Weather Forecast


Column: Collaborative to offer more trainings

District 518

WORTHINGTON -- Nobles County Integration Collaborative will be investing more time and resources into staff and professional development opportunities during the upcoming months. This decision was based on suggestions provided by the Minnesota Department of Education. Some educational opportunities will be provided for educators in NCIC member districts only. Other opportunities will be open to any professionals who live or work in Nobles County. All of the professional development opportunities will address intercultural development and how to apply cultural knowledge and intercultural skills in professional settings.

This summer the Integration Collaborative and Minnesota West are co-sponsoring a training called Culturally Responsive Youth Work Matters. It is a three-day training designed for educators or other professionals who work with young children or teens. The facilitators for this training will be Ann Walter and Josie Landrieu, Extension Educators from the University of Minnesota Youth Works Institute. The class is full with 35 people enrolled, but additional names are being placed on a waiting list. We are considering offering the class again within the next year.

Later this summer, the Integration Collaborative will be collaborating with its member districts to offer two trainings specifically for school personnel. These trainings will be offered on the morning of Tuesday, Aug. 17 at Minnesota West, Worthington campus. The presenters will each present two workshops: one for elementary educators and one for secondary educators.

Dr. Bonnie Davis is the first of the presenters for Aug. 17. Her address is titled, "How to Teach Children Who Don't Look Like You: Culturally Relevant Teaching Strategies," and based on her book by the same title. Using brain-based instructional strategies, Bonnie Davis explores how to create a classroom community that honors every voice. Dr. Davis has 30 years of teaching experience and is the author of numerous books and articles related to culturally proficient education.

The second presenter for Aug. 17 will be Mary Kim Schreck, a retired teacher who now writes and speaks professionally. Her presentation, "You've Got to Reach Them to Teach Them," shares practical and creative strategies to combat boredom and disengagement among students, respond to cultural differences and integrate the whole child into learning experiences. She is the author of "Transformers: Creative Teachers for the 21st Century" and a new book with the same title as her presentation. Information about both presenters for Aug. 17 may be found at

In addition to these summer opportunities, Nobles County Integration Collaborative will look for ways to partner with its member school districts of Adrian, Ellsworth, Fulda, Round Lake-Brewster and Worthington to provide future professional development opportunities.

Sharon Johnson is Nobles County Integration Collaborative Coordinator.