Consortium Instructor Policies
It is ETC’s desire to connect our members with high-quality supplemental classes for their children. In staffing our program, certifications and diplomas are of secondary importance to us. We have found that talented, knowledgeable, inspiring teachers can be found in all walks of life. A good teacher is a person who has a passion for their subject matter and an enthusiasm to share what he or she knows. We want to recruit and connect our students with such teachers.
In addition, it is essential that ETC parents feel comfortable leaving their children under the tutelage of the teachers we contract. This makes the personal and character references you provide, as well as the background check, the most important part of your application. ETC uses an online form to gather information about potential instructors. Completion of the application for contracted instruction is the first step toward your consideration as one of our instructors. This application may need to be updated each year an instructor teaches.
Once your references have been checked, the back-ground check has cleared, and you have been approved for a contract with ETC, a course proposal will be requested for Elective classes. In the course proposal, you should list the type of course you would like to teach along with specific details about the course, including a course syllabus. You will also be asked to tell us what qualifies you to teach on this particular subject matter. Many of our instructors are qualified solely by their own independent study of a particular subject, but you may have other formal training or professional experience.
All information requested in the Course Proposal, including course description, syllabus, and supply and text fees, must be submitted before your course can be confirmed for the schedule. A course proposal is required for each additional course you want to teach.
Most Consortium Core classes have course descriptions already in place as determined by the Teaching and Curriculum Director, the Program Director, and the Executive Director. A systematic scope and sequence helps Consortium Directors and Parents ensure that students will have all essential material covered over the course of their education and that each level leads smoothly to the next level, preparing students for a progression in their education. Instructors will be given access to the classes they are teaching. All areas covered in the course description should be included in your proposal and syllabus.
When planning your lessons, gear your class activities and lesson plans to be the most beneficial in a group setting. Be sure to capitalize on the dynamics and resources of having a group of students; such as discussion groups, multiple small groups, and group games; as well as funding for shared equipment or supplies that might otherwise be cost-prohibitive and visiting speakers who wouldn’t be available to an individual. Often the planning and mess that hands-on activities prohibit their regular implementation in a home setting. So experiments, crafts, and other hands-on activities are encouraged for all ages and will be expected for the Grammar students as well as younger students.
In many cases, class content for Elective classes, particularly classes for lower grades, should be subject-specific and not curriculum-specific. It is entirely appropriate, and welcome, for you to use, and recommend, a curriculum that families may follow outside of class. However, your syllabus should list a subject for each week in addition to any page numbers from a particular curriculum. (see sample syllabus) This will allow families to use whatever curriculum they have on hand, or use books from the library, to build upon the class content.
Instructors of upper grades will likely follow a curriculum in Elective Classes even if it is one you developed and wrote yourself. All curricula must be specified in your course proposal and submitted for review upon request. All Core Instructors must use the recommended curriculum unless otherwise approved by ETC leadership.
Due to the limited time in class, please limit the use of videos. You may send links to the videos through email or Schoology for the students to watch before or after the class session. Short video clips that introduce or enhance the topic studied may be used occasionally.
Consortium Core classes meet twice a week for 16 weeks, for a total of 32 class meetings per semester. All Consortium Elective classes should be planned to fit into a shorter twelve-week semester. Elective classes take a break one week each month. A calendar of the specific meeting dates is published each year. Please plan your course accordingly. If you have questions, please contact the Consortium Director.
DASHBOARD - ONLINE LEARNING MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
Required for Core Classes; optional for Elective Classes
Each core instructor in these grade levels will be required to use an online learning management system as the main form of communication with students and parents. There will be training sessions offered to assist you in placing your assignments into your online course. You may also communicate by email, text, or phone with parents as you see fit, but assignments are to be posted weekly on the OLMS so that the students and parents are aware of what assignments have been given for each class.
ETC is using the Dashboard through our website to help give the students some comfort with Online Learning Management Systems that they will need to know how to use in college. Using an online learning management system that can be viewed by students, parents, co-teachers, and administrators provides accountability for all. It is also a great way to keep the students accountable and the parents informed.
