OSSU Central Office coordinates and implements SU-wide professional development for OSSU educators to support teaching excellence and improve student learning. Supported programs include teacher mentoring, coaching, workshops, in-service programs, and working with universities offering credit-bearing courses. We are committed to supporting and retaining high quality educators and staff within OSSU.
Professional Learning Opportunities
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OSSU has adopted a research-based mentoring program. Instead of resource-intensive, one-to-one mentoring, which relies on matching new teachers with veterans in similar roles, the program establishes a mentoring team in each building. All new teachers have access to the entire team, which allows for multiple perspectives, team building and a better ability to harness the talents and innovation of the new teachers.
Another key difference between OSSU’s mentoring program and more “traditional” mentoring programs is that it focuses attention on helping new teachers acquire resources, both in the building and outside. This way, instead of indoctrinating newer teachers into a building’s established way of doing things, the school achieves a balance between helping new teachers learn about a new town, school and system and using the new teachers’ energy, enthusiasm and expertise to move the school forward.
In addition to improved service to buildings, students and teachers, OSSU’s new mentoring program has realized a cost savings of about 40% over the prior system. It is more effective and more efficient.