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Teachers learn new techniques

When parents send their children to school, they sometimes

don’t actually know what the teachers go through to better

enhance their students’ educations.Teachers at W.O. Parmer,

Greenville Elementary School and Robert L. Austin Elementary

School all participated in a demonstration given by Dr.

Katherine Mitchell, director of the Alabama Reading

Initiative.&uot;As part of an on-going literacy demonstration,

Dr. Mitchell has been traveling to elementary schools

demonstrating a new technique used to teach primary grade

students to read,&uot; said Carol Teague, principal of W.O.

Parmer School. &uot;Dr. Mitchell has led the way to bring

Alabama toward becoming one of the first states to develop a

program geared toward providing teachers with new

instructional techniques, based on research that has

examined how children learn.&uot;&uot;Students obtain a higher level

of comprehension and proficiency, said Dr. Mitchell.

&uot;I am

proud of the teachers for their hard work and dedication to

this project.&uot;Mitchell earned her BA degree in psychology

from Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Ga., while minoring in

education. She completed an MA degree at New York University

in educational psychology.Later, Mitchell’s doctoral study

in curriculum and instruction with a specialization in

reading led to a Ph.D. degree.She has been recognized for

her significant accomplishments and contributions to

education in the state of Alabama through numerous awards

and honors, including the CLAS Little Red Schoolhouse

Award.She was most recently named the recipient of the 2000

Truman M. Pierce Leadership award, at the AAESA Conference

held this fall in Orange Beach.Teague said that beginning

last year, Butler County Schools applied for this program.

&uot;Last year our teachers attended two weeks of very intensive

training in sessions conducted in Andalusia,&uot; she said.

&uot;This was a pre-requisite to the demonstrations Dr. Mitchell

is conducting now.&uot;It is a great honor to have been selected

for this program,&uot; Teague said. &uot;Last year we applied as a

literacy demonstration site.&uot;&uot;Our people will be able to

serve as models for this program, utilizing the most

efficient strategies, at a higher level of professionalism,&uot;

said Allin Whittle, assistant school board

superintendent.&uot;Alabama is the first state to have this

program-other states are now modeling programs after this

one,&uot; said Teague.