Presenting ALI R&D Projects 2021

game boardThe ATLIS Leadership Institute asks its fellows to undertake a capstone project at the end of each year of learning together. The project builds on each team's collaborative learning and goals for the year, while also seeking to provide a tool, research, or though leadership that can benefit the larger community of technology leaders in independent schools.

ATLIS proudly presents the R&D project for the 2020-2021 Cohort below:

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ATLIS Virtual Town Hall, May 13, 2021: Through the Portal

The ATLIS Virtual Town Hall for May 12, 2021 found our technology colleagues at independent schools reflecting on their schools’ identities and pondering how to refresh both the tech and the tech teams at their schools this summer. -- SD [15-min. read, 1-hour video]

  • June 16, 1 pm Eastern: Save the date for our next Virtual Town Hall. Registration is required for new Virtual Town Hall participants and is free and open to all. If you have previously registered, you will automatically receive an invitation to join. 
  • Complete Virtual Town Hall Video Archive (Wakelet)

ATLIS Virtual Town Hall
Video Archive 

May 13, 2021 

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ATLIS Announces Incoming Chair

ATLIS Announces Incoming Chair
Denise Musselwhite steps into Chair-Elect role in July

 The Association of Technology Leaders in Independent Schools (ATLIS), the only professional association for independent school technology directors, announced that Denise Musselwhite has been unanimously named as chair-elect to the ATLIS board of directors, effective July 1, 2021. She is the Chief Information Officer at Trinity Preparatory School in Winter Park, Florida.

As chair-elect she will work alongside ATLIS’s current chair, Dawn Klus, until Klus’s term expires in July 2022, at which time Musselwhite will assume the chair position.

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ATLIS Honors 2021 Leadership Cohort

This month 31 Fellows completed their work for the first international cohort of the ATLIS Leadership Institute. In 2020, ATLIS redesigned its leadership programming to meet the needs of technologists serving independent schools at any stage of their careers, adding to 4 previous cohorts of its earlier iteration as ECATD. Congratulate these members of the 2021 Cohort:
Brittany Adkins-Williams, STEM Integrator, York Preparatory School, NY
Wendy Apfel, Educational Technology Integrator, Bay School of San Francisco, CA
Becky Barrett, Educational Technologist, Good Shepherd Episcopal School, Dallas, TX
Damien Barrett, Director of Technology, Montclair Kimberley Academy, NJ
Baekkyoung Choi, System Specialist, Chadwick International School, South Korea
Barbara Cohen. Director of Technology, Brandeis Marin School, CA
Sarah Costello, Co-Director of Technology and Innovation, San Francisco Day School, CA
Jimmy Cudzilo, Interim CIO, Miami Country Day School, FL
Rebekah Daniell, Academic Technology Specialist, Lovett School, GA
Peter Evans, Technology Director, Francis W. Parker School, IL
Gabriel Gador, Program Manager, Information Technology, Poway Unified School District, CA
Matthew Herrera, Director of Information Technology Westtown School, PA
Brian King, Director of Technology, Fredericksburg Christian School, VA
James Lengel, Director of Technology, Hamlin School, CA
Robyn Little, Director of Educational Technology, McDonogh School, MD
Angela Mackenzie, Director of Educational Technology and Library, St. Margaret’s Episcopal School, CA
Colleen McNeil, Chief Technology Officer, St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes School, VA
Jennifer Mehra, ISS Department Coordinator, The Blake School, MN
Carl (CJ) Micklitsch, Director of Technology, Canterbury School, IN
Jason Moore, KIOSC Educator & Project Coordinator, Swinburne University of Technology, Wantirna, Victoria, Australia
Erin O’Brien, Director of Technology, Isadore Newman School, LA
Frances Cortez O’Connor, Technology Integration Specialist, National Cathedral School, Washington, DC
Kimberly Pearson, Director of Technology, Kent Place School, NJ
Jeremy Rahn, Instructional Technology Coordinator, Cranbrook Schools, MI
Ashley Reed, Technology Education Coordinator, Temple Beth Am Day School, FL
JC Rodriguez, Database Manager, Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart, FL
Zack Smith, Training and Information Technician, The Bush School, WA
Jose Tagle, Director of Technology, The Buckley School, CA
Melissa Turner, Director of Educational Technology, Flint Hill School, VA
Tracey Williams, Design Thinking and Technology Integration Specialist and Ed-Tech Coordinator, All Saints Episcopal School, AZ
Phil Zaubi, IT Director, Porter-Gaud School, SC
Applications are being accepted for the newest ALI cohort. ALI’s team-oriented professional development program is designed to support your growth as the technology leader your school needs, no matter where you are in your career. Apply now -- the program begins June 25.

Save money for your school

We are pleased and excited to announce a new partnership that we expect will add significant value to ATLIS members. We’ve teamed up with Revolution Office to provide a potential solution to a challenge we hear a lot about -- printers!

