Keynote & Featured Speakers - Kids First National Conference

Keynote & Featured Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Robert Jackson

Robert Jackson

Robert Jackson, 2019 Motivational Educator of the Year Award winner and author of six books, is one of the most sought-after speakers in the country, delivering keynote addresses and workshops to educators, administrators, parents, and students. He is an expert in teaching cultural diversity, restorative practices, socio-emotional learning, and how to retain troubled students in school. His goal is to teach educators and administrators how to use their power more effectively to educate, activate, and motivate all students to be successful. He challenges parents to take a more active role in their children’s education, and he works with students to overcome pain and hardships through discipline and accountability.

Mr. Jackson received his BS degree in Industrial Technology while lettering 4 years in both Football and Track. After being cut from the NFL Minnesota Vikings nearly 25 years ago, he began his teaching career. As an educator and coach, he didn’t allow his students to feel sorry for themselves or let their circumstances define their futures. Several of his students went from being low performing to successful pastors, lawyers, school administrators, teachers, sales reps, business owners, pro athletes, entertainers, and more.

www.robertjacksonmotivates.com

KEYNOTE Presentation (10/26)

Power of the Educator: Becoming Culturally Aware of Staff and Students

This keynote will give educators strategies to educate, activate and motivate all students and staff to be successes through Cultural Awareness. Many Educator’s perceptions have become their reality. Therefore, they continue to fail their students. During this interactive keynote Mr. Jackson will give tools to build positive relationships with students and staff along with strategies and techniques that have been proven to work. Educators will receive one of the best techniques to handle conflict with students that has been proven to work. Participants will be challenged to self-evaluate their own teaching techniques including their thought process to assist in the success of their students. Come and engage in this fun, interactive keynote and receive tools you can use right away.

BREAKOUT Session

TBA

Joe Sanfelippo, PhD

Joe Sanfelippo, PhD

Dr. Joe Sanfelippo is the Superintendent of the Fall Creek School District in Fall Creek, Wisconsin, home of the Fall Creek Crickets. The Fall Creek School District was named an Innovative District in 2016 and 2017 by the International Center for Leadership in Education. Joe holds a BA in Elementary and Early Childhood Education, an MS in Educational Psychology, an MS in Educational Leadership, and a PhD in Leadership, Learning, and Service.

Joe co-hosts the Hacking Leadership Podcast and co-authored “The Power of Branding: Telling Your School’s Story”; “Principal Professional Development: Leading Learning in a Digital Age”; and “Hacking Leadership: 10 Ways Great Leaders Inspire Learning That Teachers, Students, and Parents Love.” He was selected as 1 of 117 Future Ready Superintendents in 2014 and 1 of 50 Superintendents as a Personalized Learning Leader by the US Department of Education in 2016. Education Dive named Joe 1 of 5 K-12 Administrators to watch in 2018 and their National Superintendent of the Year in 2019.

www.jsanfelippo.com

KEYNOTE Presentation (10/27)

Impact the Narrative

Every interaction matters because every interaction could be the one they talk about for the rest of their lives. School perception is often based on the narrative of those who attended schools years ago. If we are INTENTIONAL about walking into every conversation knowing it could be the one they talk about for years to come, we OPEN DOORS for that outside to see us for who we are and BUILD MOMENTUM by creating a culture where every story matters we have a tremendous opportunity to impact the narrative of our students, teachers, and community. 

BREAKOUT Session

The Impact of 30 Second Moments 

960. That is the number of 30-second increments we get in an 8 hour day. 960 chances to change a life. 960 opportunities to share a story. 960 times to make a student, parent, or community member feel like they are part of your school. Moments have the ability to stick in our brains forever. A sight, smell, or taste brings us back to our childhood. We have a responsibility to be intentional about how we utilize these moments. The fact is simply this…you will be remembered, the only question is how. Every 30 seconds matter.

Featured Speakers

Frank J. Kros, MSW, JD

Frank J. Kros, MSW, JD

Frank J. Kros, MSW, JD is a career child advocate, with over 30 years of experience. He is a worldwide speaker and has created more than 20 professional development, brain-inspired workshops for parents, educators, and social workers, focusing on “Helping Adults Help Kids.” He has co-authored two books, and in 2019 was named Advocate of the Year by Maryland’s State Council on Child Abuse and Neglect. In addition, he serves Maryland as an adverse childhood experiences master trainer.

BREAKOUT Session

Together but Different: Advanced Resilience Building Strategies for Social Distancing

COVID-19 drastically changed everyone’s life. While some of those changes will be permanent, most of the children and youth in our schools and child-serving programs will return to being together with us adults.  Many, perhaps most, of our students and clients will be very different than when they last left our buildings. The social isolation, economic stress, child maltreatment, barriers to resources and enduring uncertainties brought on by the pandemic interventions created a “perfect storm” for the development of anxiety, depression, child maltreatment, neglect and family violence. Children and youth entering the pandemic already vulnerable will likely have suffered most from these new traumas. Inequity in the access to supportive educational, mental health and social services will likely exacerbate their struggles. To meet these dramatic healing needs our children and youth will bring us, helping adults can step-up to this new normal by boosting their resilience building skills. In this workshop, we’ll add to your toolbox by providing concrete strategies for building resilience in the complex post-COVID19 context. These advanced tools will show you how to reconnect, calm, provide clear direction, manage boundaries, and instill hope with your students and clients.

