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The countdown to Workshop 2023 is on. Last year’s event was a resounding success. As the first New Jersey School Boards Association conference held in person since the beginning of the pandemic, Workshop 2022 surpassed all expectations. Dedicated education professionals from various parts of New Jersey eagerly attended, seeking valuable training, engaging learning opportunities, inspiring keynote speeches and practical tools to implement within their districts.

This year, get ready to experience a Workshop that is bigger and better than ever. NJSBA has new features in store for you this time around. The theme for Workshop 2023 is “Today’s Students … Tomorrow’s Superheroes,” emphasizing the influence students have in creating a better future for us all through the power of education.

Read on to discover how you can unlock your superhero abilities at Workshop 2023, and all the incredible events and sessions you can look forward to Oct. 23-26 at the Atlantic City Convention Center. 

Workshop 2023 Keynote Speaker

The New Jersey School Boards Association is honored to welcome two-time Olympic gold medalist and two-time Women’s World Cup champion Carli Lloyd as the keynote speaker for Workshop 2023. Born and raised in New Jersey, Lloyd is an alumna of Delran High School and Rutgers University. Her educational and athletic achievements at home helped launch her soccer career on the international stage, where she won numerous awards and broke records across the globe.

In her everyday life, Lloyd is a role model who empowers and inspires others to be better every day. She runs her own CL10 Soccer Clinics for children ages 8-18. The bestselling author of “When Nobody Was Watching,” she empowers audiences to find their own success with lessons from both in and beyond the world of sports.

Lloyd is a superhero on and off the field and is a true embodiment of the Workshop 2023 theme, “Today’s Students … Tomorrow’s Superheroes.” She is a testament to what can happen when a student is given the proper tools and support to soar. She will speak at Workshop on Oct. 25. 

Training Opportunities at Workshop

Workshop 2023 will offer more than 200 sessions throughout the convention center. With new options, traditional favorites and expanded training for every member of your district team, there are opportunities for everyone.

New this year!

Immersive Learning Lab Classroom Sessions These new 45-minute sessions will provide learning tools and an engaging and immersive educational experience.

Experiential Learning Labs This new feature enables attendees to take the knowledge they have gained from sessions in the classrooms and further explore topics through hands-on learning on the exhibit floor. 

ISTE Certification Kickoff Through a new partnership with ISTE, educators can kick off their ISTE certification at Workshop 2023. More details will be forthcoming through the Workshop website and NJSBA publications. 

Power Skills Arena This new destination, on the exhibit floor, provides an interactive opportunity for school leaders to bring “power skills” back to their districts, including communication, adaptability, creativity and empathy. 

Workshop Favorites

Action Labs are designed to teach best practices while engaging the audience. These 90-minute sessions will be limited to 48-60 people to allow for a more interactive, hands-on experience for attendees. Seating is available on a first-come basis. Board members can earn one Board Member Academy credit per attended Action Lab. Action Lab topics will be announced soon.

Group Sessions are one-hour long sessions given in a lecture style, featuring a panel of experts or multiple presenters. This format allows for active listening and an opportunity to ask questions at the end. Group Session topics will be announced soon. 

Mandated Training Workshop 2023 will offer training for new school board members and charter school trustees in their first year of office with a session of Governance I on Monday, Oct. 23. In-person, interactive training sessions add richness to the board member-trainer relationship. Visit workshop.njsba.org to see when Governance II-IV programs will be offered. Board members who attend mandated training at Workshop must be registered separately for the mandated training session.

Fall School Law Forum Back by popular demand, the Fall School Law Forum will be held  Thursday, Oct. 26. Practicing school board attorneys will share research and their own experiences in addressing the latest court decisions, administrative rulings, statutes, and codes that affect public education and school district governance. (There is a separate fee and registration for the Fall School Law Forum. Check the NJSBA website for more information.) 

Professional Development Credits Board members will be eligible to earn Board Member Academy credits at Workshop 2023. These credits can be used to earn board member certifications. NJSBA has also been authorized to issue Qualified Purchasing Agent credits for school business administrators and professional development credits for certified educational facilities managers. Details will be available in the Workshop mobile app.

Exhibit Floor Features

The exhibit floor will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 24 and Wednesday, Oct. 25. Featuring hundreds of exhibitors, the exhibit floor will provide an easy forum for learning about the latest in educational products and services.

