examples of great leadership. Sports provide incredible lessons of leadership …

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Making Way for Millennials in Leadership

Position Vacant: School Principal Qualifications: Wisdom of a sage, vision of a Chief Executive Officer, intellect of a scholar, leadership of a point guard, compassion of a counselor, moral strength of a nun, courage of a firefighter, craft knowledge of a surgeon, political savvy of a senator, toughness of a soldier, listening skills of a …

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Innovation: Moving Beyond Debate to Constructive Action

What is Innovation? When you think of the word “innovation,” what images or ideas come to mind? This is not a rhetorical question! Invoking the word “innovation” in education is a bit like challenging someone to a Rorschach test. When you look at the ink blot formed by the letters of that word, what do …

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Love & Logic: Reading Between the “One-Liners”

When I read the apostles’ letters to early Christian churches, I’m always curious about backstory. Why did Paul write these words to the believers in Philippi, for instance? Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility, value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to …

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