Select JCPS teachers get first-of-its-kind training for upcoming - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Select JCPS teachers get first-of-its-kind training for upcoming school year

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Weeks before school starts at JCPS, some are already in class learning crucial lessons.

At Southern High School, Jefferson County Public Schools is hosting its first ever boot camp for teachers who will work in priority schools this fall.

Classrooms are full, hands are raised high in the air, and notes are being taken.

They aren't students in summer school. They are teachers learning a different approach to education at schools where traditional styles may not work.

Alison Moore teaches history at Southern High School, a priority school.

On Thursday, she stood at the front of the classroom, speaking to teachers who will take the helm inside a priority classroom for the first time, sharing what it means to work in this kind of school.

"Knowing what I know now, and being able to share that with them, I think will really help them prepare for what they're getting ready to walk into," Moore said.

The state identifies 18 schools in Jefferson County as priority schools.

"It just means that we've been underperforming," Moore said.

If a school fails to meet state test score requirements or college and career readiness percentages for three years in a row, it will be put on priority status.

To get off the list, schools must pass those same requirements for three years straight.

And the issues don't stop at the end of the school day.

"I wish that someone would have told me about some of the things I would encounter, like the poverty and the situations and circumstances that the kids are coming from," Moore said.

So JCPS is taking crucial steps to prepare 180 teachers for two days before they walk into their classrooms.

"We're trying to give the tools to our teachers, so that when they get started in the new school year, they have everything that they need so that they can be successful in helping kids learn," said Dr. Marco Munoz, the Director of Priority Schools.

"There is a lot of things that you can't quite get unless you're in the classroom. I definitely feel the most help is when you get to talk to someone who is currently in that situation," said Camila Rojas, a future priority school teacher.

"I honestly think these new priority teachers are getting into the best work of their lives, because it's hard, it's frustrating, it's stressful, but it's the most rewarding thing to know that you are making a difference," Moore said.

JCPS teachers report back to school on Aug. 8 and students' first day is Aug. 10.

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