Educators around the state attended the Oregon DATA Project’s Essential Skills training in February—and they didn’t even have to leave their home ESD to participate. For the first time, the project offered a “remote sites” option. The Strand 4 training, “Essential Skills in Reading: Impact on Teaching and Learning” was delivered on Feb. 1-2 to 90 people onsite at Clackamas ESD, with seven sites and about 40 people joining the training remotely. A third day of training for team leaders on Feb. 3 was also available remotely. Facilitators who participated in Strand 4 training last fall helped guide the activity at the remote sites.
Above, DATA Project Training Director Mickey Garrison offers one-on-one coaching to a participant in Lake County.
The training was available via a combination of teleconferencing and WebEx, thanks to the over-and-above efforts of Clackamas ESD’s technology staff, led by Stuart Long. Despite a few minor technical glitches, remote participants were highly complimentary of the process.
“The availability of both V-Tel and WebEx was awesome,” said one participant. “It’s always nice to see people in person but the cost for travel/hotel and time are big factors for doing the training this way,” added another. “Our teachers and administrators genuinely seemed to appreciate the fact that they did not have to travel,” said a third.
All sites reported costs savings, ranging from several hundred to several thousand dollars, and many of the districts noted that they could not have participated any other way. ESDs hosting the remote training were: High Desert, Lake, Lane, Malheur, Southern Oregon, Umatilla-Morrow and Wallowa.
The Oregon DATA Project’s May training, “Essential Skills in Writing: Impact on Teaching and Learning” will also be offered to remote sites from Clackamas ESD.