Praise the Lord and
pass the hanky...
Idaho has one of the
highest success rates in the nation for teachers attaining National
Certification. This could be because Idaho's teachers are smarter, more
professional, better trained, or it could be the result of the support and assistance
provided by the facilitators funded through the Albertson's Foundation. In any case,
the support begins with the application process and the selection criteria and then
continues with an orientation, required graduate level classes, and facilitators to
support the candidate.
first meeting was May 1 in Moscow, Idaho. We were invited to a reception for
applicants which lasted an afternoon. We met the other teachers in North Idaho
(approximately 50) who had applied, we were given opportunities to ask
questions, and we met our future facilitators. We broke into our respective areas of
certification and had the opportunity to discuss some of the background requirements that
contribute to successful National Certification. All in all the orientation served
as one more opportunity to impress upon the applicants the extensive commitment that
National Certification requires, both in time and in energy.
A week later (May 8th) we were notified whether we had been accepted for a
scholarship. I was selected as was another teacher in my building. A letter
came announcing the Albertson's scholarship and reminding us that a formal
"orientation" was scheduled for Saturday afternoon, May 22.
The formal orientation went off without a hitch. We ate lunch and then met in a
classroom at the University of Idaho. During the afternoon we filled out paperwork,
covered some time management concepts, discussed some of the criteria that would make the
coming year a little more organized and less hectic. Much of the talk was about the
"box" which we were told would arrive sometime in June.
The "box" is the collection of project assignments that must be completed by the
coming spring, 2000. Anticipation was running at a high level. Folks began
discussing which of the projects they could actually start before the new school year
begins in August/September. Me?? I decided to put together a web page
documenting my success or failure in this whole 'shebang'.