Dear NJSBA Member,
After much analysis and deliberation, the New Jersey School Boards Association has made the difficult decision not to hold an in-person Workshop 2021. Instead, NJSBA will hold a virtual Workshop on Oct. 26-28, 2021.
This decision was based on data from our member survey, financial projections, and feedback from potential sponsors and exhibitors. If an in-person Workshop were to be held, the Workshop team has projected there would be a financial loss in excess of $100,000.
Among the contributing factors:
- Holding an in-person Workshop would be substantially more expensive. Among the additional costs: personal protective equipment for attendees, sponsors and exhibitors, and the expenses involved in additional cleaning and disinfection protocols.
- There is uncertainty concerning capacity limits in indoor venues in the fall. If NJSBA is forced to limit the number of participants at Workshop, it will affect the per-person costs.
- It is unclear how many of our members would feel comfortable attending an in-person Workshop. In a recent survey of our membership, a majority of respondents expressed reservations about attending an in-person conference.
- In addition, our sponsors and exhibitors are wary about committing to a conference with such uncertainty over attendance.
Nonetheless, we remain committed to meeting the professional development needs of school leaders.
A Virtual Conference with New Features Last year, NJSBA held a highly successful virtual conference, which attracted approximately 6,000 participants, provided 100 training sessions and featured 140 exhibitors.
This year, the Association is planning a conference that provides the training, resources and networking features from last year and adds additional opportunities for engagement and interaction. Registration for virtual Workshop 2021 will open on May 17.
NJSBA is grateful for your commitment to the success of Workshop, and we look forward to your participation in our exciting virtual conference. Support for New Jersey’s local boards of education, educational leaders, and public school students remains our top priority.
We wish you continued health and safety.
Mike R. McClure
Dr. Lawrence S. Feinsod