In a never ending quest for professional development, four Henry County Public Schools teachers took their careers to new heights as they earned their National Board Certification.
The year long, two-part process requires the teachers to think more about how they teach.
"When I went to get my bachelors and my masters (degrees), it showed I could learn," said Dawn Scroggins, Kindergarten teacher at Campbellsburg Elementary. "But then I was released into the world to teach ... When I did National Board Certification, it makes you stop and reflect on your teaching.
"Yes, I can learn. What do I need to be a better teacher?"
Scroggins hopes the experience will help her further her mission of getting her students excited about being at school.
"Anything I can do to help the kids, and make them enjoy and want to be at school, I'll do," she said. "I'm the beginning ... they've got 12 more years, and then they go to college. Why not make them happy and try to get them to learn?"
Jason Harris, seventh and eighth grade math teacher at Henry County Middle School said the process is extensive, and the four part portfolio requires applicants to show a variety of proficiencies. One stage requires the teacher to take two students and one topic, and demonstrate instruction from start to finish. The second stage involves a video on larger group instruction, while the third stage focuses on smaller group instruction. The fourth part, Harris said, involves activities outside the classroom that support learning.
The second portion of the certification process, Harris said, involves an open response question in which the teachers have 30 minutes to respond.
Harris said the process made him more reflective about what he does.
"It makes you think, 'are the students getting it? Why aren't they getting it? What do I need to do next?'" he said. "It makes you a more thoughtful teacher.
Kristy Clark, a special education teacher at Campbellsburg Elementary, also said going through the certification process made her think more about what she does.
"I really think the National Board Certification has changed the way I teach," she said. "I look more at it. It required me to analyze and reflect on my teaching. I did that in the past, but not to this degree. It's already made an impact."
HCPS Kricket McClure said there are nine NBCT teachers currently employed by the district.
"I think it causes them to be very reflective about their practice," she said. "It's very much a way to grow."
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