**HIGH SCHOOL (Core and Elective) –
ETC academic High School classes should be planned in order to provide the rigor and challenge of a complete, credit-worthy course. Whenever possible, clearly mark assignments as “essential” or “for extra study” so parents can tailor the at-home work for their student’s individual goals. This will demand a comprehensive syllabus containing a detailed course of study, including reading and writing assignments for the students to be completed at home. (See attached sample.) Students and parents should be made aware that the student’s ability to participate in class time activities will depend on the student's completion of certain assignments. In other words, do not delay course progression for unprepared, tardy, or absent students.
As a high school teacher, please be prepared to grade key assignments, or provide parents with answer keys so that they may grade their student’s work. Participation in a high school class will also likely be factored by the parent into a student’s grade for the course in their homeschool records. In order for parents to hold their children accountable for the work required in your class, you will need to communicate regularly with them. Plan to send emails or post updates on the OLMS with updates on class activities and assignments weekly. You should also periodically let parents know how their student is doing in class. Address any learning, performance or behavior problems early on to prevent further failures. And whenever possible, share the student’s successes and improvements with the parent. Make sure you notify both students and parents if you deviate from or change your syllabus. Please be prepared to provide parents with a participation grade (or feedback) and grades for all class assignments no later than one week after the last day of that semester.
DIVERSE LEARNING STRATEGIES
It is important that we as a Christian learning community be understanding of a variety of academic abilities in our students. ETC has historically attracted some families with students who are challenged when facing a traditional model or pace of learning. Parents are informed upon enrollment that ETC is not staffed with Instructors who are necessarily trained in dealing with the diversity of learning abilities that they may encounter, and therefore cannot make claim to experience with, or techniques tailored to, any specific student and cannot guarantee success in any particular case.
We do however
- practice compassion, tolerance, patience, and understanding when dealing with students with special learning needs
- engage consultants with specialized training whenever possible
- strongly encourage parental input and participation to help diverse learners be successful in the Consortium classroom
- modify lessons, activities and assignments when it is reasonably possible to do so
- allow accommodations for students as parents permit
- maintain open communication with parents about their student’s performance
Ultimately, if the strategies that we are capable of implementing to integrate a particular student into the Consortium classroom are unsuccessful, it is the parent’s responsibility to investigate and provide alternative strategies, up to and including attending class with their student. Regardless of a student’s learning ability he or she is expected to abide by the ETC Code of Conduct.
Following the application, course proposal, and interview, you may be presented with a contract for your services, including a non-employee compensation offer. Your acceptance of the contract engages your services with ETC for that semester. ETC reserves the right to cancel your contract due to insufficient enrollment, conflicts in scheduling, or for any other reason determined by the leadership.
Instructors will have the first opportunity to register their children in Consortium classes during the enrollment period that he or she is teaching. Complementary nursery care is provided on-site for the children of Instructors under the age of 36 months. Each teacher’s compensation may vary based on class enrollment, the difficulty of course material, and the qualifications of the instructor, among other factors. Any payment for Instruction is to be considered contract labor. The compensation of Instructors with children enrolled in the Consortium will be applied to the balance of their child’s tuition and supply fees before being paid to the Instructor. Recipients of monetary compensation over $400 should expect a 1099 report of earnings at the end of the year. Core teachers will be paid the balance owed to them twice a semester. Elective teachers will receive their compensation in one check at the end of the semester.
A review of the Consortium day procedures and essential policies will take place before the first day of each Semester. Instructors are required to attend orientation each school year that he or she is teaching. Additional training or meetings may be required especially for Core teachers.
In the event that you must be absent from a Consortium class session contact the Program Director or Assistant Director immediately.
- Core Instructors are required to prepare two simple, on-topic, emergency lesson plans and Elective Instructors are required to prepare one lesson plan. These should be submitted to the Director of Teaching and Curriculum no later than the first day of Instructor Orientation and training. If your emergency lesson plan is used in the event of your unplanned absence a replacement emergency lesson plan is due upon your return. If an Instructor does not provide these backup lesson plans, or the replacement lesson plan, one will be created or bought and provided for your class at a cost to you of S15 per lesson.
