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Hannibal educators engage in professional development opportunities

To align with the Hannibal Central School District’s mission to ensure that all students receive a quality education, teachers and support staff took advantage of several professional development opportunities recently.

Throughout the 2013-2014 academic year, dozens of educators from Hannibal attended conferences, seminars and trainings to learn teaching strategies and best practices across all subject areas.

The opportunities were provided through partnerships with SUNY Oswego, Oswego County BOCES, the New York State Education Department and other education-centered institutions.

According to the district’s outside educational expert Diane Reed, Hannibal teachers, students and the entire community will reap the rewards of the professional development offerings. A three-pronged program created by the Professional Development Advisory Committee focused on the Strategic Plan, the Advisory Team, and establishing a high-performance infrastructure.

“These initiatives are meant to move all the students forward and all the schools forward,” Reed said during a recent board of education meeting. “You’re moving in the right direction and it’s so exciting.”

Reed cited a recent Team Sheldon collaboration as one of the forward-thinking professional development opportunities that Hannibal teachers and support staff benefited from this year. The National Science Teachers Association Conference provided six Hannibal educators with more than 1,200 sessions to choose from over a four-day period.

The conference reinforced science literacy strategies, promoted the development of cooperative learning plans, and encouraged participants to engage their students through different experiments by integrating technology into their classrooms.

“It really was an amazing experience,” said special education teacher Stephanie Sweeney. “Essentially we’re all teaching toward the same standards and all these things overlap.”
In addition to the past professional development offerings, the district also has an eye on future opportunities, as school officials presented the 2013-2016 Professional

Development Plan Report. The plan aims to ensure growth and development in the current research-based best practices of instruction to meet state standards.

According to Tammy Farrell, the district’s director of Curriculum, Instruction and Special Programs, the plan provides a solid vision for the future.