Sioux Central teacher attends National Ag Educators' Conference in Las Vegas

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Melanie Bloom, ag teacher at Sioux Central High School, Sioux Rapids, attended the 59th annual convention of the National Association of Agriculture Educators (NAAE), December 11-15, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

More than 500 ag ed professionals from all states including teachers, teacher educators and state staff gathered for a national meeting that provided ag educators with preofessional development opportunities to strengthen local educational programs.

Highlights of the meeting included sessions on parternerships between ag educators, agribusiness leaders and local, state and national policy makers. The Iowa delegation included more than 30 educators and supporters from the state.

"Having the opportunity to network with ag educators across the country is just one opportunity that teachers have at the NAAE convention," says NAAE President Lee James of Weir, Miss.

"Teachers attending the convention also get to experience unique professional development opportunities and interact with their professional organization at the national level."

Conference attendees also participated in professional development workshops on current issues related to improving teaching tech

"The NAAE mission is

professionals providing

agricultural education for the global community through visionary leadership,

advocacy and service."

niques and developing trends in agriculture. Over 50 workshops were available on topics including grassroots and advocacy, using technology in the classroom, incorporating core competencies into the ag ed curriculum, writing proposals for competitive grants, teaching in alternative formats and with alternative instructional materials, ag literacy, agriscience and others. The conference also included special award and recognition programs that recognized excellence in ag ed profession and business sessions that allowed state delegates to address organizational issues. Bloom was a part of the NAAE Finance meeting.

The NAAE mission is "professionals providing agricultural education for the global community through visionary leadership, advocacy and service." NAAE has about 8,000 members nationwide. The NAAE office is located in Lexington, Kentucky.

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