March 21, 2010

Train your Entire Staff on a Limited Budget

Filed under: March 2010 — mbrown @ 7:32 pm

Many technology coordinators are beginning to schedule their staff development sessions for summer. Finding cost-effective ways to train your entire staff can be a challenge. Fortunately there are a few options available to schools that are working with a limited budget.

Flex Title Funds
Title II.A funds are intended for professional development. If a school’s Title II.A allocation is not sufficient however, there is the option to flex funds from other Title programs into a Title II.A account. For example, up to 50 percent of Title IV funds can be flexed into a Title II.A account to use for professional development. Schools can also use Title II.D funding to purchase technology and professional development.

Partner with Another School
Sharing the cost with another school in your district is a terrific way to provide high-quality professional development to your staff. For example, you may decide to schedule ALTEC’s Technology Integration Intensive, which is a completely customized five-day training session complete with online follow-up designed to help teachers make the most of new or existing technologies at your school. Each school can select a small group of teachers to complete the training, then select one teacher from each group to provide one-day training sessions to the rest of the staff throughout the year.

Online Courses
Online courses are another cost-effective way to provide professional development. With such busy schedules, many teachers appreciate the convenience of being able to complete their coursework at times that are more convenient for them. If you have teachers who are new to online courses, a great thing to do is to partner beginners with more experienced teachers to collaborate while taking the course. Even beginners to online courses soon find that after two or three sessions they are comfortable navigating the online course software on their own.

Here are a couple of professional development providers that you may be interested in contacting:

ALTEC staff has more than 15 years of experience providing onsite professional development to help teachers integrate technology into the classroom in highly-effective ways. ALTEC specializes in custom training so that schools have the flexibility to design professional development based on the specific hardware and software available at your school.

Annenberg Media
Annenberg Media provides a wide variety of affordable workshops, online courses, and materials. Annenberg materials are available for free at the Web site but are also available for purchase online. Annenberg is dedicated to providing teachers with excellent teaching methods and materials to help K-12 teachers increase their expertise in their fields.

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