red Supported Site California State University, San Marcos: Induction & Mentoring

Successes

  • Created North County Physics Educators (NorCoPE) professional learning community.
  • Hosted spring meeting of Southern California section of American Association of Physics Teachers (SCAAPT).

Challenges

  • Prior to this, there were very limited connections between CSUSM physics and local HS physics teachers. As a result, it was difficult to find and recruit teachers for NorCoPE.

Sustainability

  • The project is building a relationship with local districts and professional development agencies.

Lessons Learned

  • In North County San Diego, there are many districts, but all are members of the North County Professional Development Federation (NCPDF). Obtaining the support of the NCPDF Director was essential in recruiting teachers for NorCoPE. The Director provided advice, helped promote NorCoPE, and lent legitimacy to the effort.
  • The participation of PI Lawler, as a School of Education faculty member, was also helpful in initiating connections to school sites. Importantly, his familiarity with high school settings added authenticity to interactions with teachers.
  • Meetings of NorCoPE are excellent opportunities for physics students to talk with practicing teachers and learn more about careers in teaching.

Activities

  • Project PIs met with NCPDF Director (September 30, 2011; December 15, 2011; April 25, 2012; May 11, 2012).
  • PIs held exploratory meetings with local HS physics teachers (April 11, 2012 at CSUSM).
  • NorCoPE held monthly meetings throughout 2012-13, with 9 local HS physics teachers participating.
  • A NorCoPE web presence was established via a CSUSM-hosted Moodle web site. (Moodle is a Learning Management System (LMS) useful for collaboration and resource sharing.)
  • CSUSM hosted the SCAAPT spring meeting on April 21, 2012, with approximately 70 attendees.