Ball State University Professional Development Schools Network Institute for Community Education Development and School Improvement Meeting #13 November 6, 2002 9:00-2:30 Minnetrista Cultural Center/Oakhurst Gardens Summary
Dean Weaver opened the meeting with a welcome to all members and guests. He talked about the expansion of the Network and the anticipation of a PDS partnership with Wetzel Elementary School in Baumholder, Germany. BSU students are being recruited for the program. Ruth Swetnam welcomed the 96 members and guests. Apple Tree Child Development Center, Shortridge Middle School, and Burris School were introduced as new planning partners. At the recommendation of the PDS Executive Committee, the Institute members voted to accept the PDS proposals for Broad Ripple High School, Booth Tarkington Elementary School, and Orchard Park Elementary School. Broad Ripple was congratulated for completing the proposal process, and Booth Tarkington and Orchard Park were congratulated as new members of the PDS Network. Tom Schroeder gave an historical overview of the Title II projects. He highlighted ways in which Title II is supporting the professional development schools, such as attendance at the annual conference of the National Staff Development Council, summer science workshop, action research, Urban Semester, individual projects, and the LAM project. Opportunities are again available for support of innovations in teacher preparation and, through the liaisons, support for the implementation of PDS professional development plans. Cathy Siebert and Anderson High School teachers Lori Spencer and Bette Anne Currie gave an overview of "Anderson's Special Education for General Education Preservice Teachers Initiative." They have identified the critical need to prepare general education preservice teachers to work with the increasing number and kinds of special needs students included in content classrooms. The project addresses this problem through a series of activities and assignments taught and evaluated by special education high school teachers and embedded in the EDSEC 380 experiences. Ivy Disher, educator at Minnetrista Cultural Center/Oakhurst Gardens, explained the collaboration project with Burris kindergarten teacher Renee Huffman. Renee's students go to MCC/OG and meet with seniors from Westminster Village once a month. Dr. Catoe's BSU students use the resources of MCC/OG to prepare the lessons on topics that Ivy and Renee have selected. The partnership addresses the requirements of service learning and the INTASC standards for the BSU students, connects older and younger generations, and uses resources available from MCC/OG, making this a model PDS partnership. Christy Wauzzinski, also an educator at MCC/OG, described their collaboration with a fourth-grade class at Washington Carver focusing on reading comprehension enhancement. Student memberships were purchased partially by students and partially by a grant from the Delaware County Prosecutor's Office. Washington-Carver's fourth graders make periodic visits, usually by walking to Minnetrista & Oakhurst for activities connected with their current reading selection. Teacher Sara Jarvis and Christy have matched MCC resources and state academic standards with specific story threads and activities. Activities involve inquiry/hands-on science exploration, writing in journals, drawing, mapping, writing poetry, learning about local history, gaining a sense of "ownership" of Minnetrista, and a generalized comfort with visiting museums and nature learning centers. Patty Hughes introduced her staff members: Janie Carter, Mary Ann Hurt, and Steve Young. She discussed the changes in deadlines for applications and interviews of student teachers and distributed the same information in writing. James Glass, director of the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation, introduced Emily Tucker who gave the presentation on "Heritage Education." Emily and Ellen Thackery, both students in the Master of Science in Historic Preservation Program, are developing the curriculum unit this year in cooperation with junior education majors in Teachers College. The education students will prepare lesson plans for two fourth-grade classes at Burris School in the spring of 2002 using concepts developed by Emily and Ellen with the assistance of teachers Joyce Carmichael and Amy Walker. The project is jointly sponsored by the Muncie Public Library and the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation, Department of Architecture, with the assistance of Teachers College and Burris School. Dr. Melinda Schoenfeldt of Teachers College is serving as an educational advisor. The presentation closed by indicating that the curriculum unit will be available for use in Muncie PDS Schools in the 2003-2004 academic year. Teachers interested in using all or part of the unit should contact Dr. James Glass, Director, Graduate Program in Historic Preservation, firstname.lastname@example.org or 285-1920. Mary Ann Flanary from Rhoades Elementary School described their shared supervision model implemented this year. Scott Popplewell, liaison, facilitates professional development with classroom teachers, and Mary Ann Flanary, adjunct faculty, conducts the daily on-site supervision of student teachers and the weekly seminars. Cindy Dome, Mary Jo Kinnaman, Nancy Melser, and Kathy Olssen from Forest Dale Elementary School also presented their shared supervision model. Nancy Melser, liaison, and the supervising teachers share the responsibility of the formal observations and evaluations. The liaison completes 2-3 observations in the semester and the supervising teacher completes 3-4 (depending on the experience and comfort of the supervising teacher). They both complete the final evaluation. This process allows Dr. Melser to spend more time focusing on and helping with professional development. Another goal is the development of teacher leaders and making the observation and evaluation process more natural and authentic. Members and guests participated in two round table discussions. The first question was: "How can we demonstrate the impact of the PDS partnership on student learning?" Suggestions included looking at preservice students' reflections and journals, observations, interviews, action research, LAM Project, and case studies. The second discussion, led by David Dixon, centered around the topic: "How will our PDS Network become a national leader in research?" Everyone agreed that the BSU PDS Network should be a national leader in research. Overall there is a commitment. The suggested list of assets that could contribute to prominence in this area include available professional development, the strong diverse university partnerships, the available school resources, the graduate students to complete literature reviews, and support from grant money. One group suggested hiring a professionally trained person to take the lead. The barriers include a lack of research knowledge, lack of systematic documentation, lack of time, shortage of university faculty, fear of change, politics, and lack of motivation. To overcome these barriers the groups suggested there be more communication about the subject, collaboration, building of trust, financial support, tying the research to PL 221, co-authoring between professor and teacher, a commitment despite what results might indicate, and getting BSU content faculty more involved. Prior to lunch, individuals who were registered to attend NSDC in Boston, December 9-11, 2002, met with Jackie Stillisano, Title II Project Manager. Following lunch, Sara Mitchell and Rebecca Thompson from Central High School offered a workshop titled, "Worksheets Don't Grow Dendrites," and Mike McKenzie and Ron Purtlebaugh from Mitchell Elementary School presented "Best Practices in the Elementary Classroom." These workshops had originally been developed and offered to the faculty members of Central and Mitchell as a result of the presenters attending the 2001 Conference of the National Staff Development Council. The Institute Meeting adjourned at 2:30 p.m.
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