The 2012-2013 school year may be coming to an end, but for newly hired HISD teachers, preparation for the 2013-2014 school year is just beginning. During May 21-23, newly hired teachers participated in observational rounds at the School at St. George Place, McReynolds Middle School, and Furr High school during which the new hires observed HISD teachers.
“We know that we have a really large number of new teachers who will be working in the district next year, and we really wanted to give them the opportunity to set the context for what HISD has to offer,” said Gail McGee, HISD Manager of New Teacher Induction. “We want our teachers to succeed, and we know that they are going to have to hit the ground running. The more opportunities they have, the better off they’ll be.”
As part of the HISD new teacher orientation process, new hires have the opportunity to gain exposure to the HISD Teacher Appraisal and Development System, visit classrooms to gain contextual experience, and observe HISD teachers in action in a variety of content areas and grade levels. These experiences serve to prepare new hires for the New Teacher Academy, Classroom Management and Culture Institute, and additional training modules, all of which will be held in July and August.
“It’s really important for me to see what HISD expects of me, what they want my classroom to look like, what they want that relationship with a child to look like,” said first-year teacher Sharon Ellinger. “I’m really excited to be a part of HISD. I think it’s a wonderful district, and I really look forward to having a career here.”
All first-year teachers in HISD will have a campus-based mentor who will support them weekly throughout the course of the year. However, HISD doesn’t only offer support and professional development for first year teachers. Teacher Development Specialists and Key Teachers provide additional layers of support for both first-year and experienced teachers.
“You’d think that an experienced teacher doesn’t need to see great teaching, but to be great you have to continue to want to learn and to experience new things, to see different perspectives,” said Sarah Campbell, a veteran teacher with 15 years of experience. “When you get to see in action a teacher who is doing great things, you sharpen your skills and redefine what you say is great, and you strive to set the bar higher.”
If you are interested in becoming a Houston ISD teacher, visit the HISD careers website.