Purdy school district sets inservice plans

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Staff to use focused training to help students

As the 2018-2019 school year came to an end, Purdy school district took some time to ask what things staff and teachers would like to see during their inservice days for the next school year.

Mindi Gates, Purdy superintendent, said there were six areas that are all based on professional development survey that the staff gets every spring.

“It asks the staff to rank areas of professional development for the next school year,” she said. “The top area that had the most interest was emergency preparedness, and number two was mental health wellness and trauma informed.”

Gates said the mental health wellness and trauma informed area also included homelessness.

“Number three was dyslexia training, and number four was student learning folders,” she said. “Number five was PBIS, which is our positive behavior intervention system, and finally, number six was technology.”

Gates said those are six things that as a professional development committee the school district focuses on and the staff ranks.

“The six topics do change from year to year,” he said. “Some may stay but some might change based on what teachers have expressed interest on or based on things district staff is working on.”

Gates said the process takes place on the built in professional development days for the next school year.

“We will plan to provide professional development focused around these areas,” she said. “For example, on emergency preparedness, as an administrative team, we will look over our handbooks on how we respond to emergencies.

“We will make changes and then focus on the topic on one of the professional development days. Then, we will talk to teachers on that day about what we need to do with our students for that topic.”

Gates said the same process will go into the other topics.

“A couple of years ago, we partnered with the Clark Center and they came in on a few of our professional development days and did a mental health first aid kind of presentation,” she said. “That really got some great reviews from our staff, and they would like something else on the trauma informed. That has been kind of a hot topic in school districts lately, and we want to look at how we can get more information about that.”

Gates said last school year was the first time districts were held accountable for dyslexia screening and reporting.

“With that state requirement we have to make sure teachers are receiving at least two hours of dyslexia training,” she said. “We will spend a professional development day on each of these topics.”

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