We at OPSRC pride ourselves on providing high-quality professional development for our member schools, and in the coming school year, our goal is to greatly increase the number of PD opportunities to which those teachers and leaders have access. In future blog entries, I’ll focus on many of the PD sessions that our team has developed, but today, I’d like to highlight the Refresh Regional Summits that we’ve just recently launched.
Since the inception of the OPSRC two years ago, I’ve frequently been asked when we would be holding our conference. I've never had a good answer to the question because we’ve never planned to hold an annual conference, and I’m not sure if we ever will decide to hold one. Earlier this year, our team discussed the possibility of scheduling a statewide conference, and we decided that given the budget challenges faced by schools statewide, it wouldn’t make sense to ask schools to spend their dollars on travel to attend an event. Instead, our team decided that a much more responsible and effective approach would be to hold regional events, as this would allow schools to send as many employees as possible. We’ve launched a new website, which provides all logistics and registration information. I’d like to highlight a few aspects of the summit:
- When and Where: We have 5 summits spread across the state, and we’ve tried to schedule the events on days where schools are typically closed. Locations and dates are as follows: Ardmore, August 2; Tulsa, October 12; Oklahoma City, January 2, 2017; McAlester, February 2, 2017; Woodward, May 17, 2017.
- Target audience: Our goal is to provide PD for teachers, administrators and school personnel across the state.
- Cost: Employees at member schools are able to attend the summit for free. That’s right--all staff from member schools can attend for free. If your school isn’t a member--we hope to change that in the near future--but you’re welcome to attend for $100. However, if your district joins the OPSRC, all registration fees are waived. We think you’ll find that the value far outweighs the cost.
- Topics: Given our broad audience, we will provide PD on a large number of topics that meet the needs and interests of teachers, administrators and other school personnel. We will soon be listing many of those sessions on the Refresh website so you can have an idea of what to expect. Further, all registrants are asked to provide input on specific content they would like to see at the events, and we plan to incorporate those requests as well.
If you visit the website, you’ll see all of these details and can register. One note--while these events are free for members, space is limited, so we encourage you to sign up before it's too late.