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New Programs and Staff for the 2015-16 School Year
Thursday, October 15, 2015
Several new programs along with faculty/staff have been added to the Special and Alternative Education Division this year. A 12:1:4 (12 students, 1 teacher and four aides) classroom for multiply-handicapped students has been added at the Oliver Winch Middle School in South Glens Falls. Additionally, two new programs were added at the Southern Adirondack Education Center: A ninth grade BEST (BOCES Employability Skills Training) classroom and a Skills Training and Education Program or STEP classroom to help keep disinterested students in school.
A total of 23 new faculty/staff members have been hired to replace retirees/vacancies and to staff the new programs.
To get a jump start on the learning curve for new employees, a 10-day New Teacher Academy was held during the summer to provide an orientation, tours of the programs and training. The training covered lesson planning, curriculum mapping, a method that educators use to align instruction with desired goals and program outcomes, Therapeutic Crisis Intervention (TCI), and Boys Town, a data-driven model that documents behavior.
Director of Special and Alternative Education Nancy DeStefano said, “Everyone loved it. Not only did the teachers get a toolbox of resources to assist them in their classroom, it gave them an opportunity to meet and know their fellow teachers. It was a great idea to hold this prior to the start of the school year so that our new teachers were able to get off to a running start and have more time to spend with their students instead of in training.”
The new principal at the Sanford Street Teaching and Learning Center, Julie Franklin, commented on the New Teacher Academy, “I found it very useful. Not only did I learn about the programs, I had a chance to meet the new teachers, learn about the organization and tour the different programs. Now, I don’t have to miss any days during school for professional development and can focus on the program at Sanford Street. We’re off to a great start. We are continuing to build on our literacy skills and the Boys Town model that has been so successful.”
The following people were hired for the 2015-16 school year to work in the Special and Alternative Education Division: