Darlington School: Professional development grants awarded to faculty members
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Professional development grants awarded to faculty members

May 10, 2016 | 683 views

Darlington School awarded professional development funds to faculty members following a competitive grant application process. The winners were officially announced last week at the annual Brown Faculty Appreciation Dinner.

Thatcher Faculty Development & Research Fund grants have been presented to Technology Integration Coordinator Rebekah Kinney to provide Apple Vanguard certification for 10 faculty members; Upper School Science Department Chair Owen Kinney and science teacher Chris Babb for a zoology entrepreneurship project; Director of Soccer Academy Operations Kevin Ray for National Soccer Coaches Association of America Advanced Director of Coaching certification; Assistant Athletic Director and head football coach Tommy Atha to visit a major research university and learn more about the use of virtual reality in training athletes; Associate Dean of College Guidance Ivy Brewer to send three college advisers to a regional college admissions conference; Technology Integration Specialist Beth Wardlaw to send up to eight participants to the Georgia Educational Technology Conference; and to ELA-8 Director of Strings Annie Camp for a one-week strings course in France. Established in 2014 by the Thatcher Foundation, these annual awards honor the memory of Samuel E. and Mary W. Thatcher, the parents of John Thatcher (’44). This fund provides five grants of $2,000 each to faculty and staff who wish to pursue professional development directly related to their teaching duties.

Thatcher Master Teacher Fund grants have been presented to Media Arts Director Adrienne Forgette for professional development and training in video editing and filmmaking; ELA-8 English teacher Charlie Beaucham to attend the George MacDonald Society Cambridge Conference in England; Upper School art teacher Kathy O'Mara for visits to various museums, galleries and schools in major U.S. cities; ELA-8 Director of Student Activities and math teacher Chris Eberhart for a reading vacation with a content emphasis on student engagement techniques, leadership development and strategic planning; English teacher Jennifer Sikes to attend War College; Head of Regester House Lauren Peal for CrossFit certification to teach to students; ELA-8 Assistant Director Angela Pieroni to attend the Peabody College at Vanderbilt University; Upper School Counselor and psychology teacher Chris Allen for travel along the East Coast; and to Technology Integration Coordinator Rebekah Kinney and Upper School Science Department Chair Owen Kinney for a trip to the Northeast to enrich teaching and learning. Established in 2014 by the Thatcher Foundation, these annual awards honor the memory of Samuel E. and Mary W. Thatcher, the parents of John Thatcher (’44). This fund provides five grants of $2,000 each to faculty for personal use in travel or other experiences. Not strictly curricular in nature, these experiences nurture the dedicated teacher as a lifelong learner whose personal travel and other activities return them to the classroom refreshed and renewed. 

Wood Faculty Professional Development Endowment Awards have been presented to three teams of faculty this year. First, ELA-8 Teaching and Learning Center Director Laura Hicks and third-grade teacher Steve McConnell will use their funds to align the ELA-8 division's history and writing curriculum. Second, I.T. Director Stefan Eady, Technology Integration Specialist Beth Wardlaw, and ELA-8 science teachers Justin Merriam and Steph Bradshaw will plan and create an ELA-8 MakerSpace in Thatcher Hall. Third, Media Arts Director Adrienne Forgette, Upper School chemistry teacher Julia Dodd, ELA-8 art and Spanish teacher Susan Mann, Director of Communications Tannika Wester, Stefan Eady and Beth Wardlaw will create a video studio for use by students, faculty and staff. Established in 2011 by Carla and Leonard Wood during the Second Century Campaign, the Wood Fellowship seeks to create a culture for professional growth and perpetual improvement in our faculty by funding scholarly activity of an exceptional character. Applicants submit an ambitious and rigorous proposal which must identify the critical steps of planning and execution, and clearly state how this project will benefit both students and faculty.