February 2018                                        

Missouri Schools Recognized as Exemplary Professional Learning Communities
Twenty-one schools have been named Exemplary Professional Learning Communities Schools for promoting cultures focused on collaborative learning while effectively using data to increase student achievement.

The 2017-18 Exemplary Schools were honored during the 2018 Powerful Learning Conference on Jan. 30.


Public Hearings Scheduled for Vocational Rehabilitation Services
Five public hearings on vocational rehabilitation services have been scheduled in March throughout the state. Events will be held in Cape Girardeau, Raytown, Springfield, St. Louis and Columbia. Click here to find the date and time at the location nearest to you.

Join Us for #LoveTeaching Week
Do you have a great reason why you #LoveTeaching? Share it during Valentine’s Day week to inspire the next generation of educators. Teachers around the country take to blogs and social media during the week of Feb. 14-21 to connect and share all there is to love about their career using the #LoveTeaching hashtag.

The purpose of the #LoveTeaching movement is to highlight positive stories of the profession. The campaign also aims to inspire other teachers, including aspiring educators, to follow their dream of entering the profession.

Use #LoveTeaching and tag @MOEducation in your social media posts to show appreciation both as or for a teacher during this special week!

 

Access, Opportunity, Equity: Provide all students access to a broad range of high-quality educational opportunities from early learning into post-high school engagement                      

Elementary School Sways City to Allow Chickens on Campus
Students at John Thomas School of Discovery in Nixa presented the local city council a “fowl lesson” and, in turn, got the clearance they hoped for to begin raising chickens as part of a focus on science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) coursework. Students of all ages will be involved with the entire life cycle of the chickens, ranging from incubating and hatching the eggs, to caring for the chickens and selling eggs and other items at a local farmers market.

Counties Come Together for Course Exchange
A new course exchange program in Christian County will allow county superintendents, counselors and high school principals to open up leftover seats in classes to students of other districts whose schools cannot offer that same class.

“We have 300 kids in [the Ozark School District] agriculture department, but Spokane and Sparta have good programs as well, so Nixa might be interested in sending kids there,” said superintendent Kevin Patterson. “That’s how a small school can benefit a large school.”


Benefits of Music Education
Research has indicated that music in the early years supports development in many areas. Some of the many skills that music promotes in early childhood education include listening skills, memory, aural discrimination, language, spoken skills, vocabulary skills, reading skills and math skills. Music helps children cooperate, think and problem solve. As music is ingrained in culture as well, it is an essential element in teaching that touches all ways children learn.

‘She’s My New Grandma’: 27 Sites Utilize Volunteer Grandparents to Assist Student Learning
A network of nearly 100 “foster grandparents” throughout western Missouri are working one-on-one with elementary school children who are in need of extra help or attention.

“The inter-generational relationship benefits both the volunteers and the kids,” said Jackson County representative Summer Griffith. “In some of our sites, the kids have experienced real trauma, and having a safe and loving foster grandparent can make all the difference in their education.”


#MOFightsOpioids Service Project Award Winners Announced
Congratulations to the top schools from DESE’s #MOFightsOpioids Career and Technical Service Organization (CTSO) community service project this past fall! The winning PSA will be made available for public broadcast in the months to come.
     • 1st Place: Marceline R-V (FBLA-PBL, FCCLA, FFA)
     • 2nd Place (TIE): Centralia R-VI (FBLA-PBL, FFA) and Montgomery Co. R- II                  (FBLA-PBL, FCCLA, FFA)
     • 3rd Place: Thayer R-II (FBLA-PBL, FCCLA, FFA)


Teachers and Leaders: Prepare, develop and support educators to ensure an effective teacher in every classroom and an effective leader in every school

Positivity is Infectious
“Our students expect us to be knowledgeable and rightly so, but they deserve teachers to be so much more than educated in their areas of expertise,” said Nichole Tews, a National Technical Honor Society advisory for the Cass Career Center in Harrisonville. “They deserve the kind of educator who is dedicated to the profession, who inspires and works for the success of each student.”

In a recent Guest Educator Column, Tews explains how the word teacher is more than just an ordinary word and how it evokes the passion she has for the teaching profession.

Nominate an Outstanding Teacher for Regional Teacher of the Year
The 2018-19 Regional Teacher of the Year selection process is underway, and nominations are being collected from now until April 17, 2018. If your local district doesn’t have a formal process in place to select a district teacher of the year, don’t miss this opportunity to nominate an inspiring teacher who you feel makes a difference in the lives of students. Learn more about the nomination process here.

Teacher Expertise Wanted as Advanced Placement Readers
More than 15,000 educators nationwide exchange ideas and experiences through their experiences as Advanced Placement (AP) readers. High school teachers who currently teach an AP course in a classroom and have at least two years of experience have the opportunity to apply for weeklong summer programs. This year, the Kansas City Convention Center will serve as one reading site, as readers are needed in multiple subjects.

To learn more and to begin the application process, visit the official AP Central homepage.

Guest Columnists Wanted for Missouri Educators Site
One specific feature of the Missouri Teachers website is a section where educators get their chance to share their passion about teaching as a “Guest Educator Columnist.” If you would like to contribute a column regarding a specific teaching experience, classroom methods or how you’ve implemented something you learned from a mentor/previous teacher, please contact the DESE Communications office.


The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, or disability in its programs and activities. Inquiries related to Department programs and to the location of services, activities, and facilities that are accessible by persons with disabilities may be directed to the Jefferson State Office Building, Office of the General Counsel, Coordinator - Civil Rights Compliance (Title VI/Title IX/504/ADA/Age Act), 6th Floor, 205 Jefferson Street, P.O. Box 480, Jefferson City, MO 65102-0480; telephone number 573-526-4757 or TTY 800-735-2966; email civilrights@dese.mo.gov
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