Educating. Empowering. Enriching.: Sumter School District to host 2nd teacher conference in June

BY BRUCE MILLS
bruce@theitem.com
Posted 5/17/19

Summertime is coming fast for Sumter School District teachers, but the district wants to send them off in style by hosting its second-annual E3 professional development conference.

District Executive Director of Instruction Jade McLeod spoke …

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Educating. Empowering. Enriching.: Sumter School District to host 2nd teacher conference in June

Posted

Summertime is coming fast for Sumter School District teachers, but the district wants to send them off in style by hosting its second-annual E3 professional development conference.

District Executive Director of Instruction Jade McLeod spoke recently on the upcoming conference, which will be June 11-13 in downtown Sumter and Crestwood High School, 2000 Oswego Highway.

Similar to the inaugural event last year, the district expects about 500 teachers and administrators to attend the three-day conference.

Interim Superintendent Debbie Hamm, who is about to finish her second and final year in the role before a new permanent superintendent begins over the summer, has referred to last year's inaugural conference as a "transformative event" that helped with teacher retention and recruitment.

"The essential thing for us is to have great teachers in our classrooms," Hamm said, "and we received great comments back from last year's conference. They said, across the board, it was one of the best professional learning opportunities that they have ever had, and they felt so appreciated."The E3 name comes from three core values of the district: educate, empower and enrich. The conference slogan is "Educate your mind, Empower your learning and Enrich your future," McLeod said.

Professional learning topics will include focuses on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math, Google and technology, cultural diversity and teacher leadership, she said.

The conference will kick off at the Sumter Opera House on June 11 at 9:30 a.m., and sessions during the three days will be at Crestwood.

The district has secured three keynote speakers for E3, including Ken Shelton of EdTechTeam in Los Angeles, Sara Delano Moore of Origo Education in St. Louis and motivational speaker Randy Pierce of 2020 Vision Quest in Nashua, New Hampshire. Numerous out-of-town, state-level presenters will also hold sessions in addition to some district personnel, she said.

A highlight of the event will be a downtown block party for conference attendees on June 12 from 5 to 9 p.m. at La Piazza featuring the band Big Swing, McLeod said.

Presenting sponsors for E3 this year will be the Thompson Family of Companies - which includes Thompson Construction Group, Thompson Industrial Services and Thompson Turner Construction - the Sumter Economic Development Board and the Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative.