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Woodberry Forest School Twists and Turns to Unexpected Outcomes

The Woodberry Forest School team entered the MISBO + IDEO Project with great interest and hope that an intensive design thinking experience would yield meaningful results. While the path of the experience took several unexpected turns from what we envisioned at the start, the results exceeded our expectations! As noted by the IDEO team, that is often what happens in design thinking-based projects.

For readers that may not know Woodberry Forest School, we are an all-boys, all-boarding independent school located on 1,200 acres in the country about 30 miles northeast of Charlottesville, Virginia. With a new strategic plan endorsed by the board of trustees and the successful completion of the school’s 10-year self-study and accreditation by the Southern Association of Independent Schools, Byron Hulsey, Head of School, and our executive leadership team launched into the MISBO + IDEO Project in a very traditional independent school mindset. We know we have a great product, we’ve tested it against our own experience and values, and the wisdom of this work has been blessed by our peers. Our next steps were to effectively communicate to donors and prospective families regarding Woodberry’s value proposition. A feasibility study indicated a high level of general support to the school by alumni and friends of the school. And certainly, prospective families should see that the value of a Woodberry experience is well worth the $55,600 tuition.

Improved messaging would help address the stiffening competition for a shrinking pool of full-pay prospective families. So our MISBO + IDEO Project team brought the idea of implementing a longitudinal study of alumni, similar to Harvard’s longitudinal study of happiness, to IDEO as our “experiment.” The intent of this study would be to explore how Woodberry Forest affects the lives of its alumni; how that is or is not different for different age cohorts; what graduates take away from their high school experience and which of those lessons serve them best in the future; how their values and career paths and ambitions change over time; and critically, what they feel they lacked in their formative high school years.

However, when our team arrived at the first project workshop we were turned on our heads with mind-clearing exercises and the rigor of the “5 Why’s” exercise. Why were we really interested in the longitudinal study? Why? Why? Why? Why? Ultimately, we concluded that a core reason why we were embarking on the longitudinal study is that we are greatly concerned about the affordability of our school. Further, we are greatly concerned about how affordability is playing a more significant role in shaping the nature of boys enrolled than the administration feels will be healthy for the school long-term.

We asked ourselves, “how could our school, with its rich history of transforming boys into young men of character, located on a beautifully manicured campus nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, and equipped with facilities designed specifically to offer adolescent boys experiences they never dreamed of, feel so vulnerable?” We strongly believe that the call for leadership, including young men equipped with the skills, the emotional intelligence, and empathy to make positive differences in their local communities and the world at large, has never been louder. This has historically been Woodberry’s sweet spot, and we have been at it for over a hundred years.

Yet, without dorms full of engaged boys, a school with state-of-the-art facilities, $300 million in endowment resources, and a faculty who are poised to get to know and challenge each boy will no longer be the school it once was, nor will we succeed in fulfilling our shared future vision.

It was at this juncture that our IDEO/MISBO team pivoted and focused our attention on the central issue of affordability. Can we make affordability the primary basis for a fundraising campaign in support of financial assistance? What will be the most successful communications strategy in telling the story about why Woodberry’s future financial stability will be dependent on raising significant new endowment funds in support of financial assistance?

Our energy turned away from the longer-term alumni study project, which we believe still has significant merit, to the immediate priority of framing the case for a capital campaign. Through further research regarding the size of our full-pay market – estimated to be 0.19% of households in our five-state region – and testing messaging with alumni regarding their impressions of financial assistance, we effectively turned from an administrative team focused on our school and what is important to us, to a team focused on our parents and alumni and what is important to them. This simple shift, an orientation central to design thinking work, helped us realize that it is not what we charge (in tuition) that is driving our financial model, it’s what prospective parents are able and willing to pay that is shaping and will dictate the future of our financial model.

