The Professional Development Department
The Professional Development Department facilitates the planning and implementation of ongoing, job-embedded, and systemic professional development for teachers, administrators and classified staff. All professional development is based upon the Learning Forward Professional Development Standards (www.learningforward.org), which have also been adopted by the Arizona Department of Education.
Professional development in the Washington Elementary School District occurs in many formats, such as professional learning communities, academies, book study groups, classroom observations, team planning, instructional coaching, teacher induction, and classes offered after the work day as well as on weekends and in the summer. WESD also provides training and support systems that are required for teacher certification or classification as highly qualified by the NCLB Federal guidelines.
Washington Elementary School District offers a three-year teacher induction program titled BEGIN. Teachers with 0-1 years of previous teaching experience are provided professional development, coaching, and grade/content areas specific teaching strategies. Master teachers serve as cadre leaders and provide practical teaching and management techniques to the program participants, as well as offer classroom coaching and observations to assist with specific needs.
The Professional Development Department facilitates the National Board Certification Process that is open to WESD teachers with five or more years of experience. The candidates are supported and mentored by WESD Nationally Board Certified teachers before, during and after completing the rigorous process.
Other areas of interest that the Professional Development Department facilitates are:
Instructional Coaching for classroom teachers
Professional Learning Academy for administrators
Summer Curriculum Academy
Coordination of the University Intern and Student Teacher Program
Program Coach Training
Professional Learning Community Wednesdays Model
New Administrator Training Program
ASPIRE Program for recruiting potential administrators