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Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES Thinks “Outside the Box” to Raise Awareness

The Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES, located in Auburn, NY, serves nine component school districts and approximately 12,000 students.  Information around state initiatives is generally shared with administrators and teachers at regional gatherings such as the Curriculum and Staff Development Council, Principal Meetings, and Collaborative Communities.   As is the case in most schools, in our component districts, administrators often wear many hats. It can be difficult for administrators to leave their districts to attend meetings and professional development designed for leaders during the work day.  To address these challenges, the Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES Professional Development Unit developed an alternate format for professional learning to provide support in a flexible manner.

To address these challenges, the Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES Professional Development Unit developed an alternate format for professional learning to provide support in a flexible manner.

The Professional Development Unit at the BOCES felt that it was important to give districts resources that could be used by administrators and teacher leaders in faculty meetings, department meetings, or during staff development days to raise awareness around the Next Generation Learning Standards.  Pamela McHenry, a Professional Learning Coach at the Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES created a “Next Generation One Page Reference Guide” for districts to use to easily access materials and presentations that have been created to raise awareness around the Next Generation ELA and Math Standards.  To support this work, Pamela created a series of video recordings to accompany the presentation materials. Administrators and teachers can choose to watch Pamela’s presentation and be guided through the learning, or they can use the video recording to build their own capacity, and turnkey the presentation.

The Reference Guide explores the Preface, the Introductions, the Practices, The Crosswalks and Glossaries. The second page of the document links to the materials needed to explore the Eight Literacy Briefs, with Dr. Nonie Lesaux’s presentation as a guide to understanding the briefs.

Feedback from our component districts has been positive. Mindy Ervay, Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment in the Weedsport Central School District said, “Pamela’s “Next Generation One Page Reference Guide” gave me the opportunity to provide my teachers with a user friendly document that we can easily reference. The slides and video tutorials allow me to provide staff with “snip-its” of professional development which can be easily embedded into team planning sessions or department meetings.   The best part is that it is all located in one place!”

View the Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES's NYSED Update Video and Reference Guide!

Pamela plans on continuing to add to the Reference Guide and links.  Her next steps are to create a video update to share any new tools that have been shared on the NYSED website.  She also plans to dig into each of the Hallmark Briefs later this year, and update the Reference Guide with additional turnkey resources. 


For more information, contact:

Megan Rohlin

Coordinator of Professional Development, Cayuga Onondaga BOCES

mrohlin@cayboces.org or 315-255-7663

Pamela McHenry

Professional Learning Coach, Cayuga Onondaga BOCES 

pmchenry@cayboces.org or 315-255-7662

The views and opinions expressed in this newsletter are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of the New York State Board of Regents, the New York State Education Department, or its staff.

NYSED does not endorse or promote any products, services, or websites mentioned in these articles.