Topeka Public Schools utilizes teaching methods created by Kagan Professional Development in each of our classrooms throughout the district, from pre-school through 12th grade. These teaching methods are designed to engage students in the learning process, through everything from the way desks are arranged to the way students respond to a teacher’s questions. The Kagan method is research-based and has proven to be a highly effective way to increase student participation and achievement.
Topeka Public Schools is proud to announce that two of our teachers have been selected to become Kagan trainers. Sara Gering and Lauren Peel, along with just 18 other educators, were selected out of hundreds of applicants from across the nation. The utilization of Kagan Cooperative Learning is the district’s longest-running initiative and we’re thrilled to have not just one, but two of our educators accepted into the coveted program this year.
Sara Gering, a Literacy Coach at Highland Park High School, will become a Kagan School Level Trainer once she completes a week-long training in July. This will prepare her to train fellow HPHS teachers to use the Kagan teaching methods. “While a classroom teacher, Sara used Kagan structures for active engagement flawlessly. Since transitioning to her role as a literacy coach, implementation at HPHS has skyrocketed under her continual support and leadership. Sara is not just a building level leader when it comes to effective instruction, but a district leader as well, being called on frequently to provide professional development on a variety of topics,” Angela said.
Lauren Peel, a Language Arts Teacher at Eisenhower Middle School, will become a Kagan Associate National Trainer and will be qualified to train as many as 200 TPS certified staff members each year. She had applied to become a Kagan School Level Trainer, was accepted into the program, and then received a call inviting her to become an Associate National Trainer. Once Lauren completes her training with Kagan Professional Development, she will be called upon to present Kagan methods to teachers across the country and will help Angela provide this training to TPS staff. “Lauren's passion for helping students and providing effective instruction are evident the first time you meet her,” Angela said of Lauren. “She uses Kagan structures seamlessly throughout every lesson and while she provides professional development for staff district-wide. Lauren provides phenomenal in-building support for her colleagues by coaching them and leading them through learning new Kagan structures.” With the addition of Lauren Peel as an Associate National Trainer, Topeka Public Schools can now proudly say that we employ more Associate National Trainers than any other school district.
Sara and Lauren will continue to serve Topeka Public Schools in their existing roles. They will function as Kagan trainers outside of their duty time with the district.
Congratulations, Sara and Lauren!
For more information about Kagan Structures, visit http://www.kaganonline.com/