What's the best way to improve student learning? It's having the very best teachers in the classroom, according to Clawson Schools Superintendent Monique Beels.
This week Clawson teachers are participating in a support and assessment program aimed at making them the best they can be in the classroom. The teachers are observed by their peers and then receive feedback about various aspects of their teaching practice.
"Using this coaching model, where teachers observe each other and then debrief with each other, is a way to strengthen and build their practice. It uses the expertise of all the teachers on our staff," Beels said. "Sometimes when your teaching there may be things going on in your room that you may not notice, but somebody else might."
On Tuesday, six teachers participated in the first round of observations, focusing on the delivery of subject matter.
In one day, teachers at Kenwood Elementary observed Spanish, art and social studies lessons.
“We are writing down what we observe,” said Amy Carpenter. “What are the teacher's moves that engage the students?”
Teachers follow a scripted protocol that is non-judgmental. They take careful notes and then debrief.
"We keep our opinions out," Carpenter said. "It's about getting other ideas."
More teachers are expected participate in the voluntary program next month.