JPS Holds New Teacher Orientation For 2018-19 School Year

New teachers Rachel Frisbee, who will teach math at Washington Middle School, and Trisha Lockwood, who will teach third grade at Fletcher Elementary School get acquainted during JPS’ New Teacher Orientation. Submitted photo

Jamestown Public Schools recently held a new teacher orientation at the district’s administration building. Bret Apthorpe, district superintendent, addressed the new teachers.

“I was reminiscing many years ago that I came to Southwestern as a new teacher and in that class at least three of them are still close friends and one, Craig Acklin, Southwestern technology teacher, is godfather to my daughter, Hannah,” Apthorpe said. “So you are with kindred spirits here going on a journey together. I really encourage you to lean on each other. The one thing I look for in a teacher is, does that teacher have a natural love of children? Because you can’t teach that quality. You can teach pedagogy, you can teach instructional strategies, how to use technology in the classroom, but you can’t teach the natural love of children. And I’m very confident that all of you embody that quality. We are a school district with a huge spectrum of kids. You will get to know them and champion them because that is what children need. You will love Jamestown schools and I look forward to being in your classrooms.”

Whether new to teaching, or just new to JPS, teachers were given the opportunity to become acquainted with the many people, resources and services that are available to support them.

This year’s group of 25 “new” teachers spent three days meeting, and learning, with representatives from the Jamestown Teachers’ Association, staff development office, human resources and information services.

In addition, Victoria Patti from Chautauqua County Department of Mental Hygiene joined the new teachers for learning on Mental Health First Aide.

“The new teacher orientation is the first phase of a multi-faceted Teacher Induction Program focused on supporting the success and professional growth of these teachers,” said Michelle McDowell, chief academic officer. “Throughout the school year, additional opportunities, to include workshops and mentoring, will be provided to assist new teachers in meeting their professional goals, and assuring that Jamestown Public Schools District students have the very best education.”