Listening to Upset Stakeholders: What to do when your community brings emotion to the table

Room: D139-140

Audience: Educators

Call to Action: 

  1. A renewed commitment to their stakeholders.
  2. The ability to look beyond any negative emotions they may have to understand the core causes of the reactions.
  3. Glean from those reactions a pathway to respectfully listen and adapt.

Abstract: In an ideal world, school district leaders, would anticipate change, make a plan and stake holders would agree on the steps needed. This rarely happens. Normally when a district needs to add buildings, or make other significant facility challenges, the community will have an emotional reaction. This can be difficult to deal with. Listening well through this process requires intentionality, patience, and skill. This session will use real examples, and research to prompt new thinking and insight.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Learn how to identify what may be happening emotionally with stakeholders in the planning or design process.
  2. Learn how to listen to these patrons objectively.
  3. Learn how to identify core issues that are trigging any negative emotional responses.
  4. Consider how to constructively incorporate this patron input into any education facility design.
Dr. David Reinhart
Dr. David Reinhart
Chief Operating Officer, West Ada School District

As the Chief Operating Officer of West Ada School District in suburban Boise, Idaho, David oversees 58 schools and serve 40,000 students. His academic journey includes a Doctorate from Gonzaga University, where he specialized in enhancing education facility master planning. Prior to this, David earned a Bachelor’s in Landscape Architecture from Ohio State University and a Master’s in Theology from Saint Meinrad School of Theology. Additionally, he holds an Education Specialist/Superintendent’s License from Boise State University.

Core Competency

Educational Facility Pre-Design Planning
Manages a master planning process that combines educational planning, facilities assessment and utilization, demographic research, capital planning and educational specifications with a community-based vision to establish a plan for learning environments. This includes the ability to translate existing or aspirational instructional models to specific programming and spatial relationships.

LearningSCAPES 2024 Conference in Portland, Oregon


Oregon Convention Center
777 NE Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd, Portland, OR 97232


October 16-19, 2024


+1 480.391.0840