Fresno County Office of Education, District support, teacher development, leadership training
UConn professor of educational psychology James C. Kaufman is an internationally recognized expert on how each individual’s creativity can be tapped in a multitude of settings. One of his primary focuses is on breaking down the preconception that creativity belongs only in the arts.
Click on picture to learn more about Dr. Kaufman
Jeff Duncan-Andrade, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of Raza Studies and Education at San Francisco State University and Co-Founder of the Teaching Excellence Network (www.10teaching.net). As a classroom teacher in East Oakland for the past 21 years, his pedagogy has been widely studied and acclaimed for producing uncommon levels of social and academic success for students (see www.rosesinconcrete.org). Duncan-Andrade lectures around the world and has authored two books and numerous journal articles and book chapters on effective practices in schools.
Caran Resciniti, School Improvement, Leadership coach - works for Fresno County Office of Education. Caran is helping organize Laton's teacher development in Common Core Standards. As well, she is helping the leadership team as a leadership coach.
West Ed, research on our Kindergarten Program 2014-2015
Partners: Who and Why?
School districts that have an entrepreneurial spirit are continuously searching for partners who have mutual interests and different skills. The time has come in our work-life when our small district is rapidly expanding and we want to continue to grow and survive. We want to maintain what has been successful – at the same time – re-create ourselves through “generative learning”; learning that enhances our capacity to create. In order for us to adapt and create, we form partnerships with provisions of giving and receiving expertise.
One reason for creating a partnership is scale; our ability to accomplish more with less by combining small budgets into one larger pool in order to purchase expensive services. An example of partnering with others to take advantage of scale is our relationship with the Southwest Transportation Department. The Southwest Transportation Agency is a public Joint Powers Authority, which serves 13 school districts in SW Fresno County. As one of its founding members, our students enjoy high-quality, safe transportation to and from school - from the best transportation agency in the United States. Another reason to partner is to support and enhance our ability to produce break-through ideas and innovations.
We identify and invite willing teacher within a school and support them with outside experts. Many researchers agree - most creative work that gets done in organizations is accomplished by two or more individuals - in this case practitioners and researchers - who work closely together. One example of this kind of collaboration is My Life School Project; a new schooling experience for senior high students who will focus on preparing for life. Several high school teachers, supported by their principal, superintendent, School Board, and university professors are designing holistic, integrated approaches to student learning. Ten senior students will take a leap from the known to the unknown by earning their senior-year credits as they encounter and struggle with complex questions and carefully designed tasks through and project-based learning. We invite you to follow along in this website while we chronicle our successes and failures as we create a new, future oriented way of learning.
We act on the belief that students and teachers are willing and capable of providing self-leadership, the intrinsically motivated behavior necessary for solving important, school-wide problems by creating real-world solutions. One example is our new website. This website was designed by Austin Minter (Class of 2016) and Valerie Santiago (Class of 2014). Their contributions were intrinsically motivated and incredibly important because they provided our District with a site that includes modern technology and a modern look. Our last reason for forming partnerships is to help other schools achieve their goals.
We firmly believe in the importance of giving back to our profession and we are looking for people in organizations who can team-up with and truly make our school district better. One example of giving back is our new teacher development framework. Several teachers volunteered to investigate best practice for teacher development and produced a new clinical supervision framework for our District. We invite you to download a copy, which can be found on the website page - Staff Library. We want Laton Unified to be a place where people continually expand their capacity to create the results they truly desire, where new and expansive patterns of thinking are nurtured, where collective aspiration is set free, and partnerships form to continually help each other by giving and receiving expertise.