MELROSE, MA (April 24, 2020)—Governor Baker recently announced that all school buildings in the Commonwealth will remain closed for the rest of the schoolyear, but learning continues remotely—for students and for educators. Even as Melrose educators continue to prepare assignments and connect with students in this extended time of remote-learning, they are preparing for what’s next, acquiring new skills and knowledge to serve students for the remainder of this year and for whenever it is safe to return to the classroom.
To support educators and students, the District is offering a robust series of free, online professional development opportunities this spring and summer. Trainings will begin on or after May 4 and be will be convened online over a series of weeks. Offerings cover topics such as “Trauma Informed Teaching: Remote-learning and beyond,” social-emotional learning and support, breaking down racial inequities, striving for an equitable curriculum, and culturally responsive teaching for diverse English learners.
The Melrose Public School District is also a premium member of the Salem State Collaborative, which allows Melrose educators to participate in dozens of free or low-cost workshops on topics like distance-learning strategies, creating engaging videos for online learning, stress reduction, making math accessible for English language learnings, and understanding the Special Education Process.
“Our educators are working hard to rise to the challenge of this very stressful time, going above and beyond for our students during this period of extended closure while also balancing the needs of their own children and families,” said Superintendent Cyndy Taymore. “At the same time, we know that our educators want to be prepared for what comes next, particularly in the area of social-emotional learning given this time of high-stress for children and families. I understand that not everyone has the time and space to complete these professional development opportunities right now, but we did want to make them available to support their work, and we will continue to offer them throughout the spring and summer.”
Assistant Superintendent Margaret Adams echoed the Superintendent’s thoughts, adding “I am so impressed by the resiliency and perseverance of our educators, who have been tested in many ways personally and professionally. As they continue to balance family, work life, and their own self-care, we want to support them as best we can, for their own professional development and for the benefit of all students in Melrose.”
In addition to the training modules, each week the District is offering online staff get-togethers to provide a platform to listen, learn, and grow together. These optional sessions are facilitated by Instructional Coach Jill Tully and Social Emotional Learning Specialist Jess Patti.
These offerings are part of the current-year budget, approved by the School Committee. The School Committee will soon review the professional development plan for the next schoolyear.