ESU LEAP Program Offers Two Free Courses to Local Alumni Teachers This Summer

For the second year in a row, East Stroudsburg University is offering tuition-free courses to local educators to support the development of online instructional delivery. Professional and Secondary Education (PSED) 522: Foundations of Online Learning and Digital Media Technologies (DMT) 510: Online Tools and Strategies for Learner-Centered Instruction are two of the four courses in the ESU PDE-approved Online Teaching Endorsement (OTE) series that will be offered online this summer. The purpose for offering free coursework to local educators is to support our local K12 district partners as they continue to navigate instruction through the pandemic.

Summer 2020 saw the origination of the Local Educators Alumni Program (LEAP) as a way to achieve this goal.  “LEAP was instituted Summer 2020 to help local teachers “leap” into online teaching due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr. Brooke Langan, Acting Dean of the College of Education at ESU. “It was a great way for us to stay connected with our alumni and help teachers adjust to online and hybrid learning methods. It was a great opportunity for teachers to get a jump start on a Master’s degree while learning skills that could immediately be applied in their classrooms.” Students who took the first two courses, offered through the LEAP program, were able to take the remaining courses during the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters if they chose to do so.

Laura Householder, a 12th grade English teacher at East Stroudsburg High School North, started the OTE program during the summer of 2020, taking advantage of the free courses offered. This semester she will complete the PDE requirements. “The courses worked around my full time teaching schedule and offered me opportunities to create lessons that could be immediately implemented in my classes.  The concepts, theories, and design practices elevated my teaching by allowing me to create material directly related to my content and students,” Householder said.  “The ESU classes provided flexibility and independent work, but there was never a time that I felt unsupported or alone.  Feedback and sharing of ideas are what pushed our thinking and daring to new levels.  Each class had a level of contagious enthusiasm and excitement that carried through in our work.”   

This summer ESU will expand its LEAP program by offering 50 slots to local teachers in newly established PET school districts in both classes, PSED 522 and DMET 510 to continue supporting the online teaching needs of K12 educators during these unprecedented times.

For more information about LEAP contact Dr. Langan by calling 570-422-3377 or email blangan1@esu.edu.

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