Educators in the Allamakee Community School District implementing new staff development schedule this year

ACSD educators implementing new staff development schedule... Allamakee Community School District (ACSD) educators have embarked on a new staff development schedule to help assist student achievement. Waukon High School Anatomy teacher Sherry Jensen implemented strategies with juniors Mia Strub, Olivia Byrnes and Lainey Erdmann (left to right in photo above), breaking her class into small groups and analyzing blood types. In the photo below, West Elementary Kindergarten teacher Joey Lapel reads with students Anna Abrams and Paisley Rademacher during their reading rotations. Submitted photo.

submitted by the Allamakee Community Education Association

Last March the Allamakee Community School District (ACSD) Board of Education approved a new schedule for professional development. The preceding years, students would go home early on designated days so that school personnel could meet for three hours and work towards the goal of improving student achievement.

For the 2019-2020 school calendar, the schedule was altered to take six Wednesdays and Martin Luther King, Jr. day to have eight hours of professional development each time. This has allowed teachers, counselors and administrators a variety of opportunities that would not have been as easily achieved under the old schedule.

Two weeks ago, February 12 many secondary teachers traveled to and welcomed by neighboring districts to observe other professionals in similar disciplines. Several teachers commented that they had not done anything like this during their career. Individuals observed a variety of items that can be brought back to ACSD classrooms.

Room arrangements, assignments, wall displays, policies and technology policies were scrutinized by many.

Another activity that has been woven through the new professional development schedule is the use of professional learning communities (PLC). Teachers within the district meet with similarly disciplined teachers to cover research, evaluate state guidelines and identify best practices to help students achieve. In a recent instance, elementary teachers worked with Area Education Association (AEA) personnel to “empower students.” At the same time, secondary social studies teachers met with a different AEA professional to review best practices. All had the same goal, to improve student achievement.

Future days are outlined but flexible as needs arrive. Everything is done to provide educators with continued expertise so students have a great educational experience.

Rate this article: 
Average: 5 (1 vote)