South Participates in Alabama State Department of Education MEGA Conference
Posted on July 20, 2022 by Amber Day
University of South Alabama College of Education and Professional Studies faculty and staff were invited to present on a variety of topics at this year's Alabama State Department of Education MEGA Conference hosted in Mobile.
The conference is a professional development opportunity for K-12 educators. The conference was held at the Mobile Convention Center between July 11-15. Attendees were able to engage in discussions, attend training sessions, and learn from K-12 education experts.
“MEGA Conference is the largest annual event hosted by the Alabama State Department of Education,” said William Jones from the Alabama State Department of Education Office of School Improvement. “Once a year thousands of Alabama’s educators meet in Mobile to learn, network and collaborate together. MEGA Conference is important because it allows our teachers and leaders to calibrate their work and learn with others from beyond their traditional spaces and groups; gain pertinent knowledge regarding state requirements and promising practices to take back to their schools and districts; and to connect and build relationships with ALSDE staff.”
The following South faculty and staff presented at the conference: Dr. Amy Upton, assistant professor of school counseling; Dr. Stephanie Hulon, director of the University of South Alabama Research and Inservice Center; and Chasity Collier, assistant director of the Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative at the University of South Alabama. The College of Education and Professional Studies also hosted a booth to share information and resources with attendees.
Hulon presented a session titled "Define, Design, Align: Three Simple Steps to Promoting Student Engagement in a Post-COVID Classroom.” She also co-facilitated the session "An Introduction to the Alabama Coaching Framework: Support Teachers, Improve Learning” with Jones from the Alabama State Department of Education.
“The Alabama Coaching Framework was developed by the ALSDE, and it outlines coaching at all levels: state, regional, and local,” Jones said. “While the ALSDE can support the work of coaches at the state and regional level using the framework, calibrating the work of instructional coaches at the local level is a task that requires additional support.
“SARIC’s partnership in sharing the framework with local school districts and training school leaders on the implementation of the framework is vital to the overall success of the coaching initiative. Beyond this, SARIC’s director, Dr. Stephanie Hulon, was instrumental in creating a professional learning series that allows Alabama’s school administrators to earn professional learning units (PLUs) when they participate in a specific training related to the coaching framework. That model is being replicated across the state by several other regional inservice centers.”
Collier co-facilitated a session titled "Improving our Science ACAP Scores” with Dr. Amy Murphy from the Alabama State Department of Education. Upton facilitated a session to discuss key ethical challenges and recent developments addressed in the 2022 American School Counselor Association ethical standards that are being released this summer.