Revolution Office has extensive experience with the K-12 independent school community.  They are industry disruptors and have created a new way to save on copier/printer technology with guaranteed savings of 30 percent to 50 percent, even if a school is in the middle of an existing equipment lease.  These savings have translated to tens and hundreds of thousands and the average K-12 independent school is savings $73k.  Revolution Office offers all major brands including Canon, Ricoh, and Xerox and as well as guarantees that include 95 percent uptime and four-hour service response time. 

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ATLIS Announces Incoming Directors

ATLIS Announces Incoming Directors

Hudson, Kern, Malter to join Board in July 2021

PRESS RELEASE: The Association of Technology Leaders in Independent Schools (ATLIS), the only professional association for independent school technology directors, announces the election of three highly qualified professionals to its board of directors: 

Eric Hudson, Director of Learning & Design, Global Online Academy
Jason Kern, Assistant Head of School for Innovation and Learning, All Saints Episcopal School, Tyler, Texas
Aggie Malter, President and CEO, PAISBO

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Measuring Up: ATLIS Announces 2021 Compensation Benchmark Report

ATLIS once again partnered with Ed Tech Recruiting to update its popular benchmark report focusing on what technology leaders earn in the way of salaries and benefits in their roles at independent schools. The 2021 Compensation Benchmark Report for Technology Leaders in Schools provides in-depth analysis that looks at compensation through a wide variety of lenses, giving tech leaders ample opportunity to have meaningful conversations around compensation. [10-minute read]

By Christina Lewellen, Executive Director

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Relieving the Burden of Payment Security

Relieving Some of the Burden of Payment Security

As business offices evaluate their processes in the wake of COVID-19 restrictions, changing school policies, and ever-evolving technology priorities, keeping payment compliance top of mind is critical. Maintaining compliance for software applications that process payments is demanding, requiring regular audits and reports as well as knowledgeable staff.

The security of cardholder information is of the highest importance. Schools face a choice: Install a software application on premise and maintain PCI DSS compliance for all payments processed at your school, or partner with a Software as a Service (SaaS) vendor or Application Service Provider (ASP) who maintains the software to meet PCI DSS compliance, reducing the school’s compliance scope.

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2021 Pillar Winners Press Release

ATLIS Announces 2021 Pillar Award Winners

Cuevas, Luthra, Ramsden recognized with association’s top honor

March 30, 2021—The Association of Technology Leaders in Independent Schools (ATLIS), the only professional association for independent school technology directors, announced today the recognition of three highly accomplished professionals as 2021 ATLIS Pillar Award winners:

  • Hiram Cuevas, Director of Information Services and Academic Technology, St. Christopher’s School, Richmond, Virginia

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ATLIS Cybersecurity Update (March 31, 2021)

ATLIS continues to provide critical information to the independent school community via its semi-annual Cybersecurity Update webinar. On March 31, 2021, regular contributors Todd Doss of the Ankura cybersecurity response team, Alex Inman of Educational Collaborators, and Buddy Pitt of Logically offered their latest insights, including how to build a team to conduct a self-audit, how to conduct regular, necessary training in how to avoid common pitfalls, and how to consider the changing landscape of cyber criminal behavior, including recent attacks that hijack software updates to sneak into your systems.  -- SD [5-minute read; 1-hour video]

ATLIS Cybersecurity Update (Webinar Video Archive)
March 31, 2021

Don't miss these ATLIS Cybersecurity Resources!

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ATLIS Virtual Town Hall, March 10, 2021: The BIG Portal Shifts with Special Guest Will Richardson

Our latest Virtual Town Hall introduced our audience to Will Richardson, keynote speaker for ATLIS 2021: Undaunted, and launched a discussion of the major shifts in our schools over the course of the past year.  Next we wondered what you think will stick after the pandemic has passed. We then ask what is the best vision of schools we can imagine for the future and how technology can undergird the vision we share. - SD [10-minute read; 1-hour video]

  • May 19, 1 pm Eastern: Save the date for our next Virtual Town Hall. Registration is required for new Virtual Town Hall participants and is free and open to all. If you have previously registered, you will automatically receive an invitation to join. 
  • Complete Virtual Town Hall Video Archive (Wakelet)

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Important Announcement: ATLIS Retreat Pushed to July

In the wake of recent announcements that all eligible and interested parties will have access to a COVID-19 vaccine by May, ATLIS is pleased to share that it has worked with the Seattle venue to push back the ATLIS 2021: Undaunted in-person retreat to July 24-27, 2021.

“We know that many people in our community are interested in attending the retreat, but the timing of vaccine availability wasn’t aligning with our late April dates,” said Christina Lewellen, executive director of ATLIS. “When our hotel venue was open to partnering on later dates, we knew it would also open up the possibility for more interested attendees to join us for this important immersive experience. We were always confident we could host a safe event and now the later July timing gives us the opportunity to deliver the retreat experience to more of those who want to participate."

