Homewood Schools values professional learning for faculty and staff. Teachers are provided common planning time during the work day with grade level and subject matter colleagues for collaboration and ongoing learning. This common planning time is often facilitated by the assistant principal for instruction, the technology specialist, or others in the school who provide support for teachers. Teachers help lead the direction of professional learning through the Innovation and Leadership Teams (ILT) at each school and at the district.
New teachers to Homewood are provided several layers of support. After an initial orientation at the school and the central office, all teachers are assigned a one-on-one instructional coach who provides individualized assistance around the needs of that teacher. In addition, each school has a teacher-leader in the school who works specifically to coordinate activities around their needs and to provide leadership for all of the instructional coaches. Homewood’s new teacher coordinators are:
Edgewood Elementary: Lora Haghighi
Hall-Kent Elementary: Lisa Littlejohn
Shades Cahaba Elementary: Jennifer Harden
Homewood Middle School: Leslie Tanner
Homewood High School: Jana Flinkow
Homewood Schools also encourages teachers to pursue National Board Certification, believing that the process of earning that distinction provides them with perhaps the most meaningful professional learning of their career. The Homewood Schools Foundation provides financial support to teachers who are pursuing certification or working toward the renewal of their certificate. In addition, each school has a teacher who serves as a facilitator for those working through that process. The mentor provides direct, individualized support and helps provides direct, individualized support and assists candidates in the ongoing stages of work for teachers within the school or district. Homewood’s national board mentors are: