NCSM Insider

Message from NCSM President Katey Arrington

Where did 2023 go? Time flies! I find that the pace of work at the end of the year changes a bit, and the transition to a new year offers me the opportunity to reflect on successes and challenges of the previous year and resolve to make changes and set goals for betterment in the new year.

What are some of the choices and behaviors that you are proud of in the last year? It is important to stop, acknowledge, and celebrate those decisions – big and small. I believe you will find several examples if you provide yourself the space to think about it. 


What are some of the decisions or behaviors that you will be brave and bold enough to admit need to change in the next year to become better? There may be a few things that come up, so please give yourselves the space to examine these ideas and the grace to focus on moving forward in more productive ways.


True reflection isn’t always an easy process. Sydney Poitier, the Bahamian and American actor, director, and diplomat, wrote a series of letters to his great-granddaughter. He said to her, “It will take guts to admit that you have behaved in a way that prevents you from being your better self, and then choose to act differently.” Each of us has made good decisions and chosen behaviors in 2023 that resulted in positive outcomes for ourselves, our schools, and our students. And, I am sure, each of us has made decisions and chosen behaviors that were convenient and good enough in the moment, but that, as we come to the end of the year, we discover have prevented us from becoming our better selves. As Mr. Poitier says, it will take guts to admit that. 

I am proud to share with you all that one of the choices NCSM made this year was to join Networks for Educational Equity: A community of practice for mobilizing knowledge through the field. We are one of eight educational networks who are coming together to deeply reflect on our choices and behaviors that prevent us from becoming the best network we can be, and to improve our support for educators and educational leaders. The group is facilitated by Community Wealth Partners, supported by Results Lab, and generously supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Through this community we are working in partnership with the Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (ALAS), the Benjamin Banneker Association (BBA), Beyond100K, the Black Principals Network (BPN), the California Mathematics Project (CMP), the Math Circle Network, and the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) to create benefit for our individual networks and for the connected community through centering diverse voices and increasing knowledge mobilization through our organizations.


NCSM has some growing to do. We have goals, aligned with those of the community of practice, to better center equity in our work and to ensure that we are supporting the growth and development of a diverse pool of educational leaders. It takes guts to admit we can do better, to thoroughly examine the choices and behaviors that contribute to preventing us from becoming our best selves, and to make different decisions and enact different behaviors moving forward. We will be excited to share more information in coming months about what we are learning and the changes we are making. I am proud of us as an organization for joining and participating in this community of practice, for choosing different actions for the betterment of the organization, and for collaborating with other organizations who are working toward similar aims so that we all contribute to changing the field while we do our own necessary work. 


In the remaining time we have in 2023, I ask you to give yourself and others the kindness of space to reflect on your triumphs and challenges, consider what to leave behind and what is next in your journey as a leader, and choose decisions and behaviors that help you to do and become all that you want next year. 


Have a wonderful winter break and a happy new year! 


— Katey Arrington, NCSM President


MathWorks Math Modeling Challenge

Thank You To Our Sponsors!


Click on any IMAGE below for more info!

NCSM Podcast


Virtual Coaching Labs

NCSM Inspiration!

NCSM Journal of Mathematics Education Leadership 

Essential Actions Series

Book 4

Coaching Corner 

Position Papers

Membership Info

Of Interest to Our Members

The NCSM INSIDER is published monthly.

Please consider forwarding this to a colleague—let's get everyone involved in the conversation!


Subscribe to the Insider 
All NCSM members are automatically subscribed to NCSM's Insider. Anyone can subscribe to this electronic newsletter (members and non-members).


Encourage others to subscribe. Forward this issue to your friends and colleagues who work in or have an interest in mathematics education leadership - or have them click here where they can subscribe themselves. 


Advertising in the Insider

Email the NCSM Sponsor Liaisons, Brea Ratiff and Sherita Wilson-Rodgers, to learn more about advertising in the NCSM monthly Insider.


They can be reached at:

Additional information about our sponsors, other advertising opportunities, and becoming a sponsor can be found HERE.

NCSM...Where Mathematics Leaders

Go To Learn


NCSM is a mathematics education leadership organization that equips and empowers a diverse 

education community to engage in leadership that supports, sustains, and inspires high quality 

mathematics teaching and learning every day for each and every learner.


When you become an NCSM member, you join a network of leaders in mathematics education from around the United States, Canada, and abroad, which works to ensure every student in every classroom has access to effective mathematics teachers, relevant curricula, culturally responsive pedagogy, and current technology.




Visit us 24/7 at
to explore ways to actively engage with NCSM.


Insider Editor: Alison Kothe is the NCSM Marketing Chair. Please feel free to contact Alison at [email protected] with news, feedback, or suggestions.