Triton Voice

How Professional Development days save our School

Staff administrators tell of their importance to our district

Jonathan Reilly, Staff Writer

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Ever wonder what happens on half days when students go home but the teachers stay? Ever looked at the school calendar online and seen a note that says “Professional Development Day”? These might seem like they mean nothing but they are crucial to our school’s wellbeing. Our teachers and faculty members spend time to make sure different areas of the school are properly updated with the right technology and teaching methods.

A Professional Development day can be on a half day or when there is no school at all. During these days teachers are informed of new ways to keep their classroom modern through programs such as Google Classroom and Aspen. Professional Development days also cover social issues inside of the school such as bullying and harassment. They can also be exclusive to different areas of the school. While some go over what a modern classroom should look like, the others consist of strengthening areas of the school physically by improving the atmosphere the school brings.

 

According to our school year calendar we have exactly ten PD days this school year, starting in August and ending in May. The first Friday of every month is a PD day.

 

TV Production teacher Robert Lathrop spoke about the different areas that PD days can be used for.

 

“Some professional development days are for the district,” said Lathrop. “Those talk about bullying and how to properly use Aspen. The other half is made up of different areas of the school like the math department or the arts department. We work on things that are specific to our areas.”

 

Academic Support teacher Trina Knowles spoke about how PD days affect her students.

 

“I know that for my department we have special days to help improve the education that my students receive,” said Knowles. “I care very much about how my students grow and succeed through our curriculum. If they don’t have the right learning programs and physical resources to understand their subjects, then I need to talk about that with the district.”

 

Principal Timothy Ruggere shared how he feels PD days affect the school.

 

“Its (Professional Development Days) purpose is in the title,” said Ruggere. “We all want to try and better this school. We might bring in a speaker occasionally to hear alternative opinions and views on where to go with our development.”

 

History Teacher and Girls Basketball Coach Daniel Boyle stated the order of events that happen during PD days.

 

“We pretty much have the same routine every time,” said Boyle. “We all greet each other then sit down and talk about the importance of our attendance to the meeting. Depending on the type of meeting it is we might be in the library or in the auditorium. We typically hold meetings in any place where a large number of people can fit if necessary. We get the information on what we will be learning either by a powerpoint presentation or a professional speaker.”

 

Boyle also spoke of the kinds of meetings that are held in all of the schools.

 

“We have meetings that are loyal to our specific subjects,” said Boyle. “We also have meetings that focus solely on behavioral problems. There are meetings that talk about emotional and social development with students and how to start off the new school year correctly.”  

 

When asked if he enjoys PD days, Ruggere seemed proud of himself and his colleagues.

 

“I do enjoy them,” said Ruggere. “The staff is very driven. I admire their efforts and drive to improve on what needs to be improved upon.”

 

“I probably should say ‘yes’,” said Knowles. “ But I really don’t. (Laughs) Even though I know the significance they have on my students.”

 

“I find them to be kind of boring,” said Lathrop. “I’d personally rather be doing other things. (Laughs)”

 

Although some faculty members expressed their disliking of PD days, all understood the importance that their existence holds.

 

“Just like students are supposed to keep learning, teachers still need to learn things to help them stay current with their ways of teaching,” said Lathrop.    

 

 

 

About the Writer
Jonathan Reilly, Staff Writer
Hi, I’m Jonathan Reilly! I like to cover stories that normally are related to the arts and entertainment. Occasionally I will cover stories that deal with real world issues in this country and in others.   Outside my job of being a staff writer, I like to make short films and videos for the TritonVTV...
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