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Annual Spring Conference

May 3-5, 2018
Park Central Hotel, San Francisco, CA

It’s WBSA Spring Conference time again! WBSA returns to The City by the Bay, San Francisco.

This time we meet at the Park Central, San Francisco, Westin Hotel’s premier conference site, located in the SOMA – South of Market district, the City’s central business and tourism hub. To reserve your room at the Park Central, go to: Park Central San Francisco Room Reservation Link. The deadline to reserve your room is April 2, 2018.

Our dates are Thursday afternoon, May 3rd through Saturday Morning, May 5th. Here is the registration form for the conference. Please complete the form and return it by April 26, 2018.

We begin on Thursday afternoon with a screening of the film, Maineland followed by a discussion with the Director, Maio Wang.

MAINELAND is the first film to look at the enormous wave of Chinese students studying in the U.S. and the sociocultural impact this “parachute generation” is having on schools, families, and local communities.

MAINELAND invites discussion around the expectations that Chinese families and students have about America, the “culture shock” they often experience on arriving, and how schools and teachers can work together with local and international students to help foster cross-cultural understanding and build resources for mutual dialogue and acclimation. View the trailer here.

After a night on the town, Friday morning, we hear from Dr. Teri Solichek, who will keynote the conference. Her topic will deal with anxiety that teens experience in today’s world.

Anxiety disorders affect one in eight children. With this level of prevalence, boarding schools need to understand anxiety and what it may look like in different individuals. It is important to be able to screen for anxiety in the admissions process, understand what your particular school may or may not be able to manage, how anxiety may be manifest in students to aid you in identifying current students who may be struggling, and what supports can be put in place to help even typical students.

Later, we will hear from Mark Mitchell with NAIS on the topic of the Changing Landscape of Financial Aid, John Williamson on the International Market, Steve Henderson from the Chartwell School on testing issues and the day will conclude with remarks by Christina Dotchin from the Enrollment Management Association on parent survey results.

Saturday will be our annual business meeting and a working breakfast with Peter Upham from TABS with an update on NABI for all WBSA members. The conference will conclude with a session led by Shane Whalley, from the Steve Hicks School of Social Work at the University of Texas, Austin. Shane will touch on the topic of transgender students leading to a fruitful dialogue how best to work with and incorporate transgender students in our boarding school communities.

Saturday afternoon will give us time to enjoy the sights and ambiance of San Francisco. Later, we will travel to the Town School for their annual reception and opportunities to chat with admissions colleagues participating in the Boarding School Fair on Sunday.

Sunday evening will conclude with the Boarding School panel for peninsula families. Certainly, a busy couple of days for WBSA. We look forward to seeing you in San Francisco.

Western Boarding Schools Association
Steering Committee

Kristen, Tyler, Lawrence, Susie, Bernadette, Jamie, Kila and Al