Teacher Professional Development

Teachers are the most important factor in student success.

Research shows that effective teachers are the most important factor contributing to student achievement. Although curricula, reduced class size, district funding, family and community involvement all contribute to school improvement and student achievement, the most influential factor is the teacher. (1)

At the BioTechnology Summer Camp, teachers are introduced to rigorous laboratory curriculum (above provided by Bio-Rad Laboratories), facilitate the learning of small groups of students working in teams using the lab curriculum, and, in real time, see how the blend of industry lectures, field visits, student presentations and reflections of learning–coupled with hands-on experiences–and magnify student learning outcomes.

Bay Area LEEDS teacher professional development efforts offer enrichment opportunities that help educators explore theory and practice in a variety of experiences that blend interaction with professionals in emerging technology fields, as well as lectures, hands-on activities, industry panels, team projects, and field trips. Enrichment also includes exposure to the work readiness competencies industry has identified as key to student success in the workplace. All of the professional development is designed to increase awareness in STEM-related disciplines focused on real people doing real things in the local economy.

Through six weeks over summer, Bay Area LEEDS offers teacher learning labs where new curriculum is delivered while practicing techniques on small cohorts of high school students assigned to each teacher during 40-hour ‘camps.’  Both teachers and students are learning.  Then, throughout the school year, teachers continue career pathway dialogue with colleagues, higher education and industry to reinforce the concepts learned during the summer months. This also helps to develop stronger and more sustainable working relationships which increase opportunities for their students to engage in work-based and project-based learning.

Throughout the year, Bay Area LEEDS provides multiple opportunities for teachers to have enriching conversations with each other about curriculum and classroom instruction; provides industry training to improve teacher expertise; connects teachers to industry partners to strengthen relationships with pathways, schools and students; and supports teachers as they develop and enrich learning opportunities for their students during the school year and beyond.

Over 200 educators are engaged in the high-quality opportunities Bay Area LEEDS provides each year.

(1) Educational Research Newsletter and Webinars