Southampton is one of five Long Island school districts that has received a New York State Education Department grant to help train teachers in the new Common Core learning standards and to better prepare them for the Annual Professional Performance Review process.
This week, the district announced that it has received just over $187,000 from the State Education Department after applying for the Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness grant in early September. According to a copy of the proposal, provided by Southampton School District officials on Monday, the grant will be used to establish a comprehensive teacher leadership team within the district.
The leadership team will work to provide “in-depth training, monitoring and support to the teachers of Southampton.” In the pitch, district officials say the increased training and preparation for Common Core will improve student learning and comprehension.
“The purpose of the grant is so that as the state goes deeper into the Common Core, we will be able to develop pathways for teachers and building principals to become more familiar with the Common Core,” said Dr. Nicholas Dyno, the district’s assistant superintendent for instruction. “We wrote the proposal for a new plan we have in place, and we just found out that we were approved.”
According to Dr. Dyno, the three-school district was eligible for the grant because more than 25 percent of the district students are from low-income families. That, coupled with the district budget, made Southampton eligible for a maximum of $187,560.
With the grant, the district will provide training and supplement stipends to approximately 50 teachers who meet four areas of leadership, continue with the National Board Certification mentoring through the Peconic Teacher Center to improve and advance teachers to mastery understanding, provide literacy and data coaches to teachers, obtain additional certification for current area teachers in English as a Second Language and Bilingual Extension, support building administrators, provide opportunities for administrators to attend conferences, provide cultural courses for teachers to better reach students, develop data development skills, and to allow some teachers to attend “Closing the Achievement Gap” program.
The other four Long Island districts to receive the grant are Huntington, North Babylon, South Huntington, and West Hempstead.
“Recruitment, retention, and development of the faculty and administration in our three school buildings are key components in developing a cohesive professional learning community that provides quality instruction and education for our students along with a coherent continuum of career advancement and in depth development of skills in teachers and administrators,” the proposal reads.