Video Blog: John Lennon Shares Why Attending Convo Is So Important

Are you attending the 50th Biennial KDP Convocation in Orlando, Florida? In the first of a series of video blogs, KDP member John Lennon will talk about what he realized when he attended Convo in 2013, and why he thinks attending KDP Convo is so important for your chapter and your career in education.

John P. Lennon was the Associate Counselor for the Epsilon Eta Chapter at Central Michigan University this past Spring. As an undergraduate he was a chapter officer and attended the 2013 KDP Convocation in Dallas, Texas. You can reach John at

Need a Reason to Come To Convo? Joel Laguna.

Have you registered for KDP Convo? If not, you might want to reserve your spot right. This. Second. Why? Because we have an amazing lineup of keynote speakers. A lineup that just got even better.

We’ve received confirmation that Joel Laguna, who was featured in last year’s documentary TEACH, will be at Convo, sharing his story with us during the Saturday luncheon.

Joel is in his sixth year of teaching and has taught at Compton High School in Compton, CA, James A. Garfield High School in East Los Angeles, and just opened a brand-new film and media magnet school in LAUSD teaching 6th grade English/History in the Silverlake neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Check out this video to learn a little bit more about him:

His incredible passion for teaching is infectious, and he is so excited to share his experiences and wisdom with KDP’s preservice and practicing educators.

So, what are you waiting for? Register today and ensure you have the opportunity to meet Joel and hear his inspiring story in Orlando!

#TBT Literacy Alive!

Katie Heath
Katie Heath is the Northeast Regional Chapter Coordinator and Literacy Alive! Coordinator for Chapter Services.

If you’re anything like me, you love sorting through old documents and unveiling historical information. Recently, I dug out the records for the first year of Literacy Alive! and was amazed by what I discovered!

It is remarkable to see both how little and how much has changed with the Literacy Alive! service initiative over the last 22+ years. Perhaps the most exciting finding was that several of the chapters that have participated in Literacy Alive! in recent years are the very same chapters that took an active role in the program’s initial stages.

I was impressed by the statistics from Literacy Alive’s! first year as KDP’s signature service initiative. While modest growth is often expected in the first few years of any new program, to have impacted so many people from the very beginning shows the true hearts of KDP members everywhere. Roughly 22 years later, I am overwhelmed with pride as I reflect on the progress Literacy Alive! has made and the impact this program continues to have on communities across the country.

For this week’s #TBT take a look at the statistics from the first year of Literacy Alive! (1993) compared with those of last year’s programming.

4.2.2015 #TBT

We hope you plan to participate in Literacy Alive! this year as KDP’s signature service program continues to grow and expand. If your chapter has already held an event, don’t forget to submit the Literacy Alive! Achievement Form by May 1. If you have not yet participated, it’s certainly not too late. Check out our website for more information about hosting a Literacy Alive! project, or contact me with questions!

Serving Together,


You’re Award Worthy, So Apply!

Chris Beaman is a member of the KDP headquarters staff on the chapter services team as well as an active member of Kappa Delta Pi. He oversees the awards program.

We consider it a privilege to recognize the important work that our volunteers and chapters do to impact their communities; recognizing excellence always has been a part of Kappa Delta Pi’s mission. The Awards for Education Excellence honor those individuals and chapters for their significant contributions to the Society and the education world. We’re talking about members and chapter leaders like you!

For the first time ever, to help you with completing the application(s), we are providing the rubrics that will be used to score your submission. We encourage you to use this resource to make your application as strong as possible.

The annual awards below are for the 2014-2015 academic year, and the deadline for submissions is Friday, May 15 at 5:00 p.m. Winners will be recognized at Convocation 2015 in Orlando, FL from October 22-24, 2015.

prog-awardChapter Program Award

Chapters can submit five programs for consideration—one in each of the following areas: Communication, Community Service, Fundraising, Membership, & Professional Development.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Program Award by clicking here. Go ahead and submit your application as well!

phoenix awardPhoenix Award for Chapter Improvement

Each year, we work with a number of chapters that find they have room for improvement. We are astounded at the efforts put in by chapter leaders to strengthen chapter-member engagement, establish programs meeting member needs, and identifying leadership opportunities for chapter members.

