• Wix Facebook page
  • Wix Twitter page
  • LinkedIn App Icon


American Association of School Personnel Administrators

7201 W 129th St., Suite 220

Overland Park, KS 66213

P: 913.327.1222 | F: 913.327.1223


AASPA 2019

Pre-Conference Workshop Descriptions:

AM Pre-Conference Workshops: 9 am - 12 pm

1. Labor Relations and Negotiations in a Changing Environment

Mark Pettitt, Director of Labor Relations, OCM BOCES, Syracuse, NY

Most of our Collective Bargaining Agreements were initially negotiated 40 to 50 years ago.  They have

changed over time, but do they really meet the needs of schools today?  In this workshop we will look at

the four functions of a labor agreement:

  • Specifying the terms and conditions of employment;

  • Expanding employee rights;

  • Delineating the rights of the union, and;

  • Limiting the rights of management.

We will look at how to analyze these areas of the agreement in light of the changing demographics of our staff, the shortage of trained certified teachers, continuing budgetary and political constraints and the rapid developments in technology.  We will work as a group to develop medium- and long-term strategies to address these changes through the collective bargaining process. 


2. Transitioning School District Branding to Human Capital – Human Resource Branding

Dr. Amy Dillon, Director of Human Resources, Blue Valley School District, Overland Park, KS

Brian White, Executive Director of HR & Operations, Auburn-Washburn USD 437, Topeka, KS

Dr. Eric Punswick, Executive Director of HR, Blue Valley School District, Overland Park, KS

Join this session as Amy and Brian share a broad overview of branding and how it

impacts districts, schools, and human capital initiatives. They will cover the importance

of developing key messages, ensuring consistency across multiple targeted

communication channels and helping to build employees capacity to serve as brand



3. HR Leadership Training for Supervisors, Managers & Coordinators

Robert Stewart, Ed.D., pHCLE, Assistant Superintendent, Division of HR, Denton

Independent School District, Denton, TX

Jason T. Rainey, M.Ed., Executive Director of Professional Personnel, Denton

Independent School District, Denton, TX

Dr. Daniel Lopez, Executive Director of Elementary Personnel, Denton

Independent School District, Denton, TX

Regina Wright, Director of Employee Relations, Denton Independent School District, Denton, TX

Administrators will gain an understanding of essential components and best practices regarding effective leadership, interviewing, hiring, managing grievances, and investigations.  The session will also explore what, how, and when to document in the event the process just isn’t working for the employee.  In addition, a process to maintain positive relationships and appropriate communication between employee and supervisor will be reviewed.

                           4. Started from the Founders Now We’re Here: Responding to Student and Staff Social Media Usage

                          Kevin T. Sutton, Attorney, Lusk Albertson PLC, Detroit, MI

                         Even in their wildest dreams, the Founding Fathers couldn’t have imagined a time when any person could                                 publish his/her every thought to a worldwide audience with the push of a button.  Twitter, Instagram,                                         Facebook, and legions of other platforms, working in perfect harmony to instantly reach every conceivable                               audience.  Few waters are as tumultuous and dangerous as those related to student and staff social media                               activity, both on and off-campus.  Do tweets constitute protected First Amendment speech or a disruption to the school environment?  Are blog posts crafted from the comfort of home given total protective or can they subject a staff member to employer-scrutiny?  This presentation will examine all aspects of student and staff speech shared via social media platforms.  In addition to reviewing relevant legal precedents, best practices for addressing social media activity, suggestions on policy-making and training, and encouraging responsible digital citizenship will be addressed.


5. Significant Labor and Employment Issues for Schools

E. Fredrick Preis, Jr., Partner/Attorney, Breazeale Sachse & Wilson, LLP, New Orleans, LA

Today’s School Personnel Administrators are faced with new workforce challenges each and every day.

As such, it is vital that each School Representative be sensitized to recognize potential issues so

Administrators can pro-actively try to prevent them from growing into larger costly claims, charges or

lawsuits.  This session  will deal with the most significant labor/employment matters confronting educators—

including Wage & Hour, Disability Accommodation, Employee Discipline, and Unions—and provide practical

and legal responses.

                                                                       6. New HR Administrator Toolkit 

                                                                    Dr. Kim Chambers, Director of HR, Adlai E. Stevenson HS District 125, Lincolnshire, IL

                                                                    Dr. Beth Dalton, Assistant Superintendent of HR, Kildeer Countryside CCSD 96,

                                                                    Buffalo Grove, IL

                                                                    Dr. Dale Fisher, Executive Director for HR, Deerfield Public Schools District, Deerfield, IL

                                                                  Join three veteran HR Administrators for a half-day session covering the basics of

                                                                  the Human Resources Office.  They will share checklists, tips, tech-related efficiencies,                                                                    and advice for success in your new (or newer) role.