Our team developed a renewed commitment to the long-term business model challenge of making Woodberry more affordable. We are endeavoring to take the issue of price off the table as a potential barrier to enrolling best-fit boys. This message was shared with the board of trustees at our May meeting along with supporting information regarding the relationship between Woodberry’s dramatic increase in “real cost” and the corresponding increases in unfunded financial aid. Fully funding financial aid quickly became our shared objective.

With the support of the board, a substantial endowment campaign in support of financial assistance is being planned and internal communications are under way regarding the issue of affordability and the importance of ongoing expense control.

In reflection, I believe the IDEO-led experience helped Woodberry in two very important ways. First, it created a sense of urgency. We had a window in which to articulate a plan, design it, execute it, and assess the results. Without clear deadlines, long-term strategy work often gets pushed aside. Secondly, the methodology forced us to look at the school from a new perspective, specifically our customers’ perspectives. We have gained a greater appreciation for the sacrifices and investments they are making on behalf of their sons to join the Woodberry family. Our schools are in partnerships with our families and affordability has started to become a barrier to new family partnerships and a source of unhealthy friction with current families.

Our work is far from being done. We continue to test and refine the messaging around affordability and are initiating design thinking working sessions with operations and maintenance staff intended to improve the transparency between their roles in addressing affordability. Affordability is a strategic imperative of equal importance to educational program quality; they are inseparable.

We feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with MISBO and IDEO. You can hear more about our experience through this project at the 2017 MISBO Fall Conference, where we will share more of our story.

Sincerely,

Ace Ellis
Chief Financial Officer
Woodberry Forest School

 

Hillbrook School Looks Back to Leap Forward

How do we reimagine the independent school business model? The critical importance of this question for independent schools drew us into the MISBO + IDEO Project. What feels like an increasingly untenable dependence upon skyrocketing tuition, expanding tuition assistance budgets, and philanthropy leaves us anxious about the long-term viability of the independent school business model, and we were eager to join a cohort who was willing to look this challenge in the eye and imagine alternative solutions. As a school that has utilized design thinking consistently for the past six to seven years to implement all types of changes, from reimagined learning spaces to a leading-edge resident teacher program, we were thrilled that we would have an opportunity to turn our attention to this important challenge.

To be completely candid, as we finished the project in May, I was disappointed by the progress we had made. There was little evidence that a new business model was emerging. And yet, as I reflect back a few months later on the process and on the work we did as a school, I am reminded that resolving big questions – in this case, perhaps the big question for the long-term survival of independent schools – happens through fits and starts and small-scale experimentation that yields unexpected results. No, we did not create a new business model, but we did explore some possibilities and push our thinking in ways that leave us as a school – and I hope an industry – better prepared to pivot and shift in the years ahead.

Our experiment connected to the school’s strategic initiative to reimagine the student experience. We are deeply committed to creating real-world, project-based learning experiences for students that reach beyond our campus and challenge our students to make a difference in the world. We are looking to build upon our longstanding and successful service learning program by finding ways to more fully integrate these experiences into the day-to-day learning for all children. As a school nestled on a 14 acre campus in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains, however, getting our students into the community is not easy. One solution? A satellite campus space located in downtown San Jose, the heart of Silicon Valley. And yet, living in one of the most expensive real estate markets in the world, we are not in a position to simply purchase a second campus. So we looked around and found an innovative alternative – utilizing space at a WeWork location, a global company that provides access to shared workspaces. The cost is relatively low, the terms extremely flexible (month-to-month rentals), and it had the added bonus of connecting us with what WeWork terms a “global network of creators.”

The timing of the MISBO + IDEO Project was fortuitous, as we had just secured a space at WeWork San Jose and we were looking for a way to jumpstart the project. So we decided to create an experiment that involved getting students into the space and seeing what happened. We took five middle school students to WeWork on a Friday, set up snacks at the tables in the public gathering space, and invited entrepreneurs to sit with them and tell their stories. The results were beyond what we had expected.

