Pam Yoder, District Administrator for the Oakfield School District, and Joe Heinzelman, Junior High and High School Principal were visited on July 12, 2012. The discussion focused on four areas concerning district policy; district expectations of new teachers; TPA and producing a student teacher video; and the following programs:
- The Add on Licensure Program extends the license of teachers. The program is individually tailored to help teachers or districts enhance their flexibility in curriculum areas.
- The Educational Leadership Program has the flexibility for districts to choose course work that focuses on their district goals and initiatives. This course work could be made part of an individual Master’s of Science Degree for teachers in the district
- A new Principal Licensure Program is now available and is being offered in site-based cohorts or on-campus.
The following key points were also discussed during the visit:
- New teachers need to understand RTI and the common core standards. They must understand how students learn. They must also be able to work with other teachers and be willing to take educational risks. No matter what grade level or curriculum area, all teachers must understand the importance of literacy in teaching. How to use data for student assessment is very important for new teachers.
- The district current doesn’t have a policy that would give the students the option of not being in the classroom if the class is being used in a video for student teaching. This would have to be added to a current policy. The district would be able to upload a student teachers video to the Internet for evaluation by an outside company.
- The district feels that the Add On Licensure is a good program to offer to districts. It will be important in the future for districts to look for new teachers with multiple licensures. Some districts will pay for the new license but others will not pay. Teachers may not look at the program if the district doesn’t reimburse them.
- An 18-week format for student teaching would be more beneficial for student teachers and the classroom students. A co-teacher format would also be valuable for the student teacher and the classroom teacher.