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Making Sense and Moving Forward:
The Heart of Our Work


Background and Intent

For many of us, making sense of our individual and collective experience over the past three months has been extremely complex. Likewise, creating a path forward is equally, if not more, complicated and oftentimes our potential and chosen responses feel woefully insufficient. However, our ultimate success in tackling these issues lies squarely in our ability to empathize, problem solve, and successfully adjust in the short and long-term. 

As such, the Social/Emotional and Teaching and Learning Departments collaborated in building a Professional Development Framework with the intent of helping us better understand where we have been and how we can move forward. Increasing self and social awareness through a framework that honors choice in PD, connection with colleagues, and increased professional competency is the heart of this work. We acknowledge this is only a small step in our path forward, but we believe it can strengthen the collective understanding necessary for durable and equitable support of our students, families, and staff moving forward. 

Professional Development Framework

Here you will find Professional Development (PD) opportunities based on the recommendations of local and national leaders consisting of webinars, modules, videos and readings. These materials are organized into four related strands: Trauma, Equity, Relationship Building, and Self-Care.

Strands are further organized into three categories: Foundational Principles, Recommended Structures, and Recommended Practices.

  1. Foundational Principles consist of essential background information with varying degrees of time investment. This allows for not only topic choice, but also choice in time committed.
  2. Recommended Structures focus on best practice adjustments to classroom and/or personal systems based on the foundational concepts.
  3. Recommended Practices consist of high leverage strategies that can be implemented as students and staff are engaged in specific content (e.g. trauma strategies while teaching reading, history, music, etc).

In short, the PD opportunities are organized to increase foundational understanding, provide steps for specific structural changes, and implement highly effective “in the moment” practices, while allowing for individualized content, delivery, and time commitment.

Here are a few more considerations in using the PD opportunities:

  1. While the PD is obviously not “mandatory” we hope staff will take some time this summer to engage with the framework in preparation for the “face to face” return of our students this fall.
  2. Beginning with the Foundational Principles is highly recommended. This allows for sufficient background knowledge in making the recommended structural changes and implementing specific recommended practices.
  3. There is no correct order or in which to access the resources other than starting with the Foundational Principles. Likewise, there is no specific number of resources to complete. The framework is meant to be flexible and allow people the opportunity to engage with the areas that interest them the most and for the amount of time they have available.
  4. Please check back here throughout the 2020-2021 school year and beyond. We will continue to add more resources to the four strands and add additional strands based on student, family, and staff’s evolving needs. Additionally, look for changes to these pages down the road that will make the framework simpler and easier to access.