One of the more impressive aspects of the Global Online Academy is the teacher-training program. Teachers must complete an extensive series of professional development experiences before they can teach a GOA course. From the GOA website:
GOA teachers participate in three, 2-week sessions of online training (with roughly 2-4 hours of work per week), followed by a 4-day residential workshop at Islandwood, a learning center in Bainbridge Island, Washington.
Of course, all of the teachers they hire are already experienced teachers from top flight independent schools, so I am impressed with the high expectations they have.
I wanted to learn a little more about what they do, so I asked Michael Nachbar, the Director of GOA for some more information. The three sessions of online training help to “prepare teachers to begin thinking about what it means to teach and learn in an online environment.” Their goal is for teachers to develop “the most engaging online courses possible.”
The residential workshop then allows teachers to develop their specific course with intensive support from colleagues. As a teacher, it must be nice to have an entire team working to help you develop your course!
After these teachers complete their training, GOA provides ongoing support from their instructional design team. They are working with teachers who are already talented and experienced. By supporting them with this level of professional development, they are demonstrating their deep respect for the profession of teaching.
I have been so impressed with the GOA team. They are committed to excellence, and we are thrilled to be working with them.