Our intent with this award is to recognize those efforts in strengthening the chapter and thank you for your service!

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Phoenix Award by clicking here, and find the submission form by clicking here.

dist officerDistinguished Chapter Officer Award

Having a strong, engaged chapter directly correlates with having strong chapter leadership. Among their various other responsibilities, chapter officers plan events, organize service projects, recruit new members, and maintain the sustainability of the chapter. The Distinguished Chapter Officer Award honors current or immediate-past officers who set positive examples for their chapters by representing the ideals of Kappa Delta Pi.

All of our 600+ chapters are eligible to submit one officer for consideration. Whose name will your chapter submit?!

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Distinguished Chapter Officer Award by clicking here, and submit the officer’s name before May 15 at 5p.m. by clicking here.

regional counselorRegional Chapter Counselor Award

Here at Headquarters, we always say (and believe) that the sustainability of our chapters depends on the commitment and leadership of the dedicated Chapter Counselors and the mentoring they provide to the students and members.

How has your Chapter Counselor impacted you individually and the chapter collectively? Submit his/her name for consideration of this prestigious award!

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Regional Chapter Counselor Award by clicking here, and be sure to submit his/her name for consideration soon by clicking here.

The above awards submitted are reviewed by a panel of judges, and award-winning applications will be announced on Wednesday, June 3, 2015.

The biennial awards below are for the 2013-2015 biennium, and the deadline for submissions is Monday, June 1, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. Winners will be recognized at Convocation 2015 in Orlando, FL from October 22-24, 2015.

aceAchieving Chapter Excellence (ACE) Award

Established in 1995, the Achieving Chapter Excellence (ACE) Awards program recognizes KDP chapters that exhibit outstanding programming, membership, and leadership in support of the Society’s mission and strategic goals. Since its inception, chapters across the country have aspired to offer creative, purposeful programming and a full slate of chapter activities with the hope of earning this coveted award.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the ACE Award by clicking here. We encourage you to print a copy of the submission form and fill it in as you go before applying online. View the submission form now!

rising starRising Star Award for New Chapters

KDP welcomes several new chapters each year. The Rising Star Award for New Chapters recognizes these new groups that demonstrate outstanding management and programming in their first biennium following installation.

Chapters installed between June 1, 2012 and June 30, 2014 that have not already won this award are encouraged to apply.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Rising Star Award by clicking here. Apply now using the submission form!

O.L. Davis, Jr. Counselor of Distinction Award

This award honors Chapter Counselors with at least five years of KDP service and activity for their service, scholarship, professional development, outstanding leadership of the chapter, and mentorship of the chapter’s student leaders.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the O.L. Davis, Jr. Counselor of Distinction Award by clicking here. Apply now using the submission form!

lucinda roseLucinda Rose Counselor Award

The Lucinda Rose Counselor Award, funded by Drs. Vincent and Linda McGrath, honors an exemplary Counselor and chapter leader within Kappa Delta Pi.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Lucinda Rose Award by clicking here. This is not an open nomination award.

foundersFounders Awards

As a tribute to KDP’s founding members and their vision for the Society and its role in the field of education, these Founders Awards honor current educators at the local, national, or global level living these visions today.

For more information visit the Awards and Honors page.

The above awards submitted are reviewed by a panel of judges, and award-winning applications will be announced on Monday, June 29, 2015.

I am personally looking forward to reading through the award applications as they come in. Part of my job is to compile the applications in order to send them to our reviewing panel, and it is a pleasure to read about the chapter successes and about the individuals who have made a positive impact on the chapter.

For more information about the Awards for Education Excellence and to view the recipients of our 2013-2014 annual awards, please check out the Recognition pages of our website.

Got a Minute? Week of February 9, 2015

Got a minute for KDP? See what’s going on at headquarters in a one-minute(ish) video.

This week:

  • Check out The Educational Forum! KDP’s 79-year-old premiere academic journal has a new look. Members get 75% off subscription prices. Learn more on The Forum page of the KDP website.
  • Proposals are now being accepted for KDP Convo, Oct. 22-24 in Orlando. There are many formats this year, so check them out! Deadline is Feb. 16.

Katie’s Northeast Chapter Visits

Katie Heath is Northeast Regional Chapter Coordinator at Kappa Delta Pi.

