Rethink Possible Podcast

Real School Leaders. Real Solutions. 

Tailored to current and future K-12 education leaders, the Rethink Possible podcast delivers relatable and relevant content from superintendents and other education thought partners. Each 25-minute conversational episode provides solutions to common challenges and opportunities while accommodating the busy lifestyles of today's school leaders.

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All Episodes

Episode 1: Expanding Career & Technical Education in Schools

Rethink Possible Podcast by CESO Episode 1

In this episode of Rethink Possible, host Bob McDowell connects with Tim Schochenmaier, Superintendent of Central Public Schools, about the importance of Career & Technical Education (CTE) in schools. Tim shares how he and his team reimagined their CTE program to include partnerships with local businesses and hands-on experiences while building awareness with students and businesses through hosting events like Trades Signing Day and forming a Manufacturing Trades Advisory Group.

Episode 2: The Science of Reading Literacy Implementation

young male student in red shirt reading in classroom

In this episode of Rethink Possible, host Bob McDowell talks with Dr. Stacie Stanley about implementing the reading program in Edina Public Schools. They discuss challenges and successes plus the importance of having a strong vision to create an effective reading ecosystem. Dr. Stanley also shares her experience aligning project benchmarks and the strategic plan while redefining metrics. The conversation digs into developing leaders' capacity for change management, building relationships with external partners, and developing data-driven training for teachers and coaches.

Episode 3: Implementing Engagement

group of engaged community members for schools

In this episode of Rethink Possible, host Bob McDowell sits down with Ann-Marie Foucault, Superintendent of St. Michael-Albertville Schools. Ann-Marie shares how she engaged and cultivated relationships with community members to create a supportive coalition for the district. This episode includes her strategies for building trust and communicating effectively with legislators and community stakeholders while stressing the importance of putting students first and finding ways to control the district's narrative.

Episode 4: Effective Instructional Frameworks

teacher instructing female science student

In this episode of Rethink Possible, host Bob McDowell spends time with Dr. Renee Corneille, the Superintendent of Saint Anthony-New Brighton ISD 282. Renee discusses how her district embarked on a three-year process to overhaul their instructional framework. The process was initiated due to a change in state standards, which revealed a gap in the rigor of instruction in the district. Dr. Corneille shares her district's decision to move to a proficiency method of grading in math classes and the change in district departments since then. She also discusses how the decision affected professional development opportunities and offers advice for other superintendents looking to make a similar change.

Episode 5: Rethinking Success Metrics

male and female students holding books

In this episode of Rethink Possible, host Bob McDowell speaks with Dr. Rhoda Mhiripiri-Reed, superintendent of Hopkins Public Schools. Rhoda shares her experience reimagining student success metrics in public schools. She explains that the current metrics, which mostly include standardized test scores, have flaws and do not accurately reflect the success of all students. Her district has taken steps to redefine metrics by involving stakeholders - students, parents, and colleges - to identify important traits for graduates and aligning with the concept of competency-based education. She, along with the district leadership team, focused on the goal of making school more relevant, engaging, and meaningful for students. They are currently identifying tools for assessing holistic competencies, such as social-emotional learning, and developing skills-based learning progressions aligned with their graduate traits.

Meet Bob McDowell, the host of Rethink Possible

Meet the Host

Dr. Bob McDowell brings the unique perspective he gained through his time as assistant principal, principal, assistant superintendent and superintendent to his role as host of the Rethink Possible podcast. In addition to his K-12 experience, he's taught graduate-level education courses for St. Mary's University and Bethel University as well as advised doctoral students and superintendent licensee candidates. Through this podcast, he helps connect leaders across the country with tried and true solutions for K-12 education.

Join the Conversation

Rethink Possible is looking for podcast guests and topic ideas! We would love to hear how you or someone you know has tackled a challenge in K-12 education with creative solutions. Share your thoughts in this form, and we will be in touch soon!

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