On October 13th and November 1st, ESU 11 provided a time for school crisis teams to meet, discuss, update, and organize current crisis and safety manuals. Experts recommend that this be done on a yearly basis so district materials are current and easily accessible when needed during a crisis situation. These workdays also provided the opportunity for school teams to work collaboratively with other crisis teams in order to produce a more comprehensive and effective product. This workday was requested by the ESU #11 area counselors as a result of the Level II Crisis Team Training that was provided by Dr. John Dudley on October 6th.
On October 25, 2011, ESU #11 hosted the first counselor’s meeting of the year. During this particular meeting, Nebraska Army National Guard Staff Sergeant Clifford Poessnecker presented information regarding the Patriot Academy and GED Plus Programs. ESU #11 Technology Integration Consultant Bob Hays spoke about the upcoming Adobe Acrobat workshop that will be held at ESU #11 in January. Bob also informed the group about the Livescribe Pen. This technology records everything that one hears and writes. A Livescribe pen lets you capture words, diagrams, scribbles, symbols and audio – sync everything. He then discussed how this tool can benefit students. A Livescribe Pen training will be held at ESU #11 on November 8th. Finally, Jeffrey Horner from Minden described the 4 week long UNK Counselor Continuing Credit Program that is available online.
On October 24, 2011, ESU #11 hosted a workshop for teachers of the Fine Arts. This workshop demonstrated how using Bloom’s Taxonomy with the Core Curriculum and the Visual and Performing Arts leads to gains in student achievement. Participants also had time during the course of the day to create and refine their own integrated curriculum units. Mary Duffy, Coordinator of the Fine Arts Education Department at the Nebraska Department of Education, was the facilitator for the day.
On October 6, 2011, ESU #11 provided a Level II update and training on how to handle crisis situations. During the past years there have been a number of deaths in our service unit area, so it was very appropriate that ESU 11 help our school teams be knowledgeable of the proper methods to use when dealing with a crisis and/or grief in the school setting. Dr. John Dudley was the presenter. During the course of the day he shared many experiences, which provided a framework for school teams to develop their own crisis team management skills in addition to analyzing and updating their own current crisis team response team manuals. This particular training allowed school crisis teams to upgrade their crisis response repertoire, develop advanced crisis response skills, learn to manage extraneous crisis situations, develop skills for crisis response stress issues, increase skills in helping school staff to manage crisis situations, and understand varying grief patterns in students and staff.