Written by Theresa Andersen
Welcome back to the new school year, 2022-2023. As you open your doors to the beginning of this month, I am sure that you are greeted by your teachers, staff, and students with renewed hope, excitement for refreshed learning, and recommitment to the vision and mission of your schools.
During the summer, I read something that I think all administrators and teachers must keep in mind all year. A professor of education at the University of Virginia is quoted as saying, “I think people are starting to recognize that teachers’ well-being is really critical to their ability to perform their jobs well.”
If we have learned anything from the past two years, social emotional learning is essential for students, as it is also important for teachers. Students must feel like they belong. Setting goals, asking for help, showing empathy, are not all the skills that help students thrive, also for teachers to thrive as well? To teach SEL, teachers need to be aware and continue to develop their own skills as well. Both educators and students need to feel valued and safe to succeed to their best abilities. As proposed as an effective way for teachers to start the day to make students feel valued and safe, greet them by name as they enter the classroom, one by one. Administrators, please consider doing the same.
With the full implementation of the NYS Next Generation Learning Standards for grades 3-8 beginning this year and the newly aligned state tests administered in the spring of 2023, both teachers and administrators are making sure that their students are more than prepared. We at the Fordham PDRC are preparing sessions to help with easing the anxiety associated with the implementation any new state standards.
It's important to remember that the Next Generation of Learning Standards have language that shifted from “mastering” concepts to “exploring” them within grade levels. They aim to improve clarity, reduce repetition, and ensure standards align appropriately with grade levels. Next Generation Learning Standards outline the skills and knowledge that students should be able to demonstrate at each grade level.
Please check the our website for upcoming events and sign up for professional development in literacy practices informed by the NYS Next Generation Learning Standards. Professional development for teachers can positively equip them with strategies that enhance student learning. Topics like engagement, relationship building, direct instruction, learning goals, assessments are crucial to building their self-confidence to impart goals to their students and help with setting their personal goals and achieving them. Please contact us for either in-person school professional development or virtual webinars. We can work with you to fulfill PD requirements that may have.
May you have a safe and successful new school year.
For additional information, please call 212-636-6024 or email RSalavert@fordham.edu.