Professional Development Day: A day off for students, a day to learn for teachers and staff
While students around the district are out of school on Friday, September 23rd, our employees are hard at work, becoming learners for the day. Professional development days are a designated time for teachers and staff to receive training that will improve their craft.
According to Gary Thomas, Assistant Superintendent of Elementary Education, depending on the grade they teach, this year, elementary school teachers will be receiving training that focuses on literacy and math skills. Kindergarten through third-grade teachers and Special Education teachers will begin a state-mandated training for teaching early literacy, called LETRS. This training is what they will be focusing on for all of their professional development days for the next two years. Fourth through sixth-grade teachers will focus on number sense, math standards, and word problems in the morning. In the afternoon, they will focus on literacy with the Into Reading Program.
According to Brittany Foster, Director of Secondary Teaching and Learning at CCSD, secondary teachers will attend a conference at Ridgeline High School titled Sharpening Our Focus. With author Dave Stuart Jr. as a keynote speaker and a hearty selection of breakout sessions to choose from, secondary teachers will learn the exact skills they need to be better teachers for their students.
“We have narrowed the scope of our conference to focus on curriculum, effective teaching strategies, and authentic literacy,” Foster explained. “A focus on improving our practice in these three key areas has shown to improve student learning and college and career readiness.” There will also be sessions focused on safety, technology, and professional growth. Teachers will pick the classes they feel would be most beneficial to them and their students.
“Professional development is important because it not only helps us improve our craft and be better teachers, but it also helps us remember what it’s like to be a student,” Thomas explained. Teachers are lifelong learners and professional development days provide them with the resources and support they need to improve their practice and better serve and educate students.