Spotlights
Future Educators gather for 8th annual Leadership Conference
4/7/10

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The students who gathered on the campus of the College of Notre Dame of Maryland on March 19 were a little younger than usual. In fact, they were 250 Baltimore County Public Schools students and their advisors who had assembled for the 8th annual Leadership Conference of the Future Educators Association.

At their opening ceremony, the students heard welcoming remarks from Maryland State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Nancy S. Grasmick; Notre Dame’s Vice President for Enrollment Management Heidi Lippmeier Fletcher; BCPS Chief of Staff Rita Fromm; and Baltimore County Board of Education Student Member Zoe Camp.

The morning’s keynote speaker was Cecily Anderson, BCPS

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Teacher of the Year and English department chair at Catonsville Middle School. Joyce Gray, FEA advisor at Eastern Technical High School, served as mistress of ceremonies for the event.

Representing Baltimore County Superintendent Dr. Joe A. Hairston, Fromm spoke to the participating students about the many important roles teachers play in shaping children and thereby shaping the future.

“Teachers and schools help students have a larger worldview and a better understanding of where they fit in the world and their potential impact on the world,” Fromm explained. “Teachers and schools, especially public schools, reinforce our shared humanity by bringing together people of diverse racial, economic, ethnic, and religious backgrounds. The diversity of our schools adds to the richness of the educational experience.”

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She added that while most teachers have areas of expertise, “whatever their subject areas, teachers also offer vital lessons on how to learn, how to think critically, how to work in teams, how to work independently, and how to be more confident. …Teachers help students discover strengths and talents and assist them in overcoming challenges.”

In addition to hearing from guest speakers, students toured the Notre Dame campus and participated in workshops on topics such as service learning, success as a new teacher, teaching science, engaged learning, effective reading, storytelling to preschoolers, Parent Support Services, bullying, diversity, and making and using videos in the classroom.

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The Future Educators Association (formerly Future Educators of America) provides middle and high school students with opportunities to explore teaching as a career option. Phi Delta Kappa coordinates FEA activities nationally. Dr. Lisa Williams, director of the Office of Equity and Assurance, coordinates FEA activities for BCPS.

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Story by Diana L. Spencer, communications officer, Office of Communications. Photos courtesy of the Office of Equity and Assurance.
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