Dr. Steve Constantino states that the top predictor of a child’s success in school is meaningful and relevant family engagement. Dr. Constantino is the superintendent of Williamsburg-James City School District in Virginia. His family engagement journey began in March 1995 when he became principal at Stonewall Jackson High School. He described his first impression of the school and the tangible barrier to families feeling welcomed: the counter that greeted “visitors” at the school’s main entrance; he called it “the imposing bit of architecture in the main office that many administrators use to keep parents at bay.” On this day, his first day as high-school principal, he tore it down and that “imposing bit of architecture” became an allegory to promote positive school culture and to guide his family engagement practice and success.
Does your district have “an imposing piece of furniture?”
Online courses can help students pursue specialized interests and their meet graduation requirements. Chelsea Halbert at Genesee Valley CSD who has a strong interest in Music is currently taking Online Music Appreciation. An extremely accomplished young lady who can play eight instruments Chelsea enjoys learning more about music online. Chelsea currently plays Tuba, Trumpet, and Bari Saxophone in Genesee Valley's Band and Jazz band. She is presently pursuing an Advanced Regents Diploma. Her online course and her band courses are helping her meet her required number of Music credits for an Advanced Regents Diploma. She enjoys taking an online class because she can work on her own schedule. She likes that she has the freedom "to choose what notes to take and when to work". She recommends that students seeking to take online courses take subjects that they "are really interested in."
Students and teachers (of COSER 501 member districts) can access hundreds of thousands of digital resources using CABOCES Digital Kids.
Users may login to CABOCES DIGITAL KIDS to search clips and images or pass through to:
Brain Pop (Jr., ESL, Espanol),Discovery, Learn 360, Sylvan Dell eBooks, Teaching Books, Tumblebooks, Soundszabound, Gale Cengage, Regents Review
In September, I was given the opportunity to utilize an iPad cart for my classes until February. I used this opportunity to investigate how well high school students would be able to use them in a limited setting, for a limited amount of time. My primary goal was to try to establish a web source in which I could continue to interact with them online after the iPads were gone. I found two sites very useful for that purpose: Google Drive and MyBigCampus. When I created a document for the students, I uploaded it to Google Drive. The students then used their iPads to access and open the document in an iPad app, Notability. Having accessed the document, they could then edit and take notes directly using the Notability App. Another useful app that the students used was MyBigCampus. I would create entrance or exit tickets that the students would need to access on the application and answer. This app was also helpful to share links, images, audio and video files, and to create message board type activities for the class. MyBigCampus and Google Drive are both programs that function independently of the iPads, and I can continue to utilize them for the rest of the school year.
Cindy Mikowicz and Mary Parr from Hinsdale Central School during the latest online
Adobe Connect meeting February 12th with Mark Carls from CABOCES
With the adoption of the Common Core State Standards this school year and a new Algebra I Common Core assessment this June, many area teachers have joined forces to share ideas and strategies to tackle this new challenge. Area teachers met face-to-face back on October 8th to begin planning the best way to approach the new standards and assessment. Since then, they’ve met after school in online CABOCES Adobe Connect meetings. In these online meetings they’ve continued to discuss their progress and to share ideas with their fellow educators. This Algebra I group will meet face-to-face again at the end of March and will have one final online meeting before the June 3rd Common Core Regents exam. Since this is the first year of implementation of the Common Core Algebra I exam the date of the exam was moved up to this earlier June date. These Algebra I students may also have the opportunity to take the Integrated Algebra exam during the regular Regents week the morning of June 20th.
See our Calendar of Events on our webpage for this and all our offerings: www.caboces.org/iss
Olean City School District is currently piloting a new online supplemental math program—TenMarks, which will provide students with additional individualized math practice! A pilot group of 1st grade through Algebra I students, recently began using the program in January after teachers were provided start up information through a TenMarks webinar.
Innovation is defined as a new idea, device or method; the introduction of something new. Chris Lehman of Philadelphia, PA certainly ran with the idea of innovation when working to develop the vision and mission of the Science Leadership Academy. SLA, for short, is an inquiry-driven, project-based 1:1 school in Philadelphia that has been upheld as a pioneer in education reform. Lehman, founder and acting principal of the school, welcomes teachers, district leaders, and technology specialists to the school each year in the annual EduCon Conference. This year, the conference was centered upon one essential theme: should our schools, and ultimately the world, be more open and transparent? Through a series of workshops and breakout sessions, participants had the unique opportunity to explore this question, analyzing how open and transparent we can be in the world of education.
Channeling the Power of Teacher Leaders: Working to create a common language around teacher evaluations
As districts continue to implement a new system for evaluating teachers, it is important that there be a common language about the expectations of teachers in the evaluation process, from what they should be doing inside and outside of the classroom. In an effort to facilitate this common language, CABOCES has welcomed a cohort of teacher leaders from several districts in the region, who are continuing to learn about the process of conducting an evaluation on a teacher. They have practiced the craft of observations and reviewed the nuances in the language of the evaluation platforms that have been selected by districts throughout the state. These teacher leaders are taking their knowledge back to their home schools, having conversations about the true process of teacher evaluations - from why we do it, to the time it takes.
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