Wednesday, February 9, 2011

MSSAA Assistant Principals' Conference Keynote

I am honored to have been asked to give the keynote at our state principals' association's (MSSAA) Assistant Principals Conference in Franklin today. The topic for the keynote was originally "Using Social Media to Improve Communication in your School" but I tweaked it at the last moment and changed it to "Using Social Media to Learn and Build Relationships." It is imperative that in this time where technology is becoming a bigger part of our lives inside and outside of education that we maintain our focus on building relationships.

Returning to the state association brought back so many memories for me from my days on the Assistant Principals Committee and to the incredible support that the MSSAA staff has given me in my 14 years as an administrator.  There is nothing better than interacting with other administrators and sharing the successes and failures that we all face.   To this day, I know that the tremendous staff at the MSSAA Offices in Franklin, including my predecessor in the BHS Principal's Office Linda Hayes,   are just a phone call away. Lastly, there is no doubt in my mind that the mentoring that the late Jerry Silverman provided to me has been instrumental in my career.

Having said all this, I certainly felt a great deal of pressure in trying to utilize my 75-minute session to say something useful to the over 60 administrators in the room who get only a limited amount of time away from their school. I hope that some of what we discussed helped them realize that our conversations about improving our schools no longer needs to be limited to time and place. With so many social media tools available, we can share and collaborate with other educators as often as necessary.

The questions and conversation made the session fly by for me, but I will not consider this a successful session unless I am able to continue to collaborate with my fellow Massachusetts school administrators through some of the various social media sources that we discussed. We need to be leaders in this area to encourage our entire school communities to join us in the collaborative venture of improving our schools so that our students will be ready for the world they will enter when they leave our doors.

The presentation from slideshare is abo. Special thanks to two of my Connected Principals friends George Couros (slides) and Lyn Hilt (feedback) for their help!

I was excited to reconnect with former colleague (Belmont Assistant Principal Dan Richards) who was named Massachusetts Assistant Principal of the Year and is in the running for National AP of the Year.


  1. I am glad it was a successful session! I am sure your colleagues learned much from you sharing your experiences, as we all do!

  2. Congratulations, Mr. Larkin, for being asked to give the keynote address at the MSSAA. We are proud of you. You must have enjoyed sharing about BHS's involvement with Social Media. Thank you for making this possible at BHS. We're all learning a lot here!!