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Facilitating Learning in Professional Experience: Mentoring for Success Module 3 - The Role of the Site Coordinator.

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Presentation on theme: "Facilitating Learning in Professional Experience: Mentoring for Success Module 3 - The Role of the Site Coordinator."— Presentation transcript:

1 Facilitating Learning in Professional Experience: Mentoring for Success Module 3 - The Role of the Site Coordinator

2 As schools/sites become more involved in the education of Preservice Teachers the role of the Site Coordinator has been highlighted in research journals and by Mentor Teachers, universities and Preservice Teachers, as pivotal in ensuring successful outcomes for all concerned in the process. This module will provide the opportunity to explore and discuss the changing and challenging role of the Site Coordinator in the Professional Experience process in regards to: –The willingness for the Site Coordinator to embrace the role of educational leader within the school in articulating the schools responsibility for preservice education and actively supporting and building on the partnership that exists between the school and the university. –The culture of service regarding the education of PSTs developed within the school is often attributed to the commitment and understanding of the school’s role in pre-service education by the Site Coordinator –The need for the Mentor Teachers of the present and importantly the future to be mentored themselves in order to become confident and knowledgeable in their role, and this in turn is another significant function of the role –The degree to which the Site- Coordinator is able to manage and value this complex role often determines the willingness of mentor teachers to commit to the role So how do they do it? an introduction

3 In the article ‘Changing roles, relationships and responsibilities in changing times,’ Site Coordinators were interviewed about their perceptions of their current roles. What they said exemplifies the changing role their perception of the changing nature of the role…Changing roles, relationships and responsibilities in changing times ‘I build in time to meet with the Preservice teachers to discuss the “bigger picture of being a teacher.” ‘ ‘I deliberately discuss issues with them that have conflicting arguments.’ ‘ A whole school approach to learning is important – the pre-service teachers need to feel part of a learning team from a community of learners rather than a community of experts.’ ‘When we started I saw it mainly as an organising role…I have learned that it is no different to the role that you have as an education leader with your own staff…’ ‘the relationships and roles seem to fit together and work together. All Site Coordinators emphasized the time and commitment that is needed in undertaking the role and the need for the school to support this. article

4 The following role definition is outlined in course information books and in Mentor Teacher information sent to school prior to the Professional Experience placement Role and Expectations of Site Co-ordinators The role of the Site Co-ordinator is to: Provide oversight of the Professional Experience program on site; Support Preservice Teachers and Mentor Teachers in their roles; including dissemination of information from university regarding expectations for Professional Experience Meet with the University Mentor throughout the professional experience; Co-ordinate school wide programs for the Preservice Teachers; Provide feedback to the Preservice Teacher and contribute to the overall level of achievement on the report. the role as determined by the school of education at unisa

5 A recent survey was conducted by UniSA amongst 144 Graduate Preservice Teachers to ascertain ‘what constitutes and contributes to a high quality professional experience placement Of the 144 surveyed, 74 highlighted the importance of the role of the Site Coordinator and the support of the school staff in general to their needs as being highly significant to their sense of success. feedback from pre-service teachers on the role of site coordinator

6 A supportive Site Coordinator: Greets you by name and makes you feel welcome Provides an initial induction to the school Encourages you to become involved in the life of the school and values your contribution Shows interest in your development throughout the placement and provides feedback Observes you teaching and writes constructive comments on the final report Meets with university mentor and provides time for you to do so Supports the staff commitment to Preservice teachers as part of culture/school environment/ commitment to ethos of mentoring Preservice teachers Prepared to share ’tricks of the trade- treats you as a professional ‘ what they said specifically

7 Site Coordinators reflecting on their respective roles Watch the video clips of the two Site Coordinators talking about their respective roles: Task: Having watched Ashley and Adrienne talk about their role, and taking into consideration the previous information presented use the Module 3 blog to focus on the response of one of the Site Co-ordinatorsModule 3 blog Points for discussion: -What resonated for you in your particular role? -What skills do these coordinators possess that would assist them in their respective roles? -In what ways could what was said assist you to feel ‘energised’ or ‘rewarded?’ -Do you believe that your commitment to PST education is reflected in your ‘whole school culture?’ -In what ways could you as a school improve the way you do this? activity 1 (Click on the videos to view)

8 Given what you have discussed in the forum, spend 5 mins writing in the Module 3 wiki to share what you would consider to be crucial in a position description for your idea of an effective Site Coordinator.Module 3 wiki Use the Role of Site Coordinator (Handout 1) as a guide and be explicit about the tasks, knowledge and personal qualities required for the position. It might be your next job!Role of Site Coordinator (Handout 1) As a group edit the wiki to develop one agreed to, description for your group Ask: Is it inclusive of the Role of the Site Coordinator? Is it doable? Do we have the resources people/physical including time? If not how do we create them? what are the characteristics needed to be an effective site coordinator?

9 For this activity you will refer to the Scenario from Module 2 (Handout 2).Scenario from Module 2 (Handout 2). This time however you are asked to view it through a slightly different lens. Sue’s dilemma is one with which you may be able to identify. You will notice that the Site Coordinator is only mentioned once in the scenario and that it was when she/he asked Sue to have a Preservice Teacher. Use the Module 3 discussion forum to discuss the support Sue would have received had her Site Coordinator had the skills mentioned in your position description from the last exercise and those exemplified by the Site Coordinators in the videos previously viewed.Module 3 discussion forum Use the Module 3 discussion forum to discuss how the Coordinator would have worked with other stakeholders in the scenario eg, University Mentor, Preservice teacher etc?Module 3 discussion forum activity 2

10 Task: Read the extract from the article ‘Reconceptualising professional experience in pre service teacher education....reconstructing the past to embrace the future.’Reconceptualising professional experience in pre service teacher education....reconstructing the past to embrace the future Spend some time discussing the 3 orientations; traditional reflective learning communities, and your experience of each. Use the Module 3 blog to describe how would you as a Site Coordinator assist your staff to move from the somewhat ‘traditional orientation’ of ‘theory into practice’ to the ‘towards learning communities’ orientation?Module 3 blog activity 3

11 The article quotes Ramsay (2000) ‘A major shift needs to be made in teacher education from the idea of the practicum to the concept of professional experience, workplace learning which is integrated with academic preparation and educational studies.’ This raises the question of the pivotal role previously discussed that the Site Coordinator will need to be able to embrace in order to ensure that these changes occur. article

12 The notion of a learning community is one that is very much part of the culture of Alberton School. In the following video Andrew Plastow talks about his beliefs and how they influence practice at Alberton in the education of Preservice Teachers. Thinking back to the 3 orientations from the article discussed earlier use the Module 3 forum to describe what is it that Andrew says that suggests that Preservice Teachers in his school would view it as a learning community? If Andrew was your Site Coordinator how would you see him contributing to your growth as a Mentor Teacher?Module 3 forum video (Click on the video to view)

13 conclusion In conclusion it has been the intention of this module to describe and acknowledge the role of the Site Coordinator in its many facets. There is no doubt that to perform the job well a Site Coordinator requires highly developed skill and knowledge and a commitment to high quality graduates in order to assist to develop and sustain the profession into the future. Perhaps the most important aspect of the role is the ability to be able to provide the vision for the future of the profession through their attitude and commitment to Preservice Teacher education, so that it becomes integral with the school’s culture, exemplified in the commitment of the Mentor Teachers and school community.

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