- Remember that being absent from or late to class impacts several people’s schedules and workloads and costs students valuable learning time. Absences without an approved substitute in excess of one Elective class or two Core classes per semester will result in a $20 reduction of pay per class OR an increase of $20 per hour to your tuition charges. Late arrival to 1 or more class totaling 30 minutes or more will result in the same $20 reduction or increase. Excessive absences or tardiness will put an Instructor’s eligibility for future teaching positions in jeopardy.
In each classroom, there is a 3-ring binder that contains class rosters for each class, class syllabi (for subs), and other information. There are also forms to fill out to notify leadership of any discipline issues, accidents or inquiries, broken furniture or other damage, etc. There is also a building map with an emergency evacuation plan in the binder as well.
To the Consortium
- Participate in all Consortium events in accordance with ETC Policies and Procedures. Abide by, and set an example of, the ETC Code of Conduct.
- Provide an accurate biography and course syllabus.
- Agree to the ETC statement of faith. (posted under the About ETC tab on our website, etcnwa.com)
- Choose texts which are not contrary to ETC’s statement of faith or a Biblical worldview.
- Provide a list of required books, supplies or equipment.
- Submit a list of needed supplies at least two weeks in advance. Supplies will be provided by ETC.
- Make all necessary arrangements as soon as possible in the event that you must be absent from a Consortium class session and notify the Consortium Director as soon as possible.
- Submit to the review of your teaching practices and class activities by allowing admittance to leadership seeking to conduct an evaluation. Copy the Consortium Program Director on all class emails. Add ETC leadership as administrators to your OLMS courses as requested.
- Communicate to ETC leadership any problems, questions, or help needed as soon as possible so the issues may be quickly resolved. ETC is represented by each of its’ teachers so let your light and love shine.
- Give ETC your best. Parents are paying for the classes you are teaching. They could choose to be somewhere else. Remember Colossians 3:17, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
To Your Students
- Arrive on the day of classes in time to check-in, set up and make preparations to start class promptly. You should also leave and check for messages for and from parents or Consortium staff there.
- Prepare creative, engaging lesson plans for the students in your class periods.
- A non-negotiable condition of your position as an Instructor in the Consortium is that you teach in a manner that is not contrary to ETC’s statement of faith or a Biblical worldview.
- Address all student behavior issues promptly with one verbal warning.
- Fill the full 55 minute class period with relevant instruction or activities. Make sure that you have prepared enough material so that there is not any down time/free time during class. Conclude class on time so students have sufficient time to transition to their next class.
To Your Class Assistant
- Defer classroom management issues, such as taking role and dealing with discipline, to the Class Assistant.
- Refrain from putting teaching responsibilities on your Assistant. You may ask the Class Assistant for help with passing out papers or aiding students, but remember his or her primary job is to supervise and manage the students.
To the Parents of your Students
- Maintain consistent, clear communication with the parents about any changes to the syllabus, issues with their child, and progress of learning. You will be provided with email addresses and phone numbers of every student’s parent. However, all communication should be done through the Dashboard.
- Permit any parent access to your classroom to observe at any time. Parents should also have access to your course material for review at your convenience.
- Homework and enrichment activities are welcome suggestions to many homeschooling parents. Ideally, most Consortium classes will be structured so that parents can build on them to create a full educational course. You should provide parents with adequate information about what is going on in your class so that they can build upon that. For example, you should let students and parents know what chapters will be read during which weeks for required books; offer supplemental reading, website, or video suggestions; or send home worksheets or assignments to be completed during the week. Be sure and make it clear which assignments are necessary for participation in the class and which ones are optional, supplemental work.