New Features

NJSBA is also bringing plenty of fun to Workshop 2023 with opportunities to play interactive games with your district team.

Jeopardy America’s most-watched game show is coming to the Workshop 2023 exhibit floor! Test your knowledge of school leader trivia and other fun topics. Information on participating will be forthcoming. 

BOARDWalk Stop by for popcorn, games, and old-time boardwalk fun. This new feature is a welcome respite from a long day of training.

Treasure Hunt Forget about the old stamp cards of treasure hunts from the past. This new interactive Treasure Hunt, delivered through the Workshop app, helps you navigate the exhibit floor and tracks your progress along the way. 

NJSBA Services Area This one-stop shop is the hub for all things NJSBA. Members are encouraged to drop in and learn about the products and services available to districts as part of their NJSBA membership. Chat with NJSBA staff about anything – school policy, governance, labor relations, superintendent searches and more. The NJSBA Services area is also the destination for Workshop ribbons and giveaways — as well as a spot to obtain free lunch tickets.

County Café Attendees can take a well-deserved break from the excitement of Workshop at the CDI County Café, located conveniently on the exhibit floor. Relax, grab a snack and network with fellow education leaders and school officials before heading back out to explore Workshop further.

Award Ceremonies 

New this year, Workshop 2023 will feature an awards stage, featuring awards ceremonies, student performances and other events. 

Association Awards Cheer on the School Board Member of the Year, the Superintendent of the Year, the School Business Administrator of the Year and the New Jersey Teacher of the Year. 

Unsung Superheroes Awards This new award program celebrates the invaluable contributions of school district staff in categories such as librarian/media specialist, coach/club adviser, school nurse, bus driver/aide, custodian/maintenance/building and grounds, cafeteria/food services, crossing guard, secretary/administrative assistant, paraprofessional/aide and school security personnel. These individuals work tirelessly behind the scenes, often without recognition or thanks, to ensure that our schools run smoothly and provide a safe and nurturing environment for our students.

Sustainable Jersey for Schools Awards Sustainable Jersey will announce the recipients of the 2023 Sustainable Jersey for Schools awards, which celebrate the outstanding schools and school districts setting the standard for sustainability excellence on Wednesday, Oct. 25. 

Student Talent

NJSBA will highlight the talents of New Jersey’s school students at Workshop 2023. 

STEAM Tank This year, the top three finalists in the elementary and middle school divisions in the popular STEAM Tank program are facing off live! The elementary school division will compete in front of a panel of expert judges on Tuesday, Oct. 24 from 9:30 – 11:30 a.m., and the middle school division will compete on Wednesday, Oct. 25 from 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. 

Student Film Showcase NJSBA, along with the Garden State Film Festival and the New Jersey Motion Picture and Television Commission, will screen “the Best of the Fest” student films. These films were recognized and featured in the 2022 Garden State Film Festival — one of the most prestigious film festivals in the United States. The showcase will be set up in true movie theater style with a big screen, popcorn machine, red carpet and red velvet stanchions and a stage. There will also be a Q&A session with students and the TV/film teachers who produced, directed and edited the films.

Student Performances With the importance of arts education in mind, Workshop 2023 will showcase some of the finest student performance groups in the state. Hear beautiful music and watch other artistic expressions on the exhibit floor. The student performance schedule will be listed in the Workshop mobile app.

Student Art Gallery NJSBA is partnering with Arts Ed NJ to feature an art gallery showcasing student artwork on the Exhibit Floor. The gallery includes artwork recognized for excellence by prestigious art programs, competitions and K-12 exhibits from around the state.

When you register for Workshop, you will be joining thousands of school leaders and affirming your commitment to public education. This year’s theme, “Today’s Students… Tomorrow’s Superheroes,” emphasizes the crucial role of education in shaping the future of our society, which all starts with children. Like superheroes, students have the potential to make a positive impact on the world and create a better future.

Attending Workshop helps education leaders actively invest in the education of today’s students. preparing those students to become tomorrow’s superheroes, equipped with the knowledge, skills and values needed to create a better world for all. Become a superhero in education by registering for Workshop today. Visit workshop.njsba.org to learn more about this year’s conference. 

Deryn Younger is Marketing Specialist for NJSBA.