Bell 1One of my favorite things about working at Kappa Delta Pi is the opportunity to travel and visit chapters all across the Northeast! Last week I had the privilege of meeting with a few chapters in western Pennsylvania and New York.

One of those chapters was Lambda Eta Chapter at Clarion University of Pennsylvania. While meeting with Dr. Apple, Counselor, and Betty, President, they showed me some old chapter scrapbooks, including a newspaper article from the 1960s describing an old school bell that the chapter presented to KDP Headquarters in honor of our founder, William Chandler Bagley. We continue to house that same bell in our Laureate Library.

Bell 2I also was fortunate to meet with a few Pennsylvania chapters together as a cluster meeting to network and share resources and ideas. It was wonderful to reconnect with students and counselors that I first met at Convo 2013 in Dallas, as well as meet some new KDP leaders. As much as I enjoy sharing information about Kappa Delta Pi and supporting our chapter leaders, I also love hearing about the unique programs and events hosted by our individual chapters. Thank you to the chapter leaders from Robert Morris University, Grove City College, and Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania for your participation in this small regional meeting. Your dedication and creativity are so inspiring and appreciated.

I sincerely value the discussions with chapter leaders during each visit and continue to learn more about each chapter and Kappa Delta Pi as a Society every time I travel. Your ideas, success stories, and challenges allow me to support you as a leader of Kappa Delta Pi and as an educator.

KDP Chapter Visit, Katie 2014P.S. Thank you to Clarion University of Pennsylvania, St. Bonaventure University, The State University of New York – Fredonia, Gannon University, and Mercyhurst University for your gracious hospitality!

If I can do it, so can you: how I became KDP’s National Student Teacher of the Year

Jenna Haskins is a Long Island resident and certified elementary school teacher. She graduated from Dowling College in 2013 and was the 2013 recipient of the KDP/ATE National Student Teacher of the Year Award.

Jenna headshotI never thought I would actually be named the KDP/ATE Student Teacher of the Year, but when I found out about this opportunity, nothing could stop me from trying. No award of this importance is the work of just one person. There are many people who contributed: my professors, my cooperating teachers, my students, and my family.

I came across this award when I was in my last semester at Dowling College, completing my student teaching experience in a third-grade classroom. The combination of creating a lesson for this opportunity and wanting to leave my students with a lasting impression became my focus.

It did take a lot of work, and certainly a lot of creativity to put this video together in order to be ready to submit. I created a lesson on “Discrimination and The Power of Acceptance,” based on Jane Elliott’s 1968 “Brown Eyed, Blue Eyed Experiment.” I also used President Barack Obama’s, “Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to my Daughters.”

Jenna at Convo 2I am grateful that this lesson won me this prestigious award, but the reaction of my students to this lesson was the true win for me.  Making my students feel discrimination first hand was the most powerful experience I have ever undergone. Being able to create an experience for my students, to be carried with them beyond the classroom, reminds me each day why I entered the field of education.

A few pieces of advice for new teachers from a new teacher herself:

  • Never lose sight of the end result. There will be moments, days, or even weeks that seem like an endless battle when you are in the classroom. DON’T GIVE UP! Your students need you!
  • Never stop inspiring hope in your students. For some, this is there safe haven and home away from home. Make sure they’re comfortable and encourage them to be their best every day.
  • Ignite your students’ imagination in every lesson you teach. Make it fun for them, so they care and want to learn more. Making your students care is the KEY to success.
  • Never miss a chance to go far beyond teaching the curriculum. Your students should be connecting every lesson you teach to the real world. Make them understand WHY they are learning it.
  • Lastly, always remember, you chose teaching for a reason!

I entered the teaching profession because I want to impact the world, and the art of teaching allows you to do that. Education, in my opinion, is one of the most powerful tools in society. Should there ever be a day you question what you do, just take a second and look in the eyes of your students and you will know you are right where you are supposed to be, making a difference. You have the ability to shape our future. Thank you for being a part of a profession that makes a world of difference!

Jenna at ConvoAnd remember, you’ll miss one hundred percent of the shots you don’t take. So, my advice is to take the shot and apply for KDP/ATE National Student Teacher of the Year for 2014. This could be your year!

To view my lesson on “Discrimination and The Power of Acceptance,” visit my online portfolio