NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- The City School District of New Rochelle, working to fulfill its mission to increase the consistency of its curriculum across all of its elementary schools, has been implementing continuous professional development of its teachers around district half-days and during other planned days in the school year.
Across all elementary schools, teachers have adopted and are implementing reading and writing curricula developed by experts from the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project. In addition, this year, all elementary schools adopted TERC Investigations as a common math program. Both reflect the rigor of New York State Common Core Learning Standards.
Throughout the school year, professional development has been provided to elementary teachers across all schools by outside consultants to strengthen their instructional practices in literacy and math. Also, each school has a math lead, and there are district math leads who support teachers in implementing the new math curriculum they have been exposed to this year.
Literacy trainers are in the schools often. They go into a school to model new best practices for the teachers, who watch and learn in a lab setting, and then give those teachers the opportunity to practice with students. The trainers return at a later date to follow up with the teachers, answer questions and provide feedback on the teachers' use of these new instructional practices. This continuous learning model makes the professional learning more meaningful.
"I think it's fantastic that teachers get consistent support from professional trainers or teacher leaders as they explore new best practices," said Assistant Superintendent and Chief Academic Officer Dr. Magda Parvey. "I think it's great that teachers get to learn from professionals and see how to enhance their practices with their students."
Each school has approximately 10-15 professional development days during the school year with staff developers to support school learning. A "cohesive districtwide approach to teaching and learning," is "Objective A" of the "Measurable Objectives" as part of the CSDNR Strategic Road Map.