MACOMB -- The innovative partnership between two Regional Offices of Education to help teachers learn and grow professionally in west-central Illinois now has an experienced educator overseeing the collaboration.
Regional Offices of Education #26 and #33 have hired Julia Burns of Macomb in the new position of Professional Development Coordinator, helping the two regional offices expand and improve their PD Consortium serving eight counties stretching from Galesburg to Macomb.
The two ROEs created the PD Consortium to better coordinate resources and provide more professional learning opportunities for educators in their regions. In her new role, Burns will provide in-service training and staff development opportunities, schedule Administrator Academies, create and execute a detailed Regional Professional Development plan and ensure the regions are informed and understand the latest research on school improvement.
The PD Consortium has a busy schedule of year-round educational improvement opportunities for teachers and administrators. An online calendar is available here: http://roepd.net/.
After graduating from college in Minnesota with a math education degree, Burns taught at middle schools in Texas before returning to Illinois in the mid-1990s. She has taught at Carl Sandburg College and at Macomb Junior and Senior High School, and most recently she has been principal at West Central Middle School in Stronghurst.
She said the move to PD Coordinator is a natural evolution in an education career devoted to helping students reach their potential.
"I view myself as an instructional leader. I moved from a teaching position to principal with the hope that I could influence more students with the practices and initiatives about which I was passionate," Burns said. "As the coordinator for the PD Consortium, I believe that I will have an even broader reach."
ROE26 Regional Superintendent John Meixner said Burns stood out among a group of talented candidates.
"We have been thrilled to see the phenomenal success of our PD Consortium, and we believe Julia has the right combination of skills, experience and vision to help us guide our educators and improve instruction for students in classrooms throughout our regions," Meixner said.
ROE 33 Regional Superintendent Jodi Scott said hiring Burns is an important step for the PD Consortium.
“Julia brings to our office a real passion for education, and she will greatly help us ensure our programs are helping educators lead children to reach their full potential,” Scott said.