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Nexus
The Teacher Professional Development Group is available to work with your school or district staff during school year professional development days. We are beginning to talk with schools and districts about summer 2015 contracts. Summer institute weeks fill up quickly. For more information, please contact us at profdev@smm.org.


Nexus

teachers with an experimentNexus is an initiative for district-based leaders, curriculum coordinators, professional developers, and others with responsibility for K–12 STEM education. Nexus is dedicated to addressing racial, class, disability, and gender-based achievement disparities in STEM education in Minnesota. As a community of district STEM leaders committed to the well-being and future of all our young people and to the economic and social health of our communities, the Nexus community works together to bring about cultural change and transformation in our educational institutions. We hope that through our effort, we will ultimately open doors that help our children grow up strong in a world full of possibility and opportunity. We invite those working with teachers on STEM teaching and learning including curriculum coordinators, classroom coaches, professional learning community leaders, principals, curriculum committee chairs, magnet coordinators, and others to join us for this work.

Goals for Nexus:

  • Developing a Distributed Leadership Community: Nexus seeks to increase and deepen the distribution of relevant expertise and resources within schools and districts to improve instruction across all classrooms. Nexus provides professional development designed to support teams of leaders in engaging those around them to build their own distributed leadership communities in which every member contributes to the collective responsibility for the achievement of each and every STEM learner.
  • Creating a Foundation for STEM Equity: STEM investigations, discussions, and readings are designed around the PAGE Framework for Access and Equity in STEM Education. Developed by the Science House team with funding from the National Science Foundation, Framework-based PD addresses access and beliefs; pedagogy and curriculum; the nature and culture of STEM; the role of student, teacher, and community identity; and systems-change.
  • Effecting Change: Our expectation is that district teams will work to adapt, refine, and implement Framework-based strategies and professional development resources with teachers, principals, and central staff in ways that are highly context-specific, influence policy and teaching practice, and ultimately promote the achievement of each and every student in STEM.

Nexus is a fee–based program and the application process is competitive. Each district (or consortium of small districts) applying needs to select a team of individuals (based on district size) with collective responsibility for STEM efforts within their district(s).

2014-2015 Nexus Dates

  • Colloquium (2 full days; all participants): October 29-30, 2014
  • Seminar 1 (1 full day; 24 participants each): December 10 or 11, 2014
  • Seminar 2 (1 full day; 24 participants each): February 4 or 5, 2015
  • Seminar 3 (1 full day; 24 participants each): March 4 or 5, 2015
  • Seminar 4 (1 full day; 24 participants each): April 8 or 9, 2015
  • Symposium (1 full day; all participants): May 20, 2015

We currently have teams from South Saint Paul Public Schools, Fridley Public Schools, Mounds View Public Schools, Owatonna Public Schools, Elk River Area Schools, Robbinsdale Area Schools, Saint Paul Federation of Teachers, Mahtomedi Public Schools, Saint Anthony-New Brighton ISD, Lakeville Area Public Schools, Rosemount—Apple Valley—Eagan ISD, and Bloomington Public Schools.

Visit our Professional Development Philosophy & Mission page to learn more about our approaches.

Look for 2015-2016 Nexus applications in late winter of 2015.