PM Pre-Conference Workshops: 1 pm - 4 pm

                           7. FMLA, ADA and Workers’ Compensation: Untangling the Spider Web, Legal Update and Best Practices

                           in Leave Administration

                          Scott Macdonald, Esq., SPHR, SHRM_SCP, Managing Director, Macdonald & Associates, Middletown, CT

                         The complexity of administering FMLA has been tripping up HR for over 25 years.  Adding to the difficulty is                                 the interplay of the Americans with Disability Act, under which employees may qualify for extended leave, as                             well as Workers’ Compensation requirements.  This session reviews the latest compliance issues and court decisions relating to FMLA and ADA, and provides attendees with useful, practical tips and tools to navigate and manage FMLA and ADA accommodation leaves.


8. WIRED for Diversity Recruiting

Emily Douglas-McNab, Senior Director, Battelle for Kids, Hilliard, OH

Kate Heynoski, Senior Director, Battelle for Kids, Hilliard, OH

Tony Bagshaw, Chief improvement Officer, Battelle for Kids, Hilliard, OH

Finding high quality individuals to serve in various roles within your organization is

complex. This task becomes more difficult when looking for individuals with diverse

experiences and backgrounds. In this session we will learn about techniques and free sources to boost your recruiting effectiveness! Review best practices in recruiting, sourcing, and HR branding; how to target extremely specific resources and comb through social media sites; and how to locate new organizations and job boards. You may even pick-up a few helpful internet navigation and search tricks along the way!


9.  Managing Difficult Employees and Employee Misconduct: From Reporting to Investigation to Outcome

Nancy L. Mullett., Attorney, Clark Hill PLC, Grand Rapids, MI

While the lack of civility has always existed in the workplace, it has reached critical levels—it’s wreaking havoc

and causing harm in the workplace. Studies show an uncivil workplace will result in low levels of morale and

productivity. Left unchecked, the lack of civility can result in increased employee misconduct and disruptive

behavior. This session will provide a road map for creating a culture of civility and practical tips for managing

those difficult employees. Explore how to address difficult employee behavior and build a productive workplace that people want to be a part of. Specific objectives include:

  • What does an ‘uncivil workplace” look like?

  • Identify the difference between difficult and toxic employees

  • Role of social media in perpetuating uncivil behavior

  • How small uncivil actions lead to increased disruptive behaviors

  • A-Z of managing difficult employees:  Reporting to investigation to discipline to training

  • What role do you play?

  • The cost of uncivility.

  • Where do you start to create a culture of civility?



10. An Educator’s Guide to Preventing Harassment/Bullying and Protecting LGBTQ Rights

Eve Masinter, Attorney, Breazeale Sachse & Wilson, LLP, New Orleans, LA

Matt McCluer, Attorney, Breazeale Sachse & Wilson, LLP, New Orleans, LA

This presentation will focus on the rising problem of harassment and bullying in schools, particularly

in light of emerging concepts of LGBTQ culture, identity and expression, the applicable legal frame-

works under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964,

and recommendations to minimize exposure and effectively address harassment complaints by students and employees.


                                                                    11. Labor Relations and Negotiation Do’s and Don’ts

                                                                  Laura Preston, Legislative Advocate, Association of CA School Administrators,

                                                                  Sacramento, CA

                                                                  Terilyn Finders, Director of Communication & Legislative Affairs, Fagen, Friedman &                                                                                    Fulfrost LLP Administrators, Oakland, CA

                                                                  Namita Brown, Attorney, Fagen, Friedman & Fulfrost LLP, Oakland, CA

California is home to the strongest labor union in the country, the CA Teachers Association, and the first US Supreme Court case challenging fair share fees, Friedrich’s vs CTA.  There has been an increase in difficult labor negotiations along with numerous new laws to protect school district union members resulting from the fair share cases.  This pre-conference session will be divided into three parts: (1) What to anticipate legislatively from your unions in a post-Janus vs. ASFME environment; (2) What to do and what not to do for effective negotiations; and (3) Communication strategies between your school district, employees, parents, and community during difficult labor negotiations.   



12. Top Legal Trends and Sticky Human Resources Situations to Know in 2019

Shelli Anderson, Attorney & Partner, Franczek P.C., Chicago IL

Jackie Wernz, Attorney & Partner, Franczek P.C., Chicago IL
This presentation will address emerging legal trends and challenging personnel issues that every

human resources professional should know in 2019. The attorney presenters will use a fast-paced,

scenario-based program with ample audience participation. From recent and pending Supreme

Court decisions impacting public school employees, the “Education Spring,” and the impact of

teacher shortages, to arming teachers, collective bargaining, accommodating disabilities, and transgender rights, we will hit the high points on a variety of personnel topics, improving participants’ ability to spot and minimize legal risks and provide effective leadership in their school districts.