' I am entirely certain that twenty years from now we will look back at education as it is practiced in most schools today and wonder how we could have tolerated anything so primitive.' John W Gardner
The add on the service unit website reads “ESU #13 is taking applications for a certified science instructor for the VALTS and NEVA programs, which are housed on the campus of WNCC in Scottsbluff.” Very simple and basic and does not even come close to describing this incredibly unique position! This position is awesome! If you know me you have probably heard me say that I have one of the most fantastic jobs in education. Since this position is in an alternative school in rural Nebraska I think many potential teachers overlook it. Why would anyone want to apply for this position? After seven years teaching for the ESU13 I feel very qualified to answer this.
This position is at VALTS, the Valley Alternative Learning Transitioning School. Our school has a staff of four teachers (one in each core area), a principal, and a secretary. Our 47 students are mostly juniors and seniors and come to our school when they are not successful for a variety of reasons in their home districts. When students complete the program at VALTS they are able to receive their diploma from their home high school. Currently six districts districts participate in the alternative program.
Approximately half of each week is spent teaching students face-to-face at VALTS. All of the classes we teach are based on Nebraska standards in our respective areas. In my opinion, the biggest perk of this position is the freedom we have building our curriculum. We have a tremendous amount of flexibility with what we teach and how we can deliver our instruction. While students cannot take laptops home, each student has their own laptop at school. Both classrooms decked out with an LCD projector, document camera, videoconferencing system, and cameras and mics so we can record lessons if desired.
Approximately half of each day is spent teaching online classes through NEVA which is our online school. Moodle is the LMS we use and the courses are ready to go! For educators who are looking for an exciting adventure this is the perfect balance of both worlds. Teaching online always provides unique challenges and the students in the alternative program are some of the most amazing students you will ever meet. There is nothing routine about this position. Teachers who have only dreamed about having a choice about how and what to teach would be very happy at my school. While we must adhere to the Nebraska standards we are encouraged to think outside the box when planning our lessons. What else could you possibly ask for? Autonomy to create your own classes, access to all of the technology you could ever use, fabulous students, and awesome coworkers could all be yours!
If you are interested in learning more about this position please contact Dr. Jeff West at email@example.com. The physical address is 4215 Avenue I, Scottsbluff, NE 69361.