- Grades are not issued by the Consortium. If you would like to use a grade value, either percentage or letter, or a written evaluation to communicate a student’s performance in your class to the parent, you may do so. It is the parent’s prerogative to integrate your grade or evaluation into their own child’s homeschool records or not. Therefore, do not share these evaluations with the student. Remember, evaluations should be submitted to parents for all high school courses.
supplies such as crayons, colored pencils, glue and glue sticks, construction paper, scissors, markers, etc. will be provided by ETC and should be stocked in each classroom. Additional supplies are located in the storage area if you run out or need more of a specific supply. Specific curriculum supplies (science equipment, math manipulatives, etc.) are located in the storage area in labeled tubs. There may also be additional materials in the storage area for your use such as art materials, paper goods, etc. that you may use for your classes. Please check the storage area for needed supplies before buying them.
**If you borrow supplies from another classroom, YOU are responsible for making sure those materials are returned to the proper place immediately after use so the teacher will have the supplies he/she needs for their class.
If you would like to leave supplies for your class at the church during the week between classes, please bring a tub with lid, labeled with your name and class, to hold your supplies. These supplies will be kept in designated ETC cabinets in each classroom and/or in the designated storage area. Loose items will be added to the general ETC supplies or disposed of.
A moderate number of copies may be made in the Consortium office. If the number of copies you will need for a particular class will exceed approximately 20 per student per semester please notify the program director.
An Instructor Evaluation Form will be made available to assistants, students, and parents at the close of each term. The consensus of the evaluations will be used to help Consortium administrators and parents know how each Instructor performed and will likely impact future contract terms.
The Instructor at ETC is a parent of a team. We all work together and help each other as needed. If you need assistance with curriculum, where to purchase supplies, ideas for a topic you are studying, please do not hesitate to ask a fellow teacher and/or a leadership member. Please do not feel that you are all alone or that you will be judged badly if you ask for help. We all benefit from helping and encouraging one another.
Classroom assignments are based on number of students and age of students as well as room requirements for each class. You are responsible to have your students help clean up the room before dismissal time. If you need a vacuum, please let your zone assistant know and they will help locate one. Please leave the room clean for the next class. If there are any issues with the room, please contact ETC leadership asap. Classrooms upstairs may hang a few visuals on the wall if needed. Downstairs classrooms may not hang anything on the walls. If you are the last teacher using that room for the day, please make sure it has been cleaned, tables wiped down, whiteboard cleaned, trash emptied, etc. before leaving. If each teacher takes responsibility for their area, the whole team can go home earlier.
**If you have an extra messy activity, please check with the Consortium Director or Assistant Director for a possible room change for that activity or place tarps or plastic tablecloths over the carpet and tables to protect them from damage.
FOOD AND DRINK
Instructors may bring a beverage to class in a covered container. Students are not allowed to have food or drinks (except water bottles with lids) in the classroom. If an Instructor would like to include a food item in a lesson special accommodations may be made. Food should not be a regular part of your class activity (a cooking class being the obvious exception.) Be sure and check your roster for possible allergies, and inform parents in advance. Please consult the Program Director or Teaching & Curriculum Director.
BEGINNING AND END OF EACH SEMESTER
At the beginning of each semester, you are responsible for making sure your classroom is ready to receive students. You are also required to attend at least one teacher orientation each year.
- the end of each semester (elective classes) and school year (core classes), please take all personal belongings home. There is no room to store them in the storage area. Please return all ETC materials to their proper place in the storage area (or designated areas) before leaving for the summer. Please remove all visuals (if any) upstairs from the walls for the summer. Please label all ETC materials that are for a specific class (Biology, Chess, Physical Science, etc.) and place in a tub in the Storage area.
Students are NOT allowed to use their phones, laptops, or other electronic devices for anything other than supervised classroom activities and assignments while at ETC. If a student is caught using an electronic device, please notify the Consortium Director immediately.
Wi-fi is available for Instructors only. Please DO NOT share the password with students. If you have a project requiring internet usage, please speak with the Program Director.
Limit movies/videos in your class. These are easy to share for your students to watch at home. Class time is limited and should be maximized.
Please do not text, message or talk on your phone while teaching class unless you have an emergency. The students are only in your class for 55 minutes. Please give them your full attention during that time.
The church staff has work that they need to do. Please do not ask them questions or report issues to them. All questions and issues need to be reported to the Consortium Director or Assistant Director. They will direct any church issues to our church liaison. Thanks for your cooperation.