Professor — Leadership, Middle & Secondary Education
MOST RECENT/NOTABLE PUBLISHED WORK
Book Bertrand, L. A. (2006). The impact of the Texas state accountability system on classroom practices: A case study of a selected elementary school. Lewiston, NY: Mellon Press.
WHAT AREA DO YOU TEACH?
Master's and Specialist courses in Educational Leadership
Ed. D. Educational Leadership, Stephen F. Austin State University
Nacogdoches, Texas 75962
Dissertation Topic: The Impact of the Texas State Accountability System on Classroom Practices: A Case Study of a Selected Elementary School
Certification Mid-Management, University of Texas at Tyler
of Advanced Study Tyler, Texas 75701
M. Ed. Special Education, University of Texas at Tyler
Tyler, Texas 75701
B. S. Elementary Education, Southeast Missouri State University
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701
YOUR PHILOSOPHY OF TEACHING:
In order to promote a sense of community and collaboration, I design each class to address active student engagement where my philosophy centers on the constructivist approach to learning. I provide many opportunities for students to dialogue and to share experiences and build knowledge based on their conversations. An example of a class activity may include an introduction of a topic using a variety of resources, followed by a response to a focus question posed in a forum with classmates contributing to the discussion. Knowledge is constructed throughout the course often culminating in student presentations. These presentations also provide stimulus for further class dialogue and the construction of knowledge.
I also center my work around a project based learning philosophy. As a former school administrator, I also strive to align all topics of study in an authentic manner and to the professional leadership standards. Coursework reflects real-word experiences which aids in the preparation of students to assume leadership positions in their profession.
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO TEACH?
My decision to teach was evident when I entered Southeast as a Freshman. I declared elementary education as my major and truly enjoyed my preparation experience. From there I became interested in Special Education and later Educational Leadership. Teaching has always been a passion for me, as a classroom teacher, special education teacher, and later a building level leader.
I continue to have a passion to teach at the university level, hopefully passing down lessons I learned in the education field to others preparing to lead schools and school improvement efforts.
I come from a family of educators, so this decision to teach was an easy one for me. I very much have enjoyed the multiple years of teaching in public schools as well as teaching educational leadership courses at Southeast.
After graduating from Southeast with an Elementary Education degree, I began teaching second grade. Due to my interest in special education, I then moved to a self-contained special education class here in Southeast Missouri.
My next venture was in the state of Texas, where I taught in a special education resource setting, a content mastery setting, and as a first grade teacher. Moving into more of an administrative role, I served as an educational diagnostician before becoming principal of a large 700 student population elementary building. I finished my career in pubic education as a special populations coordinator.
Entering the higher education setting and coming full circle back to the university where I was prepared to teach, I have now finished my 15th year of teaching educational leadership courses. Currently I teach the Internship experiences in addition to courses focusing on special education, school operations, and school equity.
My professional highlight has been the opportunity to return to Southeast to teach where I once was a student.
Presented the College of Education Outstanding Teaching Award
Presented the College of Education Outstanding Scholarship Award
Presented the College of Education Outstanding Service Award
Nominated for the College of Education PRIDE Award
Honored for service as President of the Old Town Cape organization
ORGANIZATION WITH WHICH YOU ARE INVOLVED
International Council of Professors of Educational Leadership
National and State Elementary Association of Elementary Principals
Association of Supervisors and Curriculum Directors
Missouri Principals of Educational Administration
BEST ADVICE FOR STUDENTS
Set goals and strive to meet your goals daily. Work in a field you enjoy and are passionate about making a difference.