Elementary Summer Summit Provides Professional Development Opportunity

Jul 10, 2023 at 01:39 pm by WGNS News


RUTHERFORD COUNTY, TN - Rutherford County Schools kickstarted its professional development opportunities for the 2023-24 school year with this year’s Elementary Summer Summit. The summit is a voluntary professional development opportunity for teachers that offers over a hundred sessions ranging from classroom management to content focused development.  

During the summit, teachers and principals can attend sessions pertaining to their individual curriculum or professional development. Teachers are also actively earning professional development credits. This year’s two-day elementary summit was hosted at Rockvale High School and started today.


“I was so impressed with the opportunities for professional growth,” said Judy Goodwin, principal at Barfield Elementary School. “Our central office staff is to be applauded for putting together something that would require so much time and detail. I love the specificity. How things are geared for principals, instructional coach, third-grade teachers, etc.”  

The summit is not an all-day slog for teachers. Instead, sessions are tailored to the individual subject or area of development.  

Kortnee Carter, a kindergarten teacher at Plainview Elementary, says this is exactly what makes the Summer Summit so beneficial for teachers.  

“I do the summit every year,” said Carter. “It’s really nice for teachers because we get a choice about what we want to sign up for. I look at my school year and what I want to focus on, then I sign up for whatever I feel I need. It’s great because we get one-on-one with teachers who are like us. We get to learn from our peers and our colleagues.” 

Additionally, teachers earn professional development credits for the year. Across the district, RCS teachers and administrators are always working to reach that next level of educational excellence. 

“It’s important to do PD to learn and grow and to become a better teacher. You reflect on your teaching and just get better every way that you can. I signed up for de-escalation strategies for behavior and did a SONIC board tutorial. Next, I’m going to Kindergarten Skills block which will help us train for small groups,” said Carter.  

Ann Haley is the RCS Elementary Coordinator who spent much of her time painting and creating a welcoming environment for the RCS teachers and administrators attending the summit.  

“We have over 100 different sessions over the next two days. We'll have teachers presenting and central office staff, Kiddom is here presenting, as well as other education professionals. There are a broad range of topics for teachers to get more training on such as classroom management, SPED, and the new math curriculum. It’s all voluntary – and it’s a great opportunity,” said Haley. 

Middle school teachers and administrators will get the same opportunity for professional development beginning Wednesday, July 12, while high school faculty will begin professional development July 17. 

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