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School Culture By Design

During 35+ years of wandering the continent, visiting schools and listening to leaders share their joys and frustrations, Phil Boyte has learned a lot about building great school culture. In this podcast, he and his team share stories from impactful leaders who are putting their PEOPLE FIRST and give simple techniques to design a culture where everyone can belong. We invite you along on this listening journey. You will hear simple and transformative stories about building community, vulnerability, and trust on your campus. No matter what role you play, we believe everyone has a hand in creating a place no one will want to leave.
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School Culture By Design
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May 2, 2024

Phil and Shyana want to leave you feeling encouraged as you head into the final weeks of the school year. Together they share simple ideas that will leave your team feeling connected, reminded why they matter, and with anticipation as they look to return next year. They remind us all that creating a PEOPLE FIRST culture is truly in the tiny moments. 

Mar 13, 2024

Mike Brasier is an innovation Principal in his fourth year leading Thompson Junior High School and has a deep passion for building schools that provide equity, empowering kids and teachers to do what they love, and creating opportunities to do so.  Mike shares how leveraging the ‘Four P’s’ - Passion, Peers, Play and Projects, has empowered his people and created unity and excitement across his campus.  Listen in to learn how Mike puts these principles into action to create a school where teachers love what they do and kids are engaged and having fun!

 

Jan 31, 2024

Roni Habib is a speaker, author, and expert in helping leaders, educators, and parents become happier and more resilient. During this podcast, Phil and Roni talk about the value of creating vulnerability and connection with students. Roni shares how he uses the concept of RAAMP to help build emotional intelligence for everyone. Check out his new book: Happy & Resilient: The Complete Guide to Joyful Teaching, Learning, and Living

Jan 4, 2024

Step into a conversation with Casey Giovannoni, a dedicated advocate for student well-being, who took on the role of principal at Central Valley High School amidst post-Covid challenges. In this podcast, Casey offers a glimpse into the journey he and his team undertook to harmonize excellent student academics with a thriving staff culture. He shares ideas, lessons learned along the way, and the impactful outcomes seen through their efforts to enhance staff culture.

Nov 21, 2023

Michele Anderson is the principal at Sunnyside HS in Fresno, California and believes great change starts by leading with compassion. She shares lessons in partnering with the parents and the power of inviting students into PD with your staff.

Simple reminders to start with a PEOPLE FIRST approach with both staff and students.

Oct 6, 2023

Phil and Laurie Boyte take listeners on a journey through their recent trip to Italy, discussing mindset takeaways they gained from their travels.

  • Embrace the unknown and unpredictable aspects of life for more fulfilling experiences.
  • Infuse passion and love into work to create meaningful connections.
  • By shifting your mindset, you can experience life in new ways and build deeper relationships with others.
How can you implement these mindset shifts into your school culture? 
Sep 13, 2023

Dr. Tron Young is the building principal at Joseph Arthur Middle School in O’Fallon, IL and was named the 2020 Illinois Middle School Principal of the year. During this podcast, Dr. Young shares his leadership philosophy of being a "thermostat, not a thermometer," which means setting the culture and tone instead of just reflecting it. In this dynamic interview, Phil and Tron talk about bus tours, the 4 goals Dr. Tron sets with his students each year, and his FRIDAY FIVE that has truly helped cultivate a school of people first. 

 

Aug 15, 2023

Craig Tucker from ImplementED joins the podcast to talk about how having clarity around your mission, vision, and core values can have a tremendous impact on culture.  He shares why data is so valuable and gives a sample activity you can do to get perspective from different voices from your school/organizational community.

Aug 2, 2023

Leslie Loewen has served California’s Central Valley as a teacher, coach, club sponsor, and administrator for more than 24 years. She is focused on active learning, positive relationship-building, and planting the seeds of knowledge and leadership through student engagement. During this podcast, she and Phil talk about how slowing down and truly listening to people can help cultivate a healthier culture. She also talks about the power of building relationships with the “forgotten” staff members and how to cultivate a “check-me” culture.

Jul 16, 2023

As Brene Brown said, “We are hardwired to connect with others, it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and without it there is suffering.” Join Phil Boyte and Shyana Frost as they talk about the power of starting with connections in order to build a PEOPLE FIRST culture. They have heard all the reasons it can feel hard to focus on this work between not enough time, resistant participants, or even lack of priority… but they believe starting with the human work is vital to team success. Through stories, recent data, and simple examples of activities you can use, they will remind leaders why this work is so valuable. Don’t miss the Scroll your Roll Scavenger Hunt idea they share.

May 2, 2023

Hiring the right people is critical for school culture. Think about it, the team you hire is the team you will come together with everyday, the team you’ll be in the trenches with, and the team that becomes like a second family. Join Shyana Frost and Raleigh Bame, Principal, Laurel Park Elementary, as they discuss the importance of hiring and retaining great people to fill your staff. Listen in as they provide strategies and ideas that can be applied to your hiring process to put people first and ensure a good fit both for the school and for the person.

