Park City School District rolls out training process to prepare for influx of hires
Come the first day of school, there will be several new faces in the Park City School District.
Among them will be a new superintendent, a couple of new principals and a handful of assistant principals. The district plans to roll out a new strategy this school year to help the transition for the new hires run as smoothly as possible.
David Gomez, interim superintendent of the district, said the training process is expected to start on Aug. 8, giving the administrators a week to settle in after their expected Aug. 1 start dates. They will go through training with the superintendent and cabinet members on Aug. 8. A retreat with all of the administrators in the district is expected to follow later that week.
Then the new administrators, along with those who were hired in the last couple of years, will continue their monthly trainings to go over student discipline policies, district communication, human resource procedures and school programs. The state administrative standards will also be taught. The trainings are expected to continue throughout the end of the school year, Gomez said.
People within the district as well as outside consultants are expected to lead the trainings.
The decision to put a clear onboarding process in place was made this year after the Park City Board of Education expressed concerns about the possibility of some training slipping through the cracks with the influx of new positions.
Petra Butler, a member of the Board, did not initially vote in favor of the budget because she was worried about the onboarding of new hires in the district. Gomez heard those concerns and got to work laying out a new structure. He said that district cabinet members and superintendent Jill Gildea were also in favor of creating a new process for new hires.
Gomez said that onboarding has taken place in the district on a less formal basis in the past. Much of the training took place during regular weekly administrative meetings.
With the new process, incoming administrators will be paired with mentors within the school district throughout the year to talk about any issues or ask questions. Gildea will be in charge of selecting and assigning mentors.
“We’ve got some good seasoned principals that we can pull from,” Gomez said.
Gildea is expected to help finalize the content that will be covered during the monthly trainings once she has stepped into her role.
Gomez said that the new onboarding process is expected to continue each year moving forward, and that monthly trainings for all administrators will likely also continue in years to come with different, new content.
Those trainings will help identify staff that could be eligible for higher positions within the district and train them.
“We want to create this process of identifying administrators within our ranks and then put them on a path so that we can get them into a program,” he said.
Gomez said that the trainings will not cost the district any more than it already spends on training its new hires.
The arsenic-and-lead-containing soil has been a contentious issue for the district, which piled it onto the junior high campus in actions that were later discovered to be in violation of a covenant with the Environmental Protection Agency.
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