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Northern Lights Public Schools prides itself on hiring highly qualified staff who are committed to student learning and development. We believe that providing staff with the support and professional development they need to enhance their skills and build leadership capacity has a direct impact on the quality of instruction in our classrooms and the success our students are able to achieve. Here are a few of the initiatives we have underway to support our staff and enhance student learning:
Teacher Induction Program
All new teachers take part in Northern Lights’ Teacher Induction Program which starts with a one-day orientation at the beginning of the school year and is complemented by ongoing one-on-one observations and discussions with school-assigned mentors. This is supplemented by half-day professional development workshops provided throughout the school year by the Division’s Directors of Learning.
System Focus Day
Once a year, all of the Division’s staff gather in one location to meet, share and learn from each other as well as world-renowned keynote speakers.
Professional Improvement Assistance
Staff upgrading their skills and qualifications can apply for funding to cover some of the associated costs through our Professional Improvement Assistance program. This is available for certified and non-certified staff.
The Central Office Leadership Team (COLT) is taking part in the third year of a three-year project with the University of Lethbridge. Two teams, along with university professors, visit schools on a monthly cycle. These connections allow for targeted professional conversations with the goal of improving student learning through enhanced teacher practice.
Northern Lights offers a two-year Leadership Academy program for leadership development and enhancement in administration, curriculum and instructional areas. The program has been tentatively accepted as credit with the University of Alberta.
The Learning Network
Northern Lights is part of The Learning Network, which provides professional development and training opportunities for administrators, teachers, support staff and parents. Numerous opportunities are provided throughout the year.
Northern Lights is partnering with the University of Alberta to offer a Masters of Education program for teachers and educational leaders. For the past two summers, the local cohort (above) took part in a three-week summer residency in Bonnyville, where students explored school improvement and educational leadership.
Healthy Living Program
As a division, we place a high priority on staying healthy - in mind, body and spirit. The Division provides funding for staff for healthy activities throughout the year - things like staff sports tournaments or healthy lunch programs. Schools promote healthy living by offering healthy food choices, sharing health information and providing opportunities for staff to take part in activities like yoga, walking and running.
Employee and Family Assistance Program
The Employee and Family Assistance Program is a confidential service designed to assist staff members and their dependants that are experiencing job-related and personal problems that affect work performance, family life and personal well-being.
Employee Computer Purchase Plan
This program allows staff to purchase a computer or tablet at the beginning of the school year and repay the full cost of the computer over the course of the school year.
Check out our 2016-2017 Division Profile brochure for more information on Northern Lights and our schools.