Berkshire Teachers to Get Training At Professional Development Day
School's out for most students on today, Election Day, but not so for about 1,400 public school teachers across the Berkshires, who will participate in the third annual countywide cavalcade of professional development workshops.
The Berkshire Eagle reports last year when about 1,100 teachers took part, hot topics focused on student anxiety and the impact of early childhood trauma. But this year, the most popular presentations center on wellness, yoga, relaxation and stress reduction, not just for students but also for teachers, said co-organizer William Ballen of the Berkshire County Superintendents Association.
Along with learning-oriented workshops, other well-attended presentations will deal with anti-bias training, suicide prevention, how pop culture and social media mold children and society, and practicing yoga and mindfulness. Nearly all of the county's 17 public school districts are participating.
Based on 862 surveys last November, teachers gave high marks to the 2017 workshops, with 94 percent saying the one they attended "met or exceeded their expectations" and 85 percent commending the variety of program offerings.
Aside from suggestions for wellness topics, the teachers surveyed also asked for more workshops on early childhood trauma.
The only school districts not taking part this year are Central Berkshire Regional in Dalton, because parent-teacher conferences are being held after early release for students on Tuesday and Mount Greylock Regional, which has a half-day of classes because the new middle and high school building had a delayed opening in September.