Meeting the Needs of Program Directors

meeting the needs of program directors first literacy blogAt First Literacy, we believe that all educators deserve access to high quality professional development. That’s why we offer high quality, evidence-based professional development workshops as a chance for educators to come together, share ideas, and sharpen their skills. While the majority of First Literacy Professional Development Workshops focus on improving teaching and supporting teachers in Adult Basic Education (ABE) programs, we know that ABE program directors have needs, too.

Like teachers, administrators can benefit from professional development and support to prevent isolation, renew energy, and stay informed of best practices in the ABE field. Directors often rise to their administrative positions from the classroom as a result of their temperament for leadership and their competence in carrying out programmatic responsibilities. Few directors have formal management training in staff supervision, staff and program evaluation, strategic planning, fundraising, branding, and creating a social media presence. These skills are mostly learned on the job.

Strengthening Leadership and Supervision Skills

One of our past professional development workshops focused on Tools for Managing an Effective and Supportive ABE/ESOL Program, facilitated by Christine Tibor. The workshop was an opportunity for ABE directors and coordinators to come together and learn strategies intended to strengthen their leadership and supervision skills within the specific context of the Adult Basic Education arena. While a deep dive into this topic is key to managing an effective program, we wanted to offer some key take-aways.

    1. Get In The Classroom
      Gaining experience as an ABE/ESOL teacher will help you begin to understand the kind of support your teachers need from you.
    2. Take A Step Back
      Set aside your to-do list and take a moment to think about what your philosophy is. This is essential to set expectations for your staff and will help you determine your leadership style.
    3. Be Proactive
      Think about what policies you need to ensure a smoothly running program. Examine areas for both personal and programmatic improvement.

For a deep dive into the resources used in this workshop, visit our Resources for Educators page.

March 12, 2018

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