IBSC Ideas Lab

Professional Conversations for Senior Leaders of Boys’ Schools

North America

Wednesday, September 23, 9:00 - 10:00 AM PDT
Wednesday, October 21, 9:00 - 10:00 AM PDT
Wednesday, November 18, 9:00 - 10:00 AM PST

IBSC Ideas Lab invites senior leaders of member schools in North America to connect virtually using the free online tool Zoom. Limited to 12 participants plus facilitators, each IBSC Ideas Lab includes three one-hour sessions for participants to discuss topics focused on boys and boys’ schools.

Designed as an interactive exchange among colleagues, IBSC Ideas Lab engages dedicated educators who learn and grow together. Each session starts with a 10-minute introduction from a global guest to jumpstart a facilitated conversation on the topic. Together we surface fresh ideas and build mutual support structures and enduring professional friendships.

Available exclusively to IBSC member schools, first-time participants who can commit to joining every session within a cohort get preference in registration to support the success of each small group.

Who Should Attend?

Senior leaders from member schools, including deputy heads, directors, division heads, executive committee members, and others who aspire to headship of a boys’ school in North America

Course Format

IBSC Ideas Lab attendees participate in three scheduled one-hour calls using Zoom. Lorri Hamilton Durbin, head of school, Town School for Boys (United States), facilitates each session with thought-provoking input from guest presenters who contextualize each topic. This IBSC Ideas Lab focuses on these topics:

Conversation 1
Wednesday, September 23, 9:00 - 10:00 AM PDT
Topics Facing Heads of Boys’ Schools
Guest Presenter: Byron Hulsey, Headmaster, Woodberry Forest School (United States)

What issues at your school keep you up at night and occupy your thoughts during the day? Engage with fellow heads of school to examine and discuss such issues as following school mission and values, considering their relevancy in today’s climate, creating a welcoming environment for boys, cultivating connection among boys, staff, and families, welcoming and acclimating new families and staff, building equity and inclusion, exploring concepts of masculinity, finding best practices to educate boys, and strengthening leadership and governance. Dive into how these vital issues impact boys and our schools.

Conversation 2
Wednesday, October 21, 9:00 - 10:00 AM PDT
The Head and the Heart
Guest Presenter: Lester Lalla, Headmaster, St. John’s Preparatory School (South Africa)

How do you prioritize your own well-being and present an effective role model for your staff to do the same? Join leaders to discuss caring for yourself, managing stress, creating healthy cultures, practicing mindfulness, enhancing faculty wellness, and sustaining leadership energy.

Conversation 3
Wednesday, November 18, 9:00 - 10:00 AM PST
Write a New Narrative for Boys’ Schools
Guest Presenter: Tom Batty, Principal, Scotch College (Australia)

What is the narrative for your school? Explore ways to broaden definitions of masculinity, foster belonging in boys’ schools, create safe spaces for boys in our schools, view success in a modern context, marry tradition with the demands of modern society, and establish boys’ schools as places of purpose.

Read more about the guest presenters.


Lorri Hamilton Durbin

Lorri Hamilton Durbin

Prior to joining Town School for Boys in July 2017, Lorri Hamilton Durbin served as middle school director at The Dalton School in New York City, where she oversaw curriculum and program for 500 students in grades four through eight. She has worked in academic schools with distinct missions, where the emphasis has been on teams working together to create an outstanding educational program for the growth of every student.

Durbin served as the associate director at The Klingenstein Center for Independent School Leadership at Teachers College, Columbia University; head of the middle school at The Nueva School in Hillsborough, CA; director of admissions and financial aid at San Francisco University High School; and alumni coordinator, admissions counsellor, and teacher at her alma mater, Midland School, in Los Olivos, CA. She has served twice as a member of the board of directors of the Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT) Board.

Along with her distinguished career in education, Durbin has worked at Cambridge Associates, LLC and Goldman, Sachs & Co. She has a B.A. in government from Pomona College, where she was the varsity soccer captain and member of the All-League Teams and played women’s lacrosse. Durbin holds a master’s in educational administration from Stanford University and a master’s of business administration from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. She currently serves on the board of trustees of IBSC and the Common Sense Media Regional Council.


IBSC member rate: $150

Contact Bruce Collins at collins@theibsc.org with any questions.

Refund Policy

IBSC will refund 90% of registration fees if a written request is received two weeks prior to the class. No refunds will be made for cancellations received after this time. Schools seeking to register an alternate to replace a participant unable to attend should contact IBSC@theibsc.org.

Please note: Participants will receive detailed call information and meeting invitations after registration closes.