The mission of Joaquin ISD is to budget adequate time and financial resources to support a comprehensive professional development program as required by Texas Education Codes 11.253 and 21.451. According to the Education Code, professional development training shall include training in technology, conflict resolution, and discipline strategies, and it shall promote learning and collaboration with colleagues. The staff development may include instruction as to what is permissible under the law, including opinions of the U.S. Supreme Court. The state supported school year consists of 187 teacher-contracted days - 175 student instruction days and 9 teacher-contracted days for use as determined locally. Joaquin ISD has a waiver for three additional staff development days in lieu of the required 178 days of instruction.
Joaquin ISD conducts district-wide professional development. Motivational speakers and concurrent sessions addressing district-wide issues are scheduled for several days at the beginning of the year. Faculty has input about topics for the district-wide staff development through a needs assessment conducted through an online survey. Other district days are scheduled either during or at the end of the school year for curriculum alignment and scope and sequence editing utilizing the spring STAAR data.
The remainder of the staff development days is used for campus-based staff development. In accordance with local policy, each campus, through its site-based decision making committee, determines the campus achievement objectives to be addressed during the staff development sessions. A review of campus plans reflects the representative objectives to be addressed: team building, curriculum development, disaggregation of formative STAAR reading results, technology, strategies for improving mathematics and reading achievement, and parental involvement/parental conferences.
In addition to the district and campus days of in-service that are part of the school calendar, each campus principal provides additional significant support to the instructional program and to the professional development of teachers.