Neil Howe on Millennials in K-12 Schools

Last Updated: Jun. 2, 2009

Looking for an engaging, informative keynote speaker?
Want to know how school leaders can best serve today’s Millennial Generation of students?

Neil Howe explains it all.

Neil Howe…

  • Coined the term “Millennial Generation”
  • Was featured on CBS’s 60 Minutes and PBS’s Generation Next 2.0 by Judy Woodruff for his advice on Millennials
  • Is a best-selling author of eight books on generations, including Millennials and K–12 Schools, co-published with AASA
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Neil Howe’s presentations cover the hottest emerging issues in education, from helicopter moms to the new focus on teamwork and protection, from the new research on “small learning communities” and more rigorous “standards” to the best way to manage student “engagement” and continuous academic feedback.

Get ready for a fascinating journey through the life stories of all of today’s generations and for an inspiring message about how to unleash the potential of Millennial students.

Bring America’s leading generational expert to your district

National speaker and best-selling author with William Strauss of such books as Generations (1991), 13th Gen (1993), The Fourth Turning (1997), and Millennials Rising (2000), Neil Howe is America’s foremost expert on generations.

Howe’s how-to books on Millennials have been sought after by every institution that handles youth. His Recruiting Millennials (2000) was put into the hands of every U.S. Army recruiting sergeant and has served as a guidebook for every branch of the U.S. military. His Millennials Go to College (2003, 2007) was listed in The Chronicle of Higher Education as “favorite reading” among university executives, and has earned him speaking invitations to dozens of campuses and to every major national collegiate association. His Millennials and the Pop Culture (2006) is helping the entertainment industry navigate the shoals of its fast-changing market. Later this year, he will release Millennials in the Workplace.

Articles by Howe, and reviews of his books, have appeared in Harvard Business Review, Atlantic, Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, American Demographics, and other national publications.

Howe and co-author Strauss originally coined the term “Millennial Generation” and have redefined how America thinks about its post-Gen-X youth. Howe’s work on Millennials has been featured on CBS’s 60 Minutes. His insights into Millennials in the workplace have already been tapped by some of the top HR outfits in the nation, including global consulting firms like Mercer and Accenture, the United Nations, U.S. Army, and Marine Corps, professional groups like the American Staffing Association, investment firms like Goldman Sachs, and large hi-tech manufacturers like Raytheon, ITT, and Northrop Grumman.

More about Millennials and K–12 Schools

photo School leaders have been noticing a host of changes in this new crop of students, and wondering how they should respond. Now, thanks to this new book co-published by AASA, they can find out.

In Millennials and K–12 Schools, Neil Howe and William Strauss explain what’s behind this new Millennial wave—everything from hyper-involved parents to the new popularity of small learning communities, from the rising need for structure and feedback to new problems over cheating, peer pressure, and school security. The authors also address the recent shift to Generation X parents, with their new focus on accountability, transparency, and choice, and explain the generational changes shaking up today’s teacher corps. For each issue, the authors offer a hands-on list of “what to dos.”

How well do you know the Millennials?

Do you know that…

  • In a 2006 LifeCourse-Datatel survey, parents agree strongly that they spend more time with their Millennial children than their own parents spent with them at the same age.
  • Nine in ten youth now describe themselves as “happy,” “confident,” and “positive,” and teen suicide rates are trending downward for the first time since World War II.
  • In the 2007 UCLA American Freshman Survey, 70 percent of Millennial teens said it is essential or very important to help others who are in difficulty—the highest response in twenty-seven years.
  • The share of youth reporting “very different” values from their parents has fallen by roughly half since the 1970s, and the share who say their values are “very or mostly similar” has hit an all-time high of 76 percent.
  • An unprecedented and still-rising share of high school students are aspiring to go to four-year colleges (7 in 10), and the number of high school students who take and pass Advanced Placement exams has more than doubled in the past ten years.

How well is your school or district serving this generation?

Find out why we recommend that educators…

  • Get “helicopter parents” on your side by enlisting them as allies in a joint effort to protect and educate their “special” son or daughter (take a cue from colleges with their parent orientations and college-parent partnership contracts).
  • Offer tight cycles of feedback and redirection in the classroom, including continuous monitoring of every student’s progress.
  • Make security measures conspicuously present in every school (clearly marked perimeters, security personnel with uniforms, rules prohibiting dress or behavior that set a dangerous tone). Define sheltering broadly to include the seamless deliver of mental health, social, disability, and wellness services.
  • Harness students’ team skills in the classroom through group projects, small learning communities, and interactive networking technologies.
  • Emphasize alignment everywhere—for schools, coursework, and teachers—and closely articulate secondary with post-secondary education.

How well is your school or district handling today’s hyper-involved parents?

Find out why we recommend that educators…

  • Start relationships with parents early and spell out the reciprocal obligations of parents and schools.
  • Stress a chain of personal accountability for anything that goes wrong, particularly in “zero tolerance” areas like school safety.
  • Offer measurable standards (and data measuring the achievement of those standards) for schools, teachers, and students; provide transparency in all important deliberations about strategy.
  • Collect data on the career outcomes and earnings capabilities of graduates five and ten years down the road.
  • Enable parent choice; present your school as the best option in a competitive market.

Book A Keynote

For more information, please visit our Consulting page. To schedule a keynote speech, call (866) 537-4999 x3 or e-mail

Book A Keynote

For more information, please visit our Consulting page. To schedule a keynote speech, call (866) 537-4999 x3 or e-mail

Sample Keynote Footage

Click on the titles below to view video clips of Neil Howe presenting on America’s recent generations.