Professional development should remain a pandemic priority

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For Diane Lauer, Assistant Superintendent of Priority Programs and Academic Support at St. Vrain Valley Schools in Colorado, COVID couldn’t stop teacher training. In fact, her work became that much more important.

In this conversation with eSchool News, Diane breaks down her strategies for keeping faculty on point with technology and instruction. [Edited for clarity.]

eSN: Before the pandemic struck, would it be fair to say there was a general resistance amongst some teachers, who would be skeptical of various aspects of professional development? How have remote setups changed the way you teach those teachers?

DL: You just put a spear through my heart. Because you just described “professional development hostages.” And I hate those—bring everybody’s cookies down to the library and lock the door and feed them cake and tell them this is awesome. Everybody’s got their chair. and then they finally get to leave. That is not professional development in St. Vrain. The first thing that you have to have is a choice. You have to make a connection to the “why,” and you have to give people lots of opportunities, both in-person and online.

Kevin Hogan
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