District Gets Teachers Up to Date With New Training Subsite
A K-8 school district in Bakersfield, CA, created a
its district-wide Web site to help its 900 teachers make a transition to
1-to-1 system that put 6,000 laptops in students' hands all at once.
The challenge, said the Panama-Buena
Vista Unified School
District's coordinator of curriculum assessment and instructional
Brad Grumbles, is that "teachers teach in isolation."
"They want to learn from their peers and view each
action," Grumbles said, "but we needed a solution that would provide the
opportunity for teachers to virtually visit their peers' classrooms."
So Grumbles went to the district's Web site host and
management system provider, Schoolwires,
for help with the challenge of getting
so many teachers up to date on the transition that would eventually
18,000 students in 23 schools.
"We needed a solution that would provide the
teachers to virtually visit their peers' classrooms," Grumbles said.
Schoolwires created a training subsite on the
district's Centricity2 Web site called the Teachers'
Lounge that incorporated existing
features like blogging, video streaming, discussion boards, Web link
and social media feeds.
A district technology team of three, in collaboration
Schoolwires, rolled out Teachers' Lounge at the beginning of the recent
year with curriculum links, instructional videos, shortcuts to
systems, district assessment programs, on-boarding information for new
teachers, an online chat feature and contacts to support staff.
Grumbles said the subsite is getting more than 6,000
month and he estimates that close to 75 percent of the district's
it on a regular basis. What's more, the district has opened up the site
teachers in neighboring districts and to the county education office.
Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.