February 2018– Lawrence County EdCamp, an educational conference like no other, will be held at two different locations in Lawrence County on Friday, February 16, 2018.
The structure of the conference is very informal and educator-driven.
All Lawrence County school districts have a professional development day scheduled into their calendars on February 16th. It was decided amongst the superintendents to try an EdCamp instead of canned presentations that may not fit all educators’ needs. The idea was brought to the superintendents by Joe Mancini, Superintendent of the Ellwood City Area School District.
“I brought it up at one of our county superintendent meetings and they were all for it. They see the need for us to start sharing what things each school is doing well and where they need assistance and who better to lead those discussions than the teachers that are on the front lines of it each day,” said Mancini.
The EdCamp conference will be free from corporate vendors and booths, with the focus being solely on conversations about education. Educators will come from all the schools and will range from classroom teachers to administrators. Topics for sessions were gathered through a survey sent to all staff members. Sessions were built from that survey so that topics would cover a wide range of educational discussions. There are no formal presenters or presentations, just educators
sharing successes and ideas on what works in their classrooms on specific issues or ideas they might have. An EdCamp is an “unconference.” An unconference is an ad-hoc gathering born from the desire for people to share and learn in an open environment; and a conversational event featuring discussions, demos and interactions between participants, rather than a group of people listening to a particular speaker.
A committee of educators from each school district and the LCCTC volunteered to meet throughout the school year to help organize the Lawrence County EdCamp. Organized by Joe Mancini, superintendent of Ellwood City, this group had the daunting task to make sure that 800 school teachers, specialists, counselors and others have a great day of learning and sharing.
“I asked each superintendent to send me a teacher that has an open mind and willing to put time into organizing this and they sent me a great group that has bought into the EdCamp philosophy and can see the value in getting teachers together to solve problems specific to their needs.”
The committee is made up of the following members: Matt Skoczylas – Ellwood City, Michele Mrozek – Laurel, Tiffany Vanasco – LCCTC, Linda Mayer – Mohawk, Cindy Welker – Neshannock, Cara Florie – New Castle, Jodi Frank – Shenango, Janelle Cassano – Union, Ali Ciavarino – Wilmington.
The committee has met several times and will meet several more leading up to the day. The committee reached out to area businesses to provide any items for prizes that can be given out throughout the day and have prepared local restaurants for about 800 educators for the lunch breaks at each venue. “The committee has gone above and beyond to make this a great day for area educators.”
Lawrence County sponsors include: McElwain Motors, WesBanco, The Nail and Hair Gallery, Venezie Sporting Goods, McDonalds, Loccisano’s Market, Dr. David Spokane, Blocher Jewelers, Pizza Joe’s, Dairy Queen, Giant Eagle, Starwood Rib & Steakhouse, The Crane Room Grille, Nico Luciano’s, First Choice, Mangino’s Pizzeria, Clark’s Studios, Walmart, Dallas W. Hartman Attorneys, Hugger Mugger Restaurant, Great Wall, Dairy Queen, Pizza Joe’s, Subway, El Canelo, Arby’s, T&M Hardware, Jimmy’s Restaurant, Aaron’s Rent to Own, Shop and Save, Aaron’s, Mrozek Financial, Michael Joseph State Farm Agency, Jimmy’s Hot Dogs, Domino’s Pizza, Classic Heritage Stores, Gunn’s Group Daycare, Ferrante Upholstering, and To and Through Retirement.
The superintendents want to especially thank those local sponsors that know the importance of educating the youth of Lawrence County and their appreciation for the teachers that are so important to the future of this area.
More info, visit – https://sites.google.com/ellwood.k12.pa.us/lcedcamp/home