New Career, Technical Education Teachers at MSU for Special Summer Training

“Having a firm foundation of training is so important in the beginning. We then help them build on that foundation with continued support throughout the school year, so they can have a positive impact on student learning as new teachers and throughout their teaching career.”
- LeAnne Long

For immediate release: July 13, 2017
Contact: Emile Creel

New Teacher Induction 2017 Graduation Ceremony

STARKVILLE, Miss. — More than 50 public career and technical education teachers from around the state are at Mississippi State for a New Teacher Induction training program.

The two-week program is part of an alternate-route teacher-certification pathway in career and technical education administered by the university’s Research and Curriculum Unit. In addition to classroom management and assessment, NTI participants are learning about instructional planning and strategies through activities both on and off campus. They are spending this week on campus and will continue training through July 21 at regional locations throughout the state.

Many new high school CTE teachers come from industry and therefore do not have a traditional teaching license. The NTI program helps prepare industry experts to translate their advanced skills to the high school classroom.

The latest cohort is among more than 400 new Mississippi CTE teachers who have taken advantage of the program over the past five years, said Lois Kappler. Because many come from industrial careers, the training has been designed to help them translate their advanced workplace skills to classroom settings, RCU’s project manager explained.

“We also offer training throughout the new teacher’s first year; it’s an added level of support,” she said.

Members of the Mississippi Department of Education-affiliated unit’s professional learning team, Kappler and Leanne Long, RCU assistant research professor, are serving as training coordinators.

“Training before the school year is so important because teachers need to know what to expect when they enter the classroom,” Long emphasized. The program additionally features presentations by RCU staff colleagues and Mississippi Department of Education representatives, along with a number of current classroom teachers and other authorities, she added.

To make certain participants have the latest information on innovative pedagogical methods, Kappler said the MSU team “constantly evaluates the NTI curriculum to continue to capture best practice.”

Throughout the coming school year, continuing education training will incorporate curriculum-specific mentor teachers and instructional coaches, along with three regional sessions.

Long said the mentors are current school instructors available to guide their new colleagues through any unexpected classroom situations that might arise. RCU or MDE staff members will fill the roles of instructional coaches.

“All the coaches have classroom experience, as well as the knowledge to recommend resources and contacts to the new teachers,” Long said.

After the 2017-18 school year has ended, the current group will return to MSU in the spring for final training, a recap of the year’s experiences and a graduation ceremony.

“Having a firm foundation of training is so important in the beginning,” Long said. “We then help them build on that foundation with continued support throughout the school year, so they can have a positive impact on student learning as new teachers and throughout their teaching career.”

Established in 1965, the RCU has a mission to improve the lives of Mississippians through education by developing curricula and assessments, providing training and conducting research for K-12 schools. For additional information, visit

The 2017 summer NTI class at MSU includes (by hometown):

  • ABERDEEN – April Holton of Monroe County School District.
  • ACKERMAN – Kellie Cauthen and Roy Loggins of Choctaw County School District.
  • BATESVILLE – Robert Winkler of South Panola Schools.
  • BILOXI – Chelsea DeSalvo of Biloxi Public Schools.
  • BRUCE – Rebecca King and Kimberly Moss of Calhoun County School District.
  • CALHOUN CITY – Chrystel Casey and Turner Moore of Calhoun County School District.
  • CANTON – Doris Bright and Walter Peeples of Canton Public Schools.
  • CARSON – Katrina Smith-Sims of Jefferson Davis County School District.
  • CHOCTAW – Vickie Thorne of Choctaw Tribal Schools.
  • COLLINS – Megan White and Tammy Womack of Covington County School District.
  • COLUMBUS – James Rush of Columbus Municipal Schools.
  • CRYSTAL SPRINGS – Shalonda Brinkley of Copiah County School District.
  • ELLISVILLE – Haley James of Jones County School District.
  • FOREST – Haley Blissett of Forest Municipal School District and Mika Beatty, Amber Creel and Justin Usry of Scott County School District.
  • GREENVILLE – Kimyetta Hall-Brown of Western Line School District.
  • GREENWOOD – Karmen Johnson of Leflore County School District and Jeffrey Vassel of Greenwood Public School District.
  • HATTIESBURG – Amy Varnado of Forrest County School District.
  • HOLLY SPRINGS – Jerry Virgil of Holly Springs School District.
  • ITTA BENA – Patricia Ball and Eugene Davis of Leflore County School District.
  • LAUREL – Shayla Shamburger of Laurel School District.
  • LEAKSVILLE – Denise Jones of Greene County School District.
  • LELAND – Tiffany Williams of Leland School District.
  • LEXINGTON – Thomas McKibben of Holmes County School District.
  • LIBERTY – Earnest Hall of Amite County School District.
  • POPLARVILLE – Amanda Pankratz of Poplarville School District.
  • RAYMOND – Marty Hardin and Carolyn Lindsay of Hinds County School District, and Matthew Sykes of Oakley Training Center.
  • RIPLEY – Jimmy Benefield and Andy Childs of South Tippah School District.
  • STARKVILLE – Jarrod Atterberry and Heather Fair of Starkville-Oktibbeha School District.
  • UNION – Steven Robinson of Union Public School District.
  • WATER VALLEY – Michael Howland of Water Valley School District.
  • WAYNESBORO – Eric Turbyfill of Wayne County School District.
  • WIGGINS – Cassie Hickman of Stone County School District.
  • WOODVILLE – Shawanna Turner of Wilkinson County School District.