One moment in particular captured the excitement and possibility of this experience. At that moment, one pair of students and Director of Teaching & Learning Ilsa Dohmen were talking to Robert, an entrepreneur who was showing them a new intubator he had designed and the pitch deck he was developing to help tell the story. Another student was talking to Phil, a serial entrepreneur who was sharing advice about how he hires, noting that experience in the arts is as important as experience in math and science for a successful innovator. As he put it, “technical skills are good, but creativity is essential.” Another pair of students was talking with the founding Director of our Scott Center for Social Entrepreneurship, imagining the possibilities for this space for future student groups. And, finally, I was talking with Evan, the Community Manager for WeWork San Jose. A graduate of a local independent school, Evan had eagerly supported the concept of having students at WeWork and had worked with our Director of Technology Bill Selak to coordinate the visit. At that moment, she was talking about the multiple connections she has in downtown San Jose, with everyone from the mayor to leaders of local non-profits and businesses, and how she was eager to help Hillbrook connect with them.

So what did we learn? We learned:

  • Entrepreneurs were willing to share their stories with our students, and our students were able to connect with and clearly communicate with adults.
  • Small groups of students in an urban environment works really well. One student commented, “This is the best field trip ever!”
  • Entrepreneurs tell a compelling story about the skills students need for success in life, a story that reaffirms the importance of the type of education we are offering to students.
  • The WeWork team is an invaluable resource for us as we look to develop partnerships with Silicon Valley companies, non-profits, and leaders.
  • We are part of the “global network of creators” WeWork supports. They value our engagement, as much as we value the opportunity to be part of their community.

We left inspired and excited about what we had done, and, yet, as I noted earlier, we realized that we had played to our strengths – developing engaging learning experiences for students – without really making obvious progress vis a vis our ultimate goal of creating new business models. And yet, the seeds of possibility are there. We are already asking how we can build upon this experience to expand the type of programming we offer and to explore partnerships which before now had seemed challenging if not impossible. And perhaps most importantly, we proved that we can build a satellite campus in an urban space at a minimal cost. In the months ahead, we will continue to do small experiments at WeWork and, in the process, we hope to continue to push our thinking and discover things we had not known before.

Mark Silver, Head of School
Hillbrook School

 

From the ED 8.3.17

BEYOND ORDINARY

Things that seem obvious are often the easiest to overlook. A basic truth about human development is that there is a first time to experience everything: first steps, first best friend, first day of school, first crush (and breakup), first time with a new language or a geometry proof or a dissection, first job – there is excitement and anxiety in the novelty of firsts.

Lev Vygotsky, an early 20th century psychologist, conceptualized the “zone of proximal development” (ZPD) as a bridge between learning and cognitive development. You could think of this as pushing beyond your comfort zone and be sort of correct. The prevailing theories tried to establish when and under what conditions learning and development take place: development precedes learning, learning and development occur at the same time, or learning and development are separate but interrelated.

According to Vygotsky, through the assistance of a more capable person, a child is able to learn skills or aspects of a skill that go beyond the child’s actual developmental or maturational level. The lower limit of ZPD is the level of skill reached by the child working independently… The upper limit is the level of potential skill that the child is able to reach with the assistance of a more capable instructor.

This summer, I took a bike ride with my older brother and about 1,000 of our closest friends. We rode a little over 360 miles in a week, about four or five hours per day. I had never done anything like this before and on the first day, my brother and I both rode more than we ever had at one time (I admit that I rethought many life decisions on several of the steeper hills). We got stronger throughout the week by drawing on the camaraderie and knowledge of the group, pushing beyond perceived limits, and drafting and pulling each other along the way.

Think of what is about to happen on your campus and throughout your classrooms. You have excited and anxious students and excited and anxious faculty members returning to your learning community or joining it for the first time. Their interaction with each other is the hallmark of what your school values and cherishes as it fulfills its mission. Your capable instructors will provide the assistance needed for students to develop and grow – just as you, as a capable leader in your school, will provide the assistance needed for your faculty and staff members to develop and grow.

