Recruitment and Retention

Our Community

Early Childhood Working Group

The Enrollment Management Association established an Early Childhood Assessment Working Group to understand best practices in assessment for young children and to make recommendations for improved practices within the independent school world.  In 2012, The Enrollment Management Association worked with researcher Chris Bigenho (Greenhills Schools, TX) to gather early childhood admission assessment methods used by our members for children in PK-2nd grade. We were surprised to discover IQ tests being used for admission purposes and given to children as young as three, and also learned that while group play assessment weighed heavily in admission decisions, each school we studied designed its own process.

With this focused working group, we seek to educate our members about new thinking and consider ways in which our community can improve its own practice in understanding young children and their development. The working group is led by Nancy Hayes, Director of Enrollment Management and Financial Aid at New Canaan Country School (CT), and supported by the association's Pedro Martello and Robyn Lewis.

Group Members

  • Nancy Hayes (Chair), New Canaan Country School (CT)
  • Eric Barber, Crossroads School (CA)
  • Jay Lasley, Norfolk Academy (VA)
  • Cheryl Plummer, Greenwich Country Day School (CT)
  • Andrea Prothro, Second Baptist School (TX)

Enrollment Management Think Tank

Enrollment Management Think Tank Group

left to right: Kelly Monaco, Jim Ventre, Jill Lee, Suzanne Walker Buck, Aimee Gruber. (not pictured: Douglas Leek)

Enrollment management is the #1 issue facing independent schools, and admission directors are the front line in dealing with this challenging and complex issue. In an effort to support our members, The Enrollment Management Association convened an Enrollment Management Think Tank to investigate pressing issues, to provide information to the larger independent school community, and to present The Enrollment Management Association’s board of directors with summary thinking and a set of recommendations. Chaired by two respected independent school admission professionals— Jim Ventre, Dean of Admission and Financial Aid, Phillips Academy (MA), and Jill Lee, Director of Admission and Tuition Assistance, Castilleja School (CA)—the group will work to:

• Identify a set of research questions about enrollment management
• Scan the environment of independent schools, higher education, and business/industry for current practices and innovations in recruitment, selection, and retention
• Talk to top researchers and practitioners in the field
• Publish findings and make recommendations to The Enrollment Management Association board of directors

Supported by Senior Director of Outreach and Business Development Aimee Gruber, the EMTT will conduct high level “discovery” about key strategic issues affecting the enrollment health of our schools. The EMTT will offer recommendations to our board of directors no later than fall 2017, defining our critical role in developing content, services, and trainings for our admission community.


Enrollment Management Think Tank Members:

• Co-Chair: Jill Lee, Director of Admission and Tuition Assistance, Castilleja School (CA)
• Co-Chair: Jim Ventre, Dean of Admission and Financial Aid, Phillips Academy (MA)
• Kelly Monaco, Director of Admission, Lower School, Iolani School (HI)
• Suzanne Walker Buck, Rector, Chatham Hall School (VA)
• Douglas Leek, Director of Admissions and Enrollment Management, The Northwest School (WA)

Admission Leadership Council

ALC 2018

Savvy enrollment management strategies start with a solid understanding of demographic trends and your school’s competitive environment. Regional events can be crucial for those seeking insight and collaboration from a local perspective. The Admission Leadership Council (ALC) offers a set of regional seminars each year to bring the trends to you. Composed of experienced volunteers from member independent schools, the ALC plays a critical role in defining current issues and developing professional resources for enrollment managers. The ALC blog, “Right on Time,” keeps the conversation going, offering timely and helpful enrollment management resources.

ALC Logo

The role of the Admission Leadership Council is to: 

  • Be a sounding board for The Enrollment Management Association for the development of admission services
  • Serve as conveners and facilitators of annual, regional meetings of members
  • Provide leadership in the area of professional development for admission professionals
  • Act as advocates for the critical role of admission in schools

For more information about the ALC, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Subcategories

Admission Leadership Council

The SSAT Board of Directors founded the Admission Leadership Council (ALC) in 2009 to reestablish a more consistent organizational and professional voice for members.

 The role of the Admission Leadership Council is to: 

 Be a sounding board for SSATB for the development of admission services

  • Serve as conveners and facilitators of annual, regional meetings of members

  • Provide leadership in the area of professional development for admission professionals

  • Act as advocates for the critical role of admission in schools

For more information about the ALC, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Senior Director of Professional Development

Think Tank on the Future of Assessment

SSATB believes that independent school admission is likely to see disruptive change in the next decade. In previous reports, we’ve speculated that “the 21st century will be marked by game changing technology, a blurring of traditional borders and a complete reinvention of traditional education.” How, then, will independent school enrollment managers respond and remain successful in their work?

Here are just some of the questions the Think Tank will discuss as they work to educate themselves and our community about new trends affecting independent school admission:

• How do we better understand our students’ many kinds of minds, and look for new ways standardized testing can reveal more about them?

• How should we support the professionalism and consistency of the admission process and consider carefully what will serve independent schools 10-20 years from now so we can better lead the profession forward?

• How do we pull together the best available thinking on broadening admission assessments and share that thinking widely?

• How might we test for important character attributes in the admission process?

Related Reading: 

Strategic Partners

In addition to the member school databases available on regional and national association web sites, the National Center for Education Statistics as part of its Private School Universe Survey maintains a searchable database of private school survey respondents.

Think Tank Members

SSATB's Think Tank on the Future of Assessment was established to create an ongoing conversation about 21st century admission and the needs of enrollment managers during their selection process.