Custom On-Site Workshops

Bring a customized, facilitated board learning workshop directly to your district. IASB will work with your governance team to design a workshop just for you, based on your board development goals and district needs. Popular topics are below, but each workshop emphasizes application to your specific situation. Most workshops are two to four hours and can be scheduled on weekdays, evenings or Saturdays at your convenience.

Fees:  Fees vary based on the length of the workshop. Costs cover the workshop and all materials for your board/superintendent team.   
In Person


1/2 hour 
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1 hour
2 hours   $450 $350
3 hours
$600 $475
4 hours $750
5 hours+ 
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Contact IASB  

Note: No additional fee is charged for facilitator travel to your site.

Partner with a neighbor: IASB can also design workshops for multiple boards wishing to learn together. Invite a neighboring district or two to take part with your board. Workshops that include other school boards in your region are done at a reduced fee for each board.

Call IASB to schedule a workshop. Facilitators vary based on the topic. Start by emailing Emily Rhodes or calling (515) 247-7046. Emily will connect you to an IASB facilitator based on your topic.

10 Better Boardsmanship credits are awarded to participants in workshops facilitated by IASB staff.


Popular Topics

In this custom session, an IASB facilitator helps the board/superintendent team identify and discuss the different roles and responsibilities of school board members and the superintendent. The IASB facilitator will provide information and research on effective practices to enhance the discussions. The board/superintendent team uses these insights to build a strong, shared understanding of how each governance team member contributes to the district through their appropriate role.

Is your district ready to begin the strategic planning process? This experience will support the board/superintendent team as they initiate the first phase of the strategic planning process: revising or creating the district's mission and vision and identifying goal areas for the district to pursue over the next three to five years. Workshops are typically two hours each—choose between one, two or three separate sessions depending on district needs. Sessions can focus on the board/superintendent team only or can include administration, staff, parents and community members. Additional sessions on data analysis and action planning are also available and can be added to complete the strategic planning process. The cost is customized based on the number of sessions, participants and facilitators involved. 

This board workshop is designed to bring the board team together to articulate a clear vision for the future of their district and determine central beliefs that influence the decision-making process for the district. The program can be extended to creating a mission statement and/or goals for the district. The facilitator will provide a framework that allows the board to develop its vision and goals in an atmosphere that allows free expression of opinions and ideas.

Board/superintendent teams looking to strengthen their focus on student learning at the board table would benefit from this workshop. Participants can select entry points such as, data study, student learning goals, or understanding and supporting key initiatives. An IASB facilitator will consult with your district’s board leadership and superintendent to determine an effective starting place. These workshops are developed based on effective practices for board teams influenced by IASB’s ground-breaking Lighthouse Research and other studies on school board leadership.

The options for workshops regarding student learning range from a single introductory session to a series of workshops conducted over the course of several months. IASB staff works with your team to define the option that will be the 'best fit.'

This workshop series is an intensive five-session commitment for the whole governance team to strengthen their role for improved teaching and student learning. Research shows that school boards who are well-informed with a strong belief system can positively influence student learning in their districts. Studies by IASB and other organizations have identified important leadership and policy-level roles for the school board in improving student learning. IASB is partnering with local board/superintendent teams to support their efforts in this work through this in-depth workshop series.

Fees: One board: $425 per workshop (5 workshops) + $425 for survey report and support. Reduced price if multiple boards from your region participate together.

As the governance team, it's the board's duty to establish a vision of high expectations for every child. In this workshop, an IASB facilitator will help the board/superintendent team create a customized visionary statement designed to inspire and elevate learning, provide direction and support sound policy and decision making.

Governance teams are most effective when they foster a positive culture focused on improving instruction and student learning. An IASB facilitator will provide three to four self-assessment options and help the board identify the tool that best matches current needs.

During the workshop, an IASB facilitator guides the board team through a discussion of their compiled self-assessment data. The team focuses on what they are doing well and areas they would like to improve. This session can also include the board using results of the self-assessment to establish goals and key indicators of progress to improve performance and create accountability.

Is your team interested in enhancing the superintendent evaluation process? In this customized board workshop, an IASB facilitator will lead your team’s learning and discussion on key areas of superintendent evaluation including legal requirements, the state’s standards for school leaders, tools/practical tips and effective practices.

Options for this work include:

  • Reviewing district policy.
  • Re-visiting the district’s superintendent evaluation instrument.
  • Determining a process to set superintendent goals and key indicators of progress.
  • Establishing a plan for progress reports during the year.
  • Identifying a process for regular board feedback to the superintendent on goals.
  • Preparing for the end of the year, summary superintendent evaluation.
  • Using information from superintendent summary evaluation to set next year’s goals.
  • Determining other steps the board/superintendent team believes will be helpful.

This workshop is designed to assist boards whether they want to explore possibilities for sharing with nearby districts, or their district is already engaged in sharing with other districts. The focus is to identify common interests, goals, concerns and to develop specific techniques to help boards communicate and work together. These sessions can also be designed for boards engaging in reorganization discussions.

Since sharing is highly situational, IASB staff work with board leadership and superintendents to design support that will best fit district needs. IASB facilitators can lead workshops involving single board/superintendent teams, pairs, or multiple teams.

What is the board’s role in working with and guiding district staff? How does the board's role compare to that of the superintendent? How can your board/superintendent team work from your respective roles to create a culture of excellence and innovation that focuses the school community on student learning?

In this custom session, an IASB consultant will work the board/administrative team to help you understand your role in establishing instructional leadership that reflects the goals and vision of the board.

Sound written board policy clarifies the goals and intent of the board. In this custom session, an IASB consultant works with the board/administrative team to understand the board’s policy-making role, strengthen your policy development and maintenance practices, identify policies most relevant to your district’s current goals and needs and ensure your policies align with state and federal laws.

An IASB staff member will facilitate a customized review of your district’s financial condition, based on your own data and trends, and help the board/superintendent team consider appropriate oversight and decision points to address the district’s financial condition. IASB staff will work with the board, either at a board meeting or a board work session, to understand your district’s finances. Free for the first consultation. IASB can also provide a half-day session one-on-one with a district’s new superintendent or school business official to support these key administrators in gaining knowledge of Iowa school funding laws, processes and the district’s current financial condition.

To have a say in the legislative process, your board needs voice. In this session, an IASB staff member will work with your board to develop an advocacy action plan customized to your school district. You’ll focus on specific issues facing your district and construct an advocacy plan based on maximizing efforts that will have the greatest impact in persuading your elected officials. The workshop can take a broad view on advocacy, or dig deep on a specific advocacy practice, such as legislator relations, community engagement, social media communications and more.

Establishing a Strong Foundation: If your superintendent is new to your district, IASB can help your team establish the foundation for a strong working relationship. An IASB facilitator will work with your board and superintendent leadership to develop a customized workshop to help your team set the stage for a successful school year. Popular topics for this workshop include areas such as: board-superintendent communications, operating practices, roles and responsibilities, expectations, or goals.

Can’t Find a Custom Board Workshop That Matches for Your Team’s Needs?
Please contact IASB to talk with a facilitator about your team’s needs and explore possibilities/options. An IASB facilitator will help design a workshop that fits your board and superintendent team’s specific needs or put you in contact with a colleague who can assist!