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ATLIS Reads: Radical Candor by Kim Scott

Our year-long book seminar for technology thought leaders concludes with this guest post from Ethan Delavan, who previews Radical Candor: Fully Revised & Updated Edition Be a Kick-Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity by Kim Scott. We welcome your ideas for ATLIS Reads book selections for 2021-2022. Send your suggestions to [email protected] -- SD [10-minute read]

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Do You Want Sympathy or Solutions?

At a recent Virtual Town Hall, Damien Barrett, Systems Administrator and Ed Tech Integrator at Montclair Kimberley Academy in New Jersey,illustration shared his philosophy for working with stressed colleagues and students as we all get through the challenges of this pandemic year. He shares more insights on this topic in this guest blog post. -- SD [10 minute read]

Guest Blogger: Damien Barrett 

When either my wife Alise or I have an obviously bad day, we have agreed to ask each other one simple, but powerful question: Are you seeking sympathy or solutions? 

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One More Time: Let’s Not Go Back to Normal

This post provides a window into the inspiration we expect to hear from Will Richardson, co-founder of The BIG Questions Institute and keynote for the ATLIS 2021: Undaunted Annual Conference on April 13. Spend some time with the new BQI ebook 9 BIG Questions Schools Must Answer to Avoid Going "Back to Normal" (*Because Normal Wasn't That Great to Begin With) before the virtual conference on April 12-13 and you'll be even more prepared to dig into the questions that matter for our community as we address how we can sustain innovations achieved in the past year and look ahead to plan the kinds of schools we hope to create for post-pandemic learners. -- SD [10-minute read]

coverGuest Blogger: Will Richardson
Co-founder, The BIG Questions Institute
Keynote: ATLIS 2021: Undaunted Annual Conference

I know there’s been a lot of talk of late about getting back to “normal” and the quest to regain some of our old rhythms in life. Everyone is exhausted. We just want to stop having to think about all of this and find some predictability.  

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ATLIS Virtual Town Hall 10 February 2021: Rethinking School with Special Guest Homa Tavangar

This virtual town hall begins with an introduction to Homa Tavangar, keynote speaker for ATLIS 2021 Undaunted, and a discussion of the wellbeing of the educators and their profession. This exposes a natural connection to the new Big Questions Institute ebook, 9 BIG Questions Schools Must Answer to Avoid Going "Back to *Normal" (*Because "Normal" Wasn't That Great to Begin With). This led to a deeper dive into the impact of the pandemic on the personnel who have kept schools up and running and a closer look at the evolution PD for reaching overloaded teachers who shut down at the prospect of "one more thing." - SD [10-minute read; 1-hour video]

Quick Links

  • February 10, 1 pm Eastern: Save the date for our next Virtual Town Hall. Registration is required for new Virtual Town Hall participants and is free and open to all. If you have previously registered, you will automatically receive an invitation to join. 
  • Complete Virtual Town Hall Video Archive (Wakelet)

ATLIS Virtual Town Hall
February 10, 2021
Video Archive

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Technology Benchmarking: How Did Your School Fare During the Pandemic?

ATLIS 2021 Technology Landscape Survey gives immediate insights.


Like many things unexpectedly disrupted with the onset of the pandemic, ATLIS’s annual Technology Impact and Efficacy (TIE) Assessment was derailed in 2020. We were mid-collection when the landscape irrevocably shifted, leaving us to evaluate the benchmarking information that technology leaders would most need right now. With that, we’re pleased to announce we’ve partnered with Educational Collaborators, our TIE Assessment partner, and author Pamela Gaudet to design a quick, meaningful diagnostic tool that provides immediate feedback to technology leaders at independent schools. 

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Are we REALLY gathering in Seattle? Yes, we are.

retreat graphicIf you’ve been waiting for the green light, it’s all systems “go” for Seattle. 

If you’re wondering whether we are moving forward with our in-person retreat in Seattle, the answer is: absolutely. We get the sense that some of you might be wondering if it’s really going to happen, so allow us to clarify some questions! 

Once you register for the ATLIS 2021: Undaunted virtual conference, which takes place April 12-13, you’ll be provided the information to add on the retreat and round out your experience for a nominal additional fee. We’ll be building on the core content offered during the virtual conference with a deeper dive and plenty of time for guided personal contextualizing and strategizing. Join us April 25-28 for a memorable retreat experience. 

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Nominations Open for ATLIS Pillar Awards

If you or someone you know is a technology leader who has stepped into the spotlight in the last year, the time has come for formal recognition. ATLIS is calling for Pillar Award nominations through March 1. 

The ATLIS Pillar Awards were established in 2018 to honor individuals whose body of work exemplify independent school technology leaders. Nominators are encouraged to tie their nominations directly to the ATLIS vision and mission statements. 

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20 Years in Edtech, 20 Lessons Learned

Curt Lieneck is legendary among independent school technology leaders. When he began posting tweets last Fall gleaned from his decades of experience in the field, we paid attention. Happily, Lieneck has allowed ATLIS to collect his wisdom into this blog post. It's actually 21 tips, but who's counting. -- SD [10-minute read]


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