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Monday, June 17, 2019

Value of Conference Themes: Part III

Given the DKG vision statement—"Leading Women Educators Impacting Education Worldwide”—how appropriate that the fifth and final international conference theme is global awareness. As technology has broken down physical barriers, allowing educators to expand the experiences of their students beyond classroom walls, the need to understand diversity, learn about other cultures, and recognize one’s place in the world at large—i.e., the need for global awareness--has intensified. If DKG members are indeed going to impact education worldwide, they must be ready to help students develop and embrace such awareness, and, if they are to lead young people effectively, they must develop and embrace such awareness themselves. Thus, like the other conferences, the international conference on global awareness will serve a dual purpose of expanding members’ personal and professional growth even as it helps them to promote excellence in education.

It does not escape me, furthermore, that one of the key benefits of the five international conferences in 2019 is that they will go a long way to increasing the international flavor of the Society as a leader in education. As noted in an earlier blog, regions were developed as a structural element at a time when travel and communication were far more limited than they are today, and, as members recognized by approving more than 100 amendments to the governing documents at the recent international convention, sometimes structures begin to become ends in themselves. Each of the upcoming conferences will provide broader opportunities for networking across regions rather than simply within regions. Focused on a key theme at each conference, that networking will also be richer as one connects with colleagues of similar professional interests and concerns. Such an emphasis on purposes over place and on professionalism over parochialism will ensure that we meet the vision of impacting education worldwide and that we are forward moving ever.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Rumor has it…

 Rumor has it that a member must have a Ph.D. or Ed.D. in order to be nominated to serve at the highest levels of the Society. This is absolutely NOT TRUE. Educational levels play a part of the decision, but service to the Society is a better indicator of predictable success in elected positions. When you hear the rumor about a member needing a doctoral degree - you can say “Not true!”

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Making an Impact, Part III

How can we, as educators, impact legislation, whether at the local, county/parish, state or federal levels? Furthermore, can we have an impact on legislation?  Remember to call, write, e-mail, text, and visit your representatives. When your Congressional Representative or Senator is home from Washington, be sure to attend updates and visit the local office to let it be known that you are interested and care about issues and policies dealing with women, children and education. Head to the state capitol building for lobby days if your school district or city has them. Stay in contact.
Steve Tobak (CBS Interactive News August 9, 2011) talks about “a ripple effect that, over time, can actually impact thousands over generations.” Further, he posits “a broadening effect since one person influences many, like multiplying tree branches.” We as women and educators can make hundreds of ripples and impact thousands, over weeks, months, years and generations to come.
We can also broaden one person’s (legislator’s) experience, deepening it, and causing it to influence others in his/her circle. Let’s strive to influence others to support our causes, so they in turn will impact others in their circles of influence, who will then impact others. Let’s strive to deepen our legislators’ understanding of issues important to us. It takes time and commitment, but it will be worth it for our children, our profession, and our collective health and well-being. Of course, the ultimate answer for anyone who’s gotten “charged up” by political discussions and elections is that person should run for office.

Friday, June 7, 2019

Make Plans to Focus on DKG’s Schools for Africa Project

Spring and summer are the times when chapters start planning for the next year.  One of the more challenging tasks is finding quality programs which appeal to various groups of members:  new teachers, seasoned teachers, and retired teachers.  When making your plans this year, why not schedule a program which focuses on DKG’s Schools for Africa project?  In partnership with the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the Society provides an opportunity for members to support sub-Saharan schools in various areas:  training teachers, providing educational materials for students, educating children re: proper hygiene, building and improving schools and equipment, and so much more!
            The DKG website has a wealth of information about the Schools for Africa project.   After logging in, click on the Programs/Projects heading and choose Schools for Africa from the drop-down menu.   Among the things you’ll find are Schools for Africa Newsettes which include program ideas,  PowerPoint presentations which could be used as part of a chapter program,  a FAQ section,  a link to the DKG Schools for Africa at UNICEF site, and a donation flyer.
            Why not expand your chapter’s work internationally?  Investigate the many good things that your chapter can accomplish through its support of DKG’s Schools for Africa project.  You’ll be glad you did!

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Learning the New Electronic Dues Process

“The process of sending in our dues was impressively easy. When I first heard it would be an electronic process this time, I was a bit concerned since I am not real computer savvy. Thanks to excellent tutorials and detailed explanations from international and our state organization treasurer, it was a smooth transition from paper/pencil reporting to electronic reporting.”
Sheralee Boe, Nu Chapter treasurer

Training for chapter treasurers took place at the 2019 Nebraska State Convention. International President Cathy P. Daugherty held the group’s attention as treasurers learned of the new electronic dues process.

The training began with clarification of the dues payment aligning with the fiscal year (July 1 through June 30). This follows the amendments adopted during the 2018 convention. June 30th is the new deadline for paying 2019-2020 membership dues.

Treasurers then were instructed on how to connect via MyDKG to their chapter membership rosters. Through the use of a Power Point presentation, treasurers learned how to process dues electronically. Chapter treasurers learned they will also be able to update membership records electronically.

State Treasurer Dr. Margie Nowak was able to provide clarification on certain points as state organization treasurers had been provided the opportunity to utilize the training videos in advance.

Many hands were in the air for the concluding question and answer session, but chapter treasurers walked away with a very positive reaction to the changes. “I finally got up the courage to tackle the new treasurer procedure. Thank you for your wonderful directions. Anyway, I think I can do it. The real work now is to get dues collected, and I'm getting on it. Thanks so much for your guidance and encouragement.”
Jeanne Walter, Rho Chapter treasurer


Through the years the Leadership Management Seminar, now known as DKG: Ignite, has taken on several redesigns. In the beginning years, the seminar was held each year, but cost constraints limited it to being held as a pre- or post-convention seminar, as it is today. The length and extra activities have varied over time while the curriculum has not reflected changing trends in the field. Through studying the overall program and the cost of maintaining the program as it is, the 2018-2020 Golden Gift Fund Committee’s findings show the program is not sustainable for the future without major changes.

The committee has discussed ways to maintain the quality of the program and provide for sustainability. These considerations include:
  • Focus on members active in leadership roles or pursuing leadership roles
  • Reduce the program from two weeks to one
  • Remove activities that do not support the program
  • Recuse the number of participants from 30 to 20
  • Include short evening sessions that focus on the Society and/or participant well-being
  • Provide a curriculum designed for 21st Century leader.  One that …
    • provides insight into new ways of exercising leadership
    • utilizes effective strategies to address the extraordinary demands placed on leaders today
    • supports ethics, values and principles.

The committee believes these changes will enhance and enrich the training for our future leaders.

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