Dear OFLA colleagues,
On behalf of the Ohio Foreign Language Association board, it is with great enthusiasm that we wish you the very best for a successful 2016-2017 school year.
It is an honor to represent Ohio world language teachers at the different regional and national venues that I attend. One thing I’ve learned quickly: our Ohio world language teachers ROCK! In terms of proficiency and performance-based teaching, we are leading the country. Colleagues from across the United States continue to congratulate and model Ohio teachers thanks to the great work we are doing to make authentic, meaningful, and challenging learning.
As we are settling back into our routines, I would like to share some news/updates from the Ohio Foreign Language Association regarding this year’s programming.
If you are looking for an opportunity to collaborate with other teachers, consider joining a committee. See this http://www.ofla-online.org/index.php/organization/25-committees for the list of our committees. We are also seeking candidates for several elected board positions. If you would like to run for an OFLA office or would like more information, message Beth Hanlon.
Advocacy through program promotion is critically important in our field. Why not support a colleague or neighboring program by honoring them with an OFLA award nomination? Watch for a message from Martha Castañeda regarding OFLA award nominations this fall. We’ll also ask for nominations for the Ohio Teacher of the Year award soon.
Are you looking for first-rate and affordable professional development this year? Come to the 2017 OFLA conference to be held at the Hilton Polaris from March 30-April 1, 2017. OFLA runs one of the largest and most active state world language conferences in the country. Regular registration will cost $70 for members and $30 for student members. When registration opens, think about signing up early to take advance of the early registration discount. The hotel rate will be $136 for single/double.
The conference “works” because of our working members. Thank you to our many colleagues who give back by presenting at the conference. This year, we are piloting a few additions (new shorter sessions and round-table discussions). We will put out a call for session and workshop proposals very soon. Look for more information in that forthcoming email.
If you are interested in attending the conference, get in your professional leave request forms ASAP to your administrators. Many districts have limited funding and consequently, it is better to ask early. New teachers and beginning teachers can also apply for scholarship money to help with the cost of the conference. More information regarding scholarships will be coming out this fall as well.
Beyond the conference, OFLA continues to service its members in a variety of ways. Just to name a few:
•- the list-serv (Be an early adopter for our new Google Group list-serv)
•- regional professional development & workshops
•- the CSCTFL Extension Workshop
•- publication of our quarterly OFLA newsletter The Cardinal
•- advocacy for elementary world language learning with Camp OFLA
•- advocacy at national level for world language learning through lobbying and participation with JNCL-NCLIS in Washington, D.C.
•- upcoming webinars on the Core Practices of world language teaching
Back in the spring, we solicited your feedback via the OFLA Membership survey. Thank you to the two hundred people who responded. Based on the survey, we understand that the OFLA members are asking for a few key things: help with teaching in the target language, developing IPA’s and assessments, and finding and using authentic resources in your classroom. Last month, the OFLA board met for the first time this school year and we began working to address these areas of interest.
To close, because we are a working organization, we do welcome your feedback. Let me know how OFLA can serve you.
I hope you have a great school year!
President, Ohio Foreign Language Association