There are numerous opportunities this fall for you to develop and grow: participating in webinars, networking with colleagues, engaging in list-servs, reading and circulating articles with your team, and attending conferences and workshops. MISBO has put together a fall conference that will intentionally push you to the edges of your zone of proximal development. The format is mostly deep-dive workshops into struggles we all face in independent schools today and the solutions we can find together: from legal and financial challenges, to space allocation and facility stewardship, to innovation and sustainability pressures. Passionate thinkers and capable practitioners throughout our community are facilitating these workshops and I challenge you to imagine, inspire, and innovate with us in New Orleans, October 4-6.

When you come up for air after ushering faculty and students onto campus and get through your start-of-the-school-year rituals, take some time to discover something new. Put yourself into a position where you will be as excited and anxious as the students and faculty and experience the empathy of the novelty of firsts at the 2017 MISBO Fall Conference.

Colorado Academy’s Journey

Can a Good Cup of Joe Reshape Learning?

Creighton Williams Abrams was a U.S. Army General who served in Vietnam, Korea, and World War II. Hailed even by General George Patton, Abrams was known as an aggressive and successful armor commander. The Army even named a battle tank after him. It is no surprise then, that Abrams is the author the oft-quoted statement, “When eating an elephant, take one bite at a time.”

And it is no surprise that today’s most innovative thinkers tackle dauntingly complex and complicated problems such as education reform with the same strategies as a battlefield commander. When it comes to education, one of the most innovative war strategy rooms is at IDEO, an international design and consulting firm that is currently partnering with education change makers to design the most innovative systems, tools, and experiences that will improve education.

Earlier this year, Colorado Academy became part of a cohort of 12 forward-thinking schools invited by MISBO to work with IDEO, to experiment with ways to re-engineer the private education business model and use the same creative approach to tackle a programmatic need in their respective schools.

CA tackled the question, “How might we make our libraries a more central part of a student’s experience?” Libraries – in schools and in towns and cities around the world – are on the forefront of retooling for the digital and mobile revolution, and they are transforming into very different spaces from the quiet book warehouses they once were.

CA Director of Libraries Allison Peters Jensen and Librarian Allie Bronston, along with Chief Financial Officer Alanna Brown and Head of School Dr. Mike Davis, spent time with IDEO this past year thinking about ways to transform the CA library experience. The idea is to help CA’s libraries be more integral to students’ discovery of and access to information. To answer the question, CA leaders were encouraged to apply the most successful and disruptive business models that are at the heart of some of today’s most innovative businesses, including Netflix, Airbnb, Amazon, Google, and Apple.

CA’s librarians have been:

  • Thinking about how libraries can be community centers in which we leverage more high-tech ways of connecting students to one another and to subject matter expertise
  • Thinking about how to develop signature student programs
  • Anticipating working more directly with faculty to give students more consistent instruction in developing research skills

Back to the elephant analogy. The first “bite” was to increase the number of students and teachers coming into the library. Key measures of that are both library visitors and circulation statistics. So, CA started with a known driver of foot traffic in the CA Upper School: a good cup of jitter juice.

For one week, librarians brought in a cappuccino coffee cart for three hours each morning; students and teachers could charge coffee to school accounts or pay in cash. Said the librarians, “We are encouraging students to spend a little time in the library enjoying coffee drinks, playing games, and sharing answers to the question, ‘What can our library become?’ We want to learn from students what they would like to see in their school library.” A bit gimmicky? Sure it is, but consider the results.

Foot traffic was at least doubled and, on some days, tripled with the presence of the coffee cart; the busiest day saw approximately 275 visitors. And it wasn’t just for the coffee. Library circulation increased every day, doubled most days, and even quadrupled on one day of the week.

Librarians are working on similar ideas for Lower and Middle School students. In the meantime, students provided a wealth of feedback during the experiment. Wrote one of the librarians, “This was the first step of many, and we foresee more similar experiments in the future. We enjoyed reading all of your feedback from last week, and we will work on how we can incorporate your ideas into the library as our reimagining of the library unfolds.” Said another, “Essentially, this experiment is intended to improve the experience of going to the library. More than ever, we need libraries to be spaces where connection, truth-seeking, curiosity, playfulness, and joy are protected and nurtured. That’s where we’re headed.”

