Ensuring that teachers and administrators develop their professional skills on a regular basis is a key component of maintaining a skilled faculty and staff for any school district.
Several faculty and administrators from Proviso Township High Schools District 209 recently attended the ASCD Conference in Los Angeles, California. Conducted by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, the conference brought together teachers and administrators from school districts around the country to learn new ways to inspire students to achieve greatness in their classroom.
Ms. Kisha Lang, assistant principal for educational services at Proviso East High School, was among the District 209 staff to attend the conference. Much of the time was focused on instruction in the classroom as well as creating the proper culture and climate in each classroom. Ms. Lang said that the lessons will help administrators such as her be better evaluators of the instruction in a classroom.
"This is what is expected of a teacher," she said. "The students are aware that they have high expectations. If a class is managed well, there is no confusion."
Many of the lessons came from Charlotte Danielson, a noted education consultant who has written on teacher quality and evaluation, curriculum planning, performance assessment, and professional development.
"She has been the face of our new teacher evaluation system implemented by the State of Illinois," Ms. Lang said. "Overall, teachers should continue to be coached and given lots of feedback. That’s one of the most important aspects of the evaluation system. Administrators must visit classrooms more frequently for shorter periods of time that are most valuable. If you can go into four classrooms in one hour, you can capture what is going on in those classrooms."
Mrs. Kim Echols, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction for District 209, said the ASCD conference provides "expert and innovative solutions in professional development, capacity building, and educational leadership essential to the way educators learn, teach, and lead."