My Idea for a Different Summer PD Experience

As you probably know, I’m hosting the Practical Ed Tech Virtual Summer Camp again this year. From 2013 through 2019 I held it as an in-person event here in Maine. The kind of long-range planning that it takes to host an in-person event just wasn’t possible this year because of all of the variables related to COVID-19. For example, I typically have to reserve meeting space with a $2500 deposit in late January for a July event. As I looked at COVID-19 cases in Maine and beyond I couldn’t make that gamble back in January. That said, it’s now late May, COVID-19 cases are down, vaccination rates are up, and Maine has eased travel restrictions. That brought me to an idea for a very small, new format, in-person professional development experience. 

At this point it’s just an idea!

I need to emphasize that at this point it’s just an idea. I’m trying to gauge interest and gather feedback. 

Here’s the idea…

I’m looking for about ten teachers, principals, or instructional coaches who are interested in coming together for three things. Those things are learning new together, sharing  with/ teaching each other, and getting outside for some fun in the sun. We’d spend part of day learning and sharing then spend part of the day doing small group activities like biking, hiking, or paddling. In my mind, the ideal length is three days. 

Limiting factors…

The obvious limiting factor is the status of COVID-19 cases, CDC guidelines, and the government of Maine’s guidelines related to COVID-19. Those are all very fluid factors which could mean that at any given moment the state could put in place new travel restrictions or other restricts that stop this idea in its tracks. For that reason, I wouldn’t want people to come from beyond comfortable driving distance. 

Are you vaccinated? I am, as is my family. That said, I still plan to wear a mask indoors and wherever social distancing isn’t possible for quite a while. 

Cost and dates: as this is a new approach I’m only planning to cover costs. I have leads on two excellent facilities for small meeting spaces during the week in late July and early August. Both are in Bethel, Maine. 

Are you interested?

Again, I must emphasize that this is just an idea at this point. If you’re interested in more information about this idea, please fill out the short form on this page. Or send me an email at richard (at) byrne.media with a subject line of Summer PD Idea. I’d love to hear your thoughts!