My First From the ED 7.6.17

BEYOND ORDINARY

Damian Kavanagh, Ed.S., CAE, Executive Director

May 1 was Day 1. We walked down the Embarcadero in San Francisco to the IDEO office complex at Pier 28, taking in the morning and being passed by cyclists, skaters, runners, and those moving with greater urgency. The twelve schools that participated in the cohort group for the MISBO + IDEO Project would meet to soak in the IDEO culture, present on their projects, and receive consultations from IDEO team members. The weather was perfect. The view of the bay was exquisite. The engagement with educational leaders and a world class design firm was exceptional. I was privileged to be a part of it. How do you top that?

Throughout early May, I participated in the MISBO staff’s professional growth cycle by listening in on presentations of their goals for the year. This included a glance backwards to what was accomplished and what was still in progress from the previous cycle. They all possess a deep understanding of the mission and values of MISBO and an iron commitment to independent schools and to the individuals who enrich learning in those schools. Functional leadership is about process; transformational leadership is about people – I am honored to be working alongside these remarkable individuals who will lead me as much as I will lead them. How do you top that?

I have had numerous learning and growth opportunities recently that have invigorated me. The very successful MISBO Human Resources Intensive, beautifully hosted at Woodward Academy, drew more than 50 dedicated individuals who heard the latest trends, participated in breakout sessions and mentoring groups, and engaged with Yale University’s Director of the Center for Emotional Intelligence, Dr. Marc Brackett. I was with the excellent educators at the Atlanta International School for a workshop on intentional meeting planning strategies to encourage both measurable accountability and shared leadership; The Children’s School to help facilitate the Master Class in Inclusive Leadership; Kenston Forest School to lead a two-day board retreat; and Mount Paran Christian School to shadow and absorb everything I could (thank you for your patience with me!). From these experiences, I took away much more than I brought. How do you top that?

The MISBO search committee and board gave me one of the most cherished gifts there is: the gift of time. Marc Levinson and I have overlapped for the past two months, which has allowed me to observe and learn and grow prior to being thrown into the deep end. I am personally and professionally glad that Marc will remain on through October to navigate fiscal year-end processes and the 2017 MISBO Fall Conference, which is a one-of-a-kind offering of deep-dive workshops into the areas that matter most for school operations and school transformations. How do you top that?

Jeff Bezos has been in the news this summer for Amazon’s enormous purchase of Whole Foods, but he was in the news in April describing his “Day 1” mentality. The potential of the day stretches out in front and imbues decisions with the mindset that the day you plan for is the day in front of you. He has sparked a culture of resilient creativity and restless innovation that calls on his community to approach everything they do with fresh eyes, attentive ears, and open hearts. How do you top that? Not with day 2, of which he says, “Day 2 is stasis. Followed by irrelevance. Followed by excruciating, painful decline.” I enjoyed a Day 1 today and will enjoy another tomorrow. I hope that you fill your summer with many opportunities to celebrate your own Day 1.

My Final From the ED 6.1.17

Dear Colleagues,

I have been writing to all of you at least once a month for nearly the past six years. This is my last “From the ED.” As my time leading MISBO comes to an end, I have thought a great deal about the transformation of MISBO over that period of time. MISBO has been serving independent schools for over 41 years, beginning in Atlanta with a small group of business officers looking to connect with each other, save money by combining their purchasing power, and learn from each other. Today, MISBO continues this tradition and reinforces our mission: MISBO connects independent school professionals and delivers exceptional value to enrich learning.

This affirms the thinking of the founder, Ken White at The Westminster Schools in Atlanta, and the other leaders that first connected to get MISBO started. The prior mission statement noted “Southeast” and “business officers”; today MISBO serves about 350 school in 18 states. We are no longer just in the Southeast and we serve the entire school, which is evidenced by the over 2,500 independent school professionals that will receive this message today.

