From Thursday, August 1 to today, Elgin ISD is holding orientation to help teachers who are new to the district become acquainted with Elgin ISD and its instructional processes.
Teachers spend the first day of the New Teacher Orientation with the leadership teams of their campus and start setting up their classrooms. For the second day of the orientation on Friday, teachers will receive a warm “Welcome to Elgin” in partnership with the Elgin Chamber of Commerce. This gives the teachers some history about the city of Elgin as they learn about the students of the district on a bus tour after a lunch provided by the Chamber at Southside Market & Barbeque. During the three remaining days of the orientation, teachers are introduced to instructional documents and processes by district staff.
This is the second year that Elgin ISD has had a New Teacher Orientation. Based on feedback from last year’s attendees, the teachers at the orientation will be given more information about special education services and technology applications. Similar to last year, teachers with less than one year of teaching experience will be assigned a mentor teacher. Master teachers will also be on the elementary and middle school campuses to support new teachers throughout the year.
From last year’s beginning, one purpose of the New Teacher Orientation has been to help retain staff and decrease teacher turnover.
“Elgin ISD experiences teacher turnover similar to other districts across the state,” according to Shannon Luis, Elgin ISD assistant superintendent for academics and school improvement. “What we do know is, based on survey data from our new teachers at the end of the last year, the support they received at (New Teacher Orientation) and from master teachers during the year was invaluable.”
Prior to the implementation of this orientation, new teachers came in two days earlier than returning teachers, whereas this orientation time allows for five extra days for new teachers to become acquainted with the district.