BREAKOUT Session

Leadership Lessons from the Pandemic: The 5 Best Strategies for Remaining Resilient in Crisis

The unprecedented and largely unanticipated speed of change resulting from the pandemic interventions placed leaders in truly unknown territory. With few relevant models to look to, leaders of educational, social service and government programs across the world faced decisions and challenges never encountered. How did they fare? In this workshop, we’ll specifically focus on the specific strategies used by leaders and their organizations to remain resilient and flexible under the unceasing demands of the COVID-19 crisis. The 5 most successful strategies will be shared and practiced “live” in the session so that you will leave with concrete tools you can apply immediately to build and maintain your own leadership resilience and boost the culture of resilience in your program.

Dr. Jim Ewing

Dr. Jim Ewing

Dr. Jim Ewing is an assistant professor at Stephen F. Austin State University. Jim’s teaching, research, and service focus on teaching math to Spanish-speaking English to emergent bilinguals (ELLs). He has published eight articles about math and EBs and a book titled “Math for ELLs. As Easy as Uno, Dos, Tres.” He is a national speaker and has presented at NCTM, ASCD, and was a guest speaker at Eric Jensen’s poverty workshop. Dr. Ewing partners with schools and gives professional development around the country.

BREAKOUT Sessions

Math for ELLs – As Easy as Uno, Dos, Tres

There is a myth that math is a universal language and yet we are struggling to meet the needs of ELLs. How is your Spanish? Imagine learning math in Spanish. Three quarters of ELLs are Spanish-speaking. This motivating session focuses on them. Jim is the author of a book about ELLs that discuss assets. You will learn strategies as easy as uno, dos, tres!

BREAKOUT Session

Developing ELLs’ Language

This motivating, research-based session reveals how you can develop ELs’ language and teach content at the same time. Come discover how ELLs can learn when WE learn strategies. It is as easy as uno, dos, tres.

Shauna King

Shauna King

Shauna King is a former principal, Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports coordinator, and classroom teacher with over 20 years of experience in public and non-public school settings. A self-proclaimed “Yelling Teacher In Recovery”, Shauna shares practical and research-based strategies to improve teacher, parent, and student engagement. She is the author of “School Smart: It’s More Than Just Reading and Writing”.

BREAKOUT Session

Don’t Lose HOPE: Fostering Resilience, Hope and Optimism in Ourselves and Our Students

Hope is a critical tool for improving effort and attitude. Adults can (and should) intentionally strive to BUILD HOPE daily! Hope includes a belief that one knows how to reach one’s goals and a belief that one has the motivation to use those pathways to reach one’s goals. In this highly engaging session, learn how HOPE has been impacted during this pandemic and how schools and educators can foster HOPE and resilience in ourselves and our students. 

BREAKOUT Session

I See You and You Matter: Culturally Responsive Teaching Practices

Culturally responsive teaching uses the cultural knowledge, prior experiences, and performance styles of diverse students to make learning more appropriate and effective for them; it teaches to and through the strengths of these students. While educators may understand the value of creating a culturally responsive classroom, it is difficult for many teachers to imagine what a culturally responsive classroom looks like in practice. Using the lens of neuroscience, teachers can make classrooms safe and nurturing for all. In this highly interactive and engaging session, participants will identify practices that boost students’ brainpower and information processing in an environment that values culture. 

Steve Parese

Steve Parese

Steve has been an educator for 30 years, teaching and developing programs for juvenile offenders with special education needs in a variety of therapeutic and correctional settings. He has written a number of articles and programs regarding cognitive interventions with juvenile and adult offenders, and with hard-to-serve welfare recipients. He has provided training and technical assistance to community-based organizations, correctional agencies and alternative schools, and has spoken at state, regional, national, and international conferences to more than 35,000 people across the world.

BREAKOUT Sessions

What Are They Thinking? Using Cognitive Behavioral Interventions with Court-Involved Youth

This intriguing and interactive workshop with Dr. Steve Parese explores the cognitive-behavioral (CB) patterns that court-involved youth often use to justify harmful behavior. We first delve into cognitive skills training, a CB approach to help youth gain self-control skills, social skills, and/or problem-solving skills needed for success at home and work. We then explore cognitive restructuring, a second CB approach used to challenge the antisocial thinking at-risk youth often use to justify their actions. Attendees will receive a helpful follow-up article to summarize the workshop and share with colleagues. 

BREAKOUT Session

Acting Up or Acting Out? Managing Behavior Problems at Home

Adult caretakers of challenging children and youth are often called upon to handle escalating problem behaviors in their homes — especially now, with so many children at home instead of in school. This practical and interactive workshop with Dr. Steve Parese first explores two psychological sources of problem behaviors, separating deliberate acting up from emotional acting out. Next, we discuss the use of firm limits and non-punitive consequences to effectively respond to intentional misbehaviors. Finally, we practice therapeutic skills for de-escalating highly emotional behaviors. Attendees will receive a helpful follow-up article to summarize the workshop and share with colleagues. 

General Session Speaker

Captain Wes Huey, Ph.D., USN (Retired)

Captain Wes Huey, Ph.D., USN (Retired)

Wes graduated from the Naval Academy and flew the F-14 Tomcat in Operation Desert Storm and later commanded a FA-18 squadron in Iraqi Freedom. Captain Huey served as Naval Aide to President William Jefferson Clinton.  He also received his Ph.D. from the University of MD and then served as the Director of Leadership Education and Development at the Naval Academy, leading a faculty of 43 civilian and military professors, teaching four core courses in leadership and military ethics, along with philosophy, psychology, sociology  and military law teaching the entire student body every year. Following retirement from the military he became Director of Learning and Development at Skyline Technology Solutions to help the organization build healthy and productive relationships at the center of its Mission and operations.

GEENERAL Session

Creating a Culture of Innovation

“Franklin Delano Roosevelt famously said, in his first inaugural at the depths of the Great Depression:  “This great Nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper. So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.”