Today, MISBO continues to offer our member schools the only purchasing consortium designed and operated specifically for independent schools. MISBO staff listens to our members’ needs and collaborates with appropriate vendors to provide great value to your schools, from the smallest schools (less than 100 students) to our largest (nearly 3,000 students). The “power” of MISBO is the collaboration among our members that provides opportunities for schools of any size or type to participate and benefit.

We have developed a well-respected and valuable professional development program which offers programs and learning for a wide variety of independent school professionals including live events, webinars, and online resources; all designed to help you serve your school more effectively. I encourage you to attend the 2017 MISBO Fall Conference in New Orleans, LA, October 4-6. We have spent much of the last year working with IDEO and 12 cohort schools examining innovative ideas to transform the business model for independent schools through the MISBO + IDEO Project. The 2017 MISBO Fall Conference will provide an opportunity for you to learn from leaders of the participating schools as well as the IDEO team. I will be leading a couple of these workshops as well and hope to see many of you there.

The success of any organization is only possible with a strong team. For MISBO this means a devoted and talented staff whose focus is on service to you and your schools. It also means having a board of directors committed to leading the strategic direction of MISBO now and well into the future. I look back at the last six years and am very proud of the transformation of the MISBO Board of Directors. This group of dedicated volunteers represents all MISBO member schools. As with other changes, the board for 2017-2018 includes a diverse cross section of independent school leaders. For the coming year, the board will include seven business officers, three heads of schools, two technology directors, two human resources directors, one facilities director, one former business officer, one association executive, and one more whose position is more difficult to describe – a person who works with a group of six schools who are tied together. This wealth of knowledge is used to guide the MISBO staff and guide the future – always with member schools and your students in mind. This is the perfect opportunity for me to introduce the new board members who will begin their terms with MISBO on July 1st. I am so excited about the quality and diversity of this group; I wish I could be working with them:

These four were chosen from a large pool of very qualified candidates nominated to join the MISBO board. To me, this group of professionals represents the “power of MISBO” and the recognition we have received nationally in recent years. They are your representatives. Please reach out to them and the other board members with your thoughts, suggestions, comments, and complaints. MISBO can only get stronger with your help.

There are so many people I would like to thank and recognize for their contributions to MISBO and to me personally during my tenure as Executive Director. I want to acknowledge a few for now and hopefully you will join me in New Orleans for more. I would be remiss to not mention the contributions of Wendy Barnhart, former MISBO Board Chair and former Business Officer at The Westminster Schools. Wendy and I have been friends for many years and she served on the NBOA board when I was on staff with NBOA. She asked me for help as MISBO was struggling through a leadership transition, which ultimately led to my leadership of MISBO. Wendy’s vision for MISBO was much more than what existed at the time and I hope that she looks back with great pride on all of her contributions. Steven Wennerstrom, former Business Manager, Trinity Preparatory School, Winter Park, FL, followed Wendy’s leadership of the MISBO board. Steven supported and provided an amazing foundation for the board to begin working at a more generative level. Julie Ray, CFO, Mount Paran Christian School, Kennesaw, GA is the current MISBO Board Chair and will remain on the board for one more year as past chair. Julie had just joined the board when I joined MISBO. I could tell from day one that Julie was a force to be reckoned with and I immediately spoke with Wendy about asking Julie to take on a leadership role for MISBO. During Julie’s leadership over the past four years, MISBO has reinvented the board, restated its mission, rebranded, created its first vision, and grown to 350 member schools in 18 states (and DC). She also led the search for a new executive director and has been my friend and trusted ally for all of these years. I am sure some of you serve on boards. If you have not been a board chair of a large association, you may not appreciate the extreme commitment this takes; it is like having a second job. Thank you, Julie!!

