Solution Tree Assessment Institute Draws 4,000 Educators to Cunard Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia

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Assessment Training hosted by Solution Tree Education Canada and Halifax Regional School Board evokes multiple standing ovations from more than 4,000 excited practitioners.

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The Halifax schools are good to begin with, but their vision is to become Canada's most improved school system as far as measurable student achievement by the end of the 2008-2009 school year.

Solution Tree Education Canada recently partnered with Halifax Regional School Board (HRSB) to host one of the single largest professional development events ever held in Canada. More than 4,000 educators from Nova Scotia attended the Halifax Assessment Institute, a two-day training that focused on how best to use formative and summative assessments to significantly improve student learning. The event was held April 29-30 at Cunard Centre in Halifax.

At a time when all eyes are on educators to be accountable for ensuring high levels of learning for all students, assessment has been identified as one of the most effective tools available for shaping guaranteed, viable curriculum. Renowned experts Drs. Douglas Reeves, Robert Marzano, Thomas Guskey, and Linda Gregg delivered both the latest research and current best practice for practical application of assessment strategies and tactics.

According to Stacey Toth, principal of Mount Edward School, "I personally found the Summit to be a powerfully enriching experience. I was moved by the knowledge, experiences and insights that these renowned speakers had to share. Their presentations were relevant to both teachers and administrators of elementary and secondary levels, speaking to the challenges we all share and the common vision of improving student learning."

Donald "Stubby" McLean of Solution Tree Education Canada described the intent of the event. "The Halifax schools are good to begin with, but their vision is to become Canada's most improved school system as far as measurable student achievement by the end of the 2008-2009 school year." According to McLean, HRSB Superintendent Carole Olsen and HRSB Program Director Geoff Cainen, were "absolutely determined to host an event of the highest quality professional development to help make this vision a reality."

According to Liette Doucet, president of the Halifax City Local and chair of the Halifax Regional Representative Council of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union, "It was obvious that countless hours went into the preparation and organization of the two days. The large scale of the event, caliber of speakers, and professional setup within the room gave attendees a very strong feeling that they were part of something important. The speakers were very charismatic, motivating and knowledgeable, and I'm sure all teachers left with a new outlook on assessment and the motivation to go back and apply many of the concepts and ideas discussed."

At the close of the Institute, Olsen took the stage to say a few final words. Emotion infused her speech as she gazed out over 4,000 members of her staff. McLean stated, "It was a fitting end to this high-caliber, emotionally charged event."

About Solution Tree
Solution Tree is a leading provider of educational strategies and tools that improve staff and student performance. For more than 20 years, Solution Tree resources have helped K-12 teachers and administrators create schools where all children succeed. Solution Tree products and services include national and regional conferences that bring leading-edge theories and best practices to educational professionals; innovative publishing of research-based books, videos, and study guides; and inspired, customized professional development for schools and districts. For more information, visit http://www.solution-tree.com.

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Kelly Rockhill
Solution Tree
800-733-6786 ext 234
kelly.rockhill @ solution-tree.com

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Kelly Rockhill
Solution Tree
800-733-6786 +234
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