Professional Development

Ursuline’s faculty and staff go above and beyond to master their craft.

The Academy's professional learning framework encourages teachers to grow in five key areas: leadership, pedagogy, technology, mission and heritage, and subject knowledge.

Working in a variety of collaborative learning groups, teachers explore different approaches to assessment and strategies for empowering students to succeed. In peer-led research groups, faculty members share teaching strategies for authentic engagement and multicultural classrooms.

Highlights from the current school year include:

  • Fifteen teachers took Untangled: Educating Adolescent Girls, an online course offered through the Academy's One Schoolhouse partnership. Untangled author Lisa Damour, director of Laurel School’s Center for Research on Girls, presented her best-selling book which reveals developmental transitions and advice on how to engage girls in smart, constructive ways.
    Other online courses for Ursuline faculty included curriculum on Personalized Learning and Blended Learning.
  • Eight faculty members are shadowing six students during a full A and B day schedule as part of the Student Shadow Program. The voluntary program gives teachers insight into student experiences.
  • Notable peer-led workshop panels: Project-Based Learning, Digital Portfolios, Formative Assessment Strategies, Standards-Based Grading, Schemas (Mind Maps), Emotional Wellness, Embody Love, Supporting Freshmen Roundtable, Managing Parent/Student Discussions, Running a Cohesive Advisory.
  • Seven teachers became certified in FIERCE conversations. The conversation model encourages honest, transparent language. They went on to train the faculty during a two-day workshop.

Ursuline teachers also pursue advanced degrees and certifications and participate in webinars, local lectures, and conferences including:

People of Color Conference, Educational Theatre Association, Embody Love Workshop, Dallas Ministry Conference, ISAS Conference, Momentous Institute, TFLA Conference, Western History Association, Central Province Ursuline Schools, Summer Programs and Auxiliary Revenue, America Council on Teaching Foreign Language Conference, National Council of Teaching English, American Historical Association Conference, Teaching Mindset with Jo Boaler, Mental Health America’s Adolescent Symposium, National Art Education Association, Learning and the Brain, Foundations in Art and Theory, National Council of Teachers of Math, National Chinese Language Conference, National Catholic Educator’s Association, Harkness Method Institute, Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages.

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Ongoing Development

Ursuline educators seek to develop themselves by self-reflection, interaction with colleagues, professional development opportunities, and subject based research by:

  • Displaying a disposition of curiosity and life-long learning for and with the students
  • Modeling up-to-date pedagogy

And if, according to times and circumstances, the need arises to make new rules or do something differently, do it prudently and with good advice.
— St. Angela’s Last Legacy

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