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TISD staffers win scholarships to cooperative learning program

by Andrew Bell | May 12, 2022 at 10:00 p.m.
Andria Camp, Kaci McKeever (Photos courtesy of TISD)

TEXARKANA, Texas -- Texarkana Independent School District recently announced two staff members have been awarded scholarships to attend the nationally recognized KAGAN Summer Institute this summer in Orlando, Florida.

TISD teacher Andria Camp and instructional coach Kaci McKeever were two of the 14 professionals in the United States to be selected for this program.

Camp received the scholarship to attend the Dynamic Trainer Institute, and McKeever will attend the Instructional Coach Institute. Both participated in TISD's KAGAN pilot and will serve as leaders for district-wide implementation.

KAGAN's foundational training is called cooperative learning, which is a way to organize and structure teachers' classrooms that brings about full student engagement.

TISD started with a pilot team of teachers at every campus to become adept at the cooperative learning process. Camp and McKeever will now be immersed in the program to learn how to train other teachers.

"It really brings about more opportunities for students to work together," said Christy Tidwell, Executive Director of Curriculum & Instruction at TISD. "It lowers discipline and increases student engagement. It's extremely hands-on.

"These two ladies are very heavily involved with it. They are just extremely excited and over the moon that they were chosen for this."

Camp joined the district in August 2020 and teaches first grade at Nash Elementary. McKeever has been a part of the district for 13 years, currently serving as an instructional coach on multiple elementary campuses.

"One of the things we want to do with this is build our ability to train teachers, so we can sustain this as a district ourselves," Tidwell said. "It's just a wonderful opportunity."

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