Jul 16, 2013

Districts to Share Strategies For Supporting Educators And Students

BATON ROUGE, La—The Department today announced that nearly 200 district participants, including 35 superintendents and their staff, met in Lafayette to participate in a day-long collaboration event. This statewide collaboration centered on providing districts the opportunity to share best practices, address concerns, and prepare to support their teachers and principals in the coming year as Louisiana transitions to more rigorous standards and assessments.  Seventeen districts and six teacher leaders took the lead on sharing their practices with educators from across the state.

“Our state has great leadership in our schools and districts, and this collaboration provides an opportunity for superintendents and staff to prepare to better support educators as they enter into the coming school year,” said State Superintendent John White.

The event opened with a presentation by Superintendent White that highlighted the state’s goals and strategy for providing support for superintendents, district staff, and educators in the coming year, specifically touching on resources like the Classroom Support Toolbox, Teacher Leaders, and Network Teams as sources of support for districts.

Superintendents and staff had the opportunity to attend a choice of 21 different sessions  where districts presented on a variety of topics such as setting rigorous student learning targets, making curriculum and assessments decisions, building a collaborative culture, establishing inter-rater reliability in evaluation practices, and utilizing Teacher Leaders to support curriculum, communication, and collaboration.  These sessions centered on the themes of raising the bar for students and supporting educators through the focus areas.

"This collaboration provides an invaluable opportunity for superintendents, district and network staff to come together and share ideas about how to best support our educators and students,” said Superintendent Ed Cancienne, Iberville Parish School System.  “As districts, we are working to set clear goals about what we expect from students, teachers, and ourselves as we move into the upcoming school year."

Through a recent reorganization, the Department has focused on creating Network Teams, staff that focuses on partnering with districts through on-the-ground, targeted support in implementing critical goals. The closing session focused on network and district staff developing concrete next steps coming out of the event to implement their goals. These goals range from working towards increasing the percentage of students entering Pre-K ready to learn to increasing the percentage of students on track for college or a career.  During the past few months network staff have supported districts in planning for the 2013-2014 school year.  Specifically, they have worked with districts on making decisions as to how they will support their educators across the four focus areas.  This event provided an opportunity to dig into the quality work that has been happening across these areas and the practices that influence quality.

The Department also recently launched the District Support Toolbox as part of a larger Classroom Support Toolbox to specifically focus on supporting district staff during this transition with the goal of creating effective administration. This toolbox provides resources to help district staff set goals, create and implement successful systems, and evaluate results.

To learn more about the Department’s efforts to support districts, please click here to view the District Support Toolbox

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