Wilkes County Schools

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1000 Series - Governing Policies » 1610/7800 Professional Development and Assistance

1610/7800 Professional Development and Assistance

The Wilkes County Board of Education believes a strong relationship exists between the quality of education afforded students and the competency of professional personnel employed by the school district. The Board of Education attaches a high priority to securing the most competent personnel available and, once they are employed, in assisting them in their professional growth and development throughout their careers. The primary purpose of staff development, both for individuals and groups of employees, is to improve the instructional program for all students by assisting teachers and other licensed personnel in improving and gaining even greater competence in their profession.

A. Staff Development

The superintendent and his/her staff will provide ongoing staff development opportunities. Input from employees will be sought in developing district-wide programs. Local school staff development programs will be planned jointly by the principal and staff members.
Professional and staff development shall include all topics required by law or board policy.
The superintendent or his designee will be responsible for the following:
  • Authorizing attendance at conferences, meetings, interschool and extra school visitation
  • Providing travel to and from conferences and meetings when applicable

B. Self-Improvement

All employees are responsible for self-improvement. These employees are encouraged to seek information and training through staff development programs as well as other opportunities in order to meet this responsibility.

C. Plans for Growth and Improvement

Supervisors and principals require employees to enter into plans for professional growth and to improve performance. To be most effective, the plan should set clear expectations and facilitate clear communication between the evaluator and the evaluatee. Licensed employees may enter into plans, including mandatory improvement plans established by state law and individual, monitored and/or directed growth plans established by the State Board of Education, for professional growth and improving performance. A performance improvement plan could involve participation in a staff development program or could encompass a variety of strategies that are related to professional growth or improving performance.  
A plan required by a supervisor/principal may be appealed following the grievance procedure in board policy 1750/7220 if the employee contends that (1) the plan is not likely to improve performance; (2) the supervisor/principal abused his or her discretion in developing the plan; or (3) the plan was not developed in conformance with any mandatory procedures.

D. Payment of Costs

The district will consider paying reasonable costs, within budget limits, for any courses, workshops, seminars, conferences, in-service training sessions, or other sessions which an employee is required to attend by the local administration. The employee must seek prior approval for payments for out-of-district training.
The district will not bear the responsibility of the cost of training taken solely for the purpose of licensure renewal.
Legal References:  Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. 1681 et seq., 34 C.F.R. pt. 106; G.S. 115C-333,-333.1; State Board of Education Policy EVAL-004
Cross References:  Grievance Procedure for Employees (policy 1750/7220)
Adopted:  January 9, 2006
Revised:  April 12, 2021