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Monday, January 25, 2016

MISD Staff Spotlight the Good in Schools and Departments

Ambassador Training spotlights the positivity in public schools.
For the past three years, Mansfield ISD has partnered with Friends of Texas Public Schools to bring the Ambassador Training Academy to staff members from across the district. The program unites campus and departmental employees around the district’s overall mission to foster a community built on mutual support and to cultivate productive, lifelong learners.

Each year, a group of 100 individuals are nominated by district leadership to represent MISD and come together for three energizing and informative professional development sessions. Participants learn how the power of professional unity profoundly impacts the field of public education.

The program explores some of the major issues negatively affecting the perception of Texas public schools, but the majority of the sessions are spent focusing on and celebrating all that is going right in public schools. The overall goal is to change the conversation about public education from the inside out by addressing the attitudes and mindsets of those working in the schools, and helping them to step up as ambassadors for themselves, their classrooms, their campuses, district, and the profession.

MISD ambassadors engage in the interactive sessions.
Ambassadors engage in a variety of activities including a book study, headline-gathering to share strengths and achievements from each campus and department, and the development of an activity or program that promotes comradery and teamwork. Each year, the participants share more than 1,000 "good news" stories from across the district.

"The Ambassador Training Academy was a great opportunity to learn about the wonderful things going on at all the MISD campuses and to see how well we appreciate and encourage each other in the district," said Todd Butler, third grade dual language teacher at Erma Nash Elementary School. "I've always believed that the public school system works well, but I learned things about its effectiveness that surprised even me."

Upon the completion of the program, ambassadors are challenged not only to continue their role as advocates and champions for Texas Public Schools, but also to share what they have learned to empower others with the same type of optimism and hope for the future of education.

"I truly enjoyed the opportunity to be a part of this year’s Ambassador Training Academy," said Beatrice Owens, instructional specialist at Lake Ridge High School. "The atmosphere was electrifying which challenged people to self-motivate. Personally, it was a great time to lift my spirit, and I left each meeting refreshed and ready to cheer on the staff at Lake Ridge." 

The 2015-16 MISD Ambassadors are encouraged to share what they learned to their peers.
This year’s class completed the program on January 13. There are now 300 Mansfield ISD employees who have fulfilled the training requirements to become MISD Ambassadors. Although the training is complete, the role of each ambassador is just beginning.