County residents have unclaimed property

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 30, 2004

&uot;We teach careers. We are not just cooking and sewing anymore.&uot;

That’s the way Shelby County High School’s Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher Frances Schofield describes her department at SCHS now that it boast’s the state’s first model high school teaching program.

The $50,000 state grant-funded program is designed for high school students who want to become teachers.

Dr. Nanaline Burgess, education administrator for the state Department of Education, was among those on hand Monday afternoon for a ribbon cutting and opening ceremony at SCHS for its new &uot;Teach Alabama&uot; Model Classroom.

Schofield said at a conference held about a year and a half ago, she learned that one of the new curriculums in her department would be education.

She said that along with Phyllis French, career and technical program area specialist for Shelby County Schools, and Linda Major, wife of Shelby County School Superintendent Evan Major, she wrote a grant for an educational program for high school students who want to become teachers.

She said the grant was funded by the state to the tune of $50,000.

That money she said was used to purchase state-of-the-art equipment the student would some day use as teachers.

In the first year of the four-year program, Schofield said, students would study Education Careers. Each year after, she said, students would build upon the previous year from from ninth through the 12th grade learning information they will need to become teachers.

In addition to the model classroom, where the future teachers will work with Alpha Smarts (key pads that can be downloaded into computers), computers, laptops, laminating machines, letter cutting machines for bulletin boards and LCD projectors, Schofield said the students will have mentor teachers at area elementary schools such as Elvin Hill and Wilsonville.

She said students will work with their mentor teachers in the classroom for one hour a ten minute class periods once or twice a week, observing teachers, doing bulletin boards, and becoming oriented to the teaching profession.

She said the students would also learn how to create lesson plans and games for lessons, as well as classroom management. Schofield said the students would also study childhood development, &uot;the first thing you need to know before becoming a teacher.&uot;

The four-year program includes Teaching Careers (teaching techniques); Teaching (legal aspects, curriculum development, lesson planning); Advance Teaching (assessment, making tests, learning environment and classroom management); and finally Internships at local schools.

Consumer and Family Sciences still involves cooking, according to Schofield, but she said it more in the form of culinary arts… creating foods… aimed more at a career in the field.

Schofield said the model classroom would be an ongoing program at SCHS. And, she said &uot;Hopefully we are going to home grow our own teachers.&uot;

Burgess said of the model classroom opened at SCHS, &uot;We think we have a show place to show best practices in.&uot;

According to Schofield, other programs in her department which teach family and consumer resource management are also aimed at preparing students for careers either straight out of high school or following graduation from college.

In addition to the opening of the model classroom, Schofield also presented a plaque on Monday in honor of the late Johnny Lowe for his support of the SCHS Family and Consumer Sciences Department