I would also like to welcome Damian Kavanagh as the new Executive Director of MISBO. You can learn more about Damian’s background here. The MISBO board search committee asked me early on in the process for my thoughts about a new executive director. I expressed my desire to find a candidate that had both independent school leadership experience as well as independent school association leadership experience. That pool of possible people is not very large. I reached out to a number of colleagues to inquire about their interest. Damian, who was a VP at SAIS at the time, was clearly one of the top candidates and quickly rose to the top with the search committee. I am excited to see Damian step into this role and lead MISBO. We have already been working together for months to ensure a smooth transition for MISBO. I will continue to help Damian and the MISBO staff over the coming months and through the fall conference to make this leadership transition as seamless as possible for MISBO and, more importantly, for you.

I have thoroughly enjoyed this opportunity to be a part of the MISBO community. I have had the chance to visit many of your schools – I figure about half, or 175 schools, over the past six years. I wish I could have made it to all of them. Being at a school and seeing the work you do and seeing the result (the students that thrive because of your work) is the greatest reward for me. About a year ago when we announced that I was leaving MISBO, I said that I did not have a plan for what’s next. That remains the same today. I made a commitment to myself, the MISBO board and staff, and to you to be 100% devoted to MISBO during this past year. I suspect that after some time for relaxation and reflection I will begin to consider new opportunities for my future. For the moment, I plan to enjoy a much quieter summer and fall, spend time with my family, hike, bike, play tennis, etc.

For those of you that know me well, you know that I can write (and talk) about schools, education, etc. at length. I know this is a long message. If you have read this far, I wish you all the very best. You each have a significant role to play for the future of our children. Each and every person at each and every school is critically important to the success of your schools. Thank you for what you do every day.

Sincerely,
Marc

Marc Levinson
Executive Director, MISBO
marclevinson@misbo.com

We power independent schools.™

How Effective is your AED Program?

The information below is from MISBO Vendor AED Brands:

Implementing and maintaining an AED program goes beyond the purchase of the AED.  State and Federal requirements, as well as liability protection must also be considered.

An EFFECTIVE AED program is about managing all the components necessary to ensure compliance. However, it’s challenging to have the time and resources to keep a program up-to-date.

An EFFECTIVE AED program will have policies and procedures that outline the AED program criteria, responsibility of rescuers, maintenance guidelines, operational steps for use, post event procedures, reporting mechanisms and will be your overall guide that outlines the AED program as a whole.

By implementing an AED program in your school or business, you do not add any legal liability, as long as your AED is properly maintained.

An AED Program Management Solution will provide the administrative relief and assurance in the maintenance of an AED Program.  It reduces administrative time and helps ensure your program is rescue ready.

Customized Program Management:

It is understood that proper management of an AED program is paramount, but every customer’s needs are different.  This is why there are multiple solutions at various levels to meet your budget and help ensure accountability and compliance for your program.

An AED solution can include:

  • Physician prescription & oversight
  • Web-based tracking
  • Local registration – compliance with state and federal guidelines
  • Post-event services
  • CPR/AED Certification
  • Documentation
  • Online Resource Library
  • Site assessments
  • In-service calls
  • Product software upgrades
  • Annual on-site maintenance checks

Are Your AEDs Ready and Compliant?

Here are some important questions for anyone managing AEDs:

  • Are you certain every one of your AEDs is ready and will work in an emergency?
  • Do you know the current self-test status of every AED in your program?
  • Are you checking AED status regularly?
  • Do you know when to replace the pads and batteries for each of your AEDs?
  • Are you tracking the responders assigned to your AEDs?
  • Who will you call in order to train your responders in using AEDs and CPR?
  • Do you know when your responders will need re-training to maintain their rescue skills?
  • Can you quickly and accurately review the current status of all your AEDs and trained responders?

Having trouble answering these questions? If so, a formal, online AED management program solution, could make your life a lot easier.

For more information from AED Brands on AEDs, contact Christine Doran, Territory Manager at cdoran@aedbrands.com.