District provides faculty targeted professional development at Superintendent’s Conference Day


District provides faculty targeted professional development at Superintendent’s Conference Day

February 9, 2016


WVCSD Superintendent's Conference Day - Feb. 2016

Providing its faculty with professional development is a priority for the Warwick Valley Central School District, which holds four Superintendent’s Conference Day sessions each school year.

At Superintendent’s Conference Day on Thurs., Feb. 11, teachers participated in professional development sessions targeted to their specialty areas.

Preliminary activities involved “Design Teams,” with faculty members collaborating to come up with a framework and ideas for #TheirFuture, a multi-faceted effort that will take place over 18+ months to help the district better prepare all students for their future. This initiative will allow the district to imagine, design and implement innovative programs and align resources in support of those programs.

Design Teams focused on exploring the following:

Summer Enrichment – This design team worked to innovate a summer enrichment program for Middle School children in grades 7-8 who need an intervention as they transition into 8th grade and the High School, respectively. The curriculum will be thematically based and differ from what students study during the regular school year.

Online Gradebook – This design team worked toward creatively framing out the parameters for an online gradebook (grades 5-12).

Instructional Rounds Conducted by Teachers – What if teachers visited classrooms with their colleagues, and looked at students and what they were learning? Building upon the administrative learning walks which have taken place in the district over the last two years, this design team will “hand the keys over” to teachers and ask…what should teacher walks look like? What do teachers value in the concept of learning walks? These walks will be designed for teachers by teachers.

High School Common Assessments (grades 9-12) – To simplify and clarify grade-by-grade learning goals, including the “big ideas,” high school teachers worked on a plan toward designing common, high-quality student tasks in all subjects.

Elementary Report Cards – With a focus on literacy, this design team began the process of revising the elementary report card.

Student Leadership – Students involved in the student leadership academy devised ways to get feedback from parents, community members and other groups to help with the direction of the school district.

Examples of targeted professional development for teachers: 

●    Music & Art – NYS leaders discussed new Regents “4+1 Pathway to Graduation” which involves art & music

●    Innovator’s Workshop – Planning for Innovators Workshop, a new program for HS juniors and seniors interested in entrepreneurship, or who have an innovative idea or solution to explore. Innovators Workshop combines three high school course disciplines into one of three groups of courses, depending on the student’s interest.

●    Training workshop with educational consultant on the Danielson Framework for administrators and teacher-leaders at all grade levels

●    Environmental – The “Green Team” worked on sustainability curriculum at each grade level

●    Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation (CELF) – Planning summer curriculum work; also related to the EPA Grant received by the district

●    Elementary teachers – reading and writing workshop

●    MS and HS Earth Science teachers – Worked with college professors from Montclair University on ways to integrate the district’s Little Bear Observatory and astronomy into the curriculum

●    Kindergarten teachers – Learned more about Kindergarten screening

●    Ag Committee – Discussed agriculture courses, programs and projects at the MS & HS levels

●    Physical Education – Learned about a cross-curricular approach called “actionable play” which uses movement to help students with skills in all academic subjects

●    Speech Pathology – online professional development, including lectures from renowned experts in the field

●    Health/School nurses – Learned about new diabetic instruments and technology

●    Foreign Language – Training to administer AAPPL world language assessment

●    Math – Curriculum development for math courses, and reviewed new MS math series

●    English – Discussed reading strategies for Regents exam, ideas for new film course, Criminal Justice research project, writing tasks at each grade level

●    HS Social Studies – Worked on new courses for 2016-17

●    Social Work, Guidance, Psychology, Special Education – Discussed transition planning, articulation of students and enrollments, mental health workshop

●    Technology – Planned curriculum for new MS class, “Medical Detectives”

●    English Language Learners (ELL) – Collaborated on strategies to address the needs of ELL learners

●    MS Academic Intervention Services (AIS) – Discussed using “STAR 360” to help student performance in meeting Common Core standards, and college & career readiness


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