Learning Forward Colorado Annual Conference
January 27, 2011
Dr. Thomas Guskey

Neither snow nor ice nor interstate highway closures could deter Dr. Tom Guskey from arriving in Colorado to share his work with Colorado educators! People from around the state gathered to learn from & with Dr. Guskey . and their colleagues.

Dr. Guskey's content focused around two important topics: Improving Student Learning with Standards & Assessments & Improving Teacher Learning with Professional Development. A portion of the afternoon was spent in small groups by schools, teams, or job-alike groups. Each group had the opportunity to work with a Learning Forward Colorado facilitator or on their own. Research tells us that this model of professional development is extremely effective as it facilitates transfer of learning. Educators were able to take Guskey's content and work with it to meet their specific needs & situation.

Some participant comments include the following:

  • Today's learning increased & deepened my knowledge, attitudes, & flexibility of thought.
  • Today's content was applicable to my work in so many ways.
  • As a school going through restructuring, this professional learning came at a very appropriate time.
  • The combination of learning new content for part of the day and then having time to meet & plan with colleagues was very powerful.
  • Awesome experience! Guskey was amazing.

Learning Forward Colorado also "rolled out" their new name . Learning Forward Colorado. An overwhelming majority of Learning Forward Colorado members voted for the name change. Learning Forward Colorado followed the lead of our parent organization, formerly the National Staff Development Council whose name has changed from NSDC to Learning Forward.

In addition the O'Rourke Prize for a distinguished Colorado educator was presented to Kay Newcomer, the instructional coach at Bear Creek High School. Among the prizes included in this award was a check for $500 in honor of Dr. Bill O'Rourke, a distinguished Colorado educator. A contingency of colleagues from Bear Creek High was there to help celebrate Kay and her outstanding contribution to education.

Thanks to all participants for your contributions to the learning environment. This model of professional development - time for new content & time to work with colleagues using the new learning - is a most effective professional development model!

View slideshow of this event.

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