Apr 11, 2023

The tiny moments that you conclude your year with can be a marker for what people remember about the school year. Join Phil Boyte and Shyana Frost, COO at Learning for Living, as they discuss how to infuse “Moments of Magic” into the last weeks of the school year to create a fun and engaging environment. Gain ideas on tiny moments you can use as is, or twist - think Rubik’s cube - to change up your routine and create joy amongst your staff, colleagues and students.

Feb 23, 2023

Jennifer Prince joins Phil to talk about the power of being a positive leader. She is the Executive Director of Teaching, Learning, and Innovation for the Glendora Unified School District and shares pieces of the research she did for her dissertation focused on the relationships between positive leaders, teacher satisfaction, and overall staff morale.  Listen in as she and Phil give practical ways to create more positivity in whatever role you play.

Feb 10, 2023

David Hamel, Owner and Operator of Chick-fil-A in Durham, North Carolina joins Phil to talk about how Chick-fil-A approaches building a people focused culture. He has seen the strongest leaders are willing to be intentional and inconvenienced, shares the companies CORE 4, and the concept of calling people UP versus OUT. Looking for amazing inspiration from an excellent company? This is a great podcast for every leader looking to grow their people.

Jan 25, 2023

Dwight Carter has been an educational leader in a variety of capacities over the past 25 + years and has a passion for building great culture. During this podcast, he shares why re-setting expectations coming out of the pandemic is so vital, how to practice those expectations, and then the power of trusting your staff and students to live them out. Dwight believes in the power of a smile and hello, and wraps up the podcast sharing about his book BE GREAT.

Dec 16, 2022

Paul Lundberg believes every good team needs a healthy PIT STOP along the way and during his conversation with Phil, he talks about leveraging the acronym RISE (Reconnect, Inspire, Serve, and Evaluate) to ensure teams are connected and clear on where they are going next. See the CULTURE BLOG for a PIT STOP template to guide your teams reflection time.  

Dec 13, 2022

Phil Boyte and guest Dr. Deborah Beagle, Director of Student Activities, share activities that build connections and school culture! From playdough, coins, balloons, to paper airplanes, hear how Debbie uses common items with activities to teach lessons of being intentional, kind, seizing the moment, and more! Check out our Culture Blog for resources to download, including Debbie’s paper airplane example to inspire positivity. 

Nov 22, 2022

Guest Dr. Robert McBride, Superintendent of Lockport Township High School District 205, shares three ways leaders can build trust. Hear his examples of scheduling time to be present and available, being fully transparent, and teaching others to cultivate a culture of trust. Plus, try the “Fun Facts” activity by asking someone, “What is one fun fact about you?” to build a connection!  

Oct 25, 2022

Phil Boyte and guest Stephanie Haynes, veteran educator, speaker, coach, and author, discuss causes of educator burnout and provide ways to cope with it. Don’t miss their ideas on building connections, including the classroom activity, “Uplift Jar.”

Oct 7, 2022

Phil Boyte and Dr. John Eick, Executive Director at Westlake Charter School, share ideas on how to celebrate staff, create opportunities to share stories, and build a school culture prepared for disruptive change. Don’t miss Dr. Eick’s relationship building activity everyone can do with a photo on their cell phone. 

Sep 13, 2022

Shyana Frost, our resident culture guru and COO, puts on her Kindergarten Mom hat to reflect on how tiny moments have helped create trust in her school community. Listen in to hear examples (some accomplished in just one minute!) that made a huge impact and how everyone on campus can create a “people first” culture. www.LearningForLiving.com

Aug 24, 2022

Guest Robin Nott, Fine Arts Artist and Educator from Richland, Michigan, discusses how storytelling enables students to share their true story and connect with each other in a meaningful way. Download his “Story Sparks” activity to build connections at your next staff meeting or in the classroom. As Robin says, “everybody is a storyteller.” LearningForLiving.com

Aug 9, 2022

Phil Boyte and guest Paul Lundberg share ideas on leadership and prioritizing “people first.” Paul breaks down 3 ways for managers to evolve into leaders. Leaders invest in their people, create fellow leaders, and inspire by listening. He further states how listening and being engaged in a conversation without tapping out builds strong relationships and breaks down conflict. 

Jul 26, 2022

In this episode, Phil Boyte and Laurie Beyer, Principal at Maidu Elementary School in Roseville, California, share ideas on how to connect with kids, build trust with staff, and build community on campus. Laurie reminds us of the importance of focusing on what is going well and being present. Listen in to hear more about her superpower of knowing every student’s name. 

Jul 6, 2022

In Episode 95, Phil Boyte and guest Aaron Ragon, Lead Counselor for Douglas County School District in Colorado, share ways to support staff and student well-being. Listen in to hear how Aaron builds community and trust with his team of counselors. He also reminds us to find moments of humor in our day. 

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