It is a tradition at our school to celebrate the beginning of a new school year with a workshop for the staff and faculty. Frequently referred to as an inservice day, ours is affectionately known as the “Fall Kickoff.” I wanted to jot down a few thoughts about what I learned at ours yesterday.
- We went over the new policies at K-State regarding concealed-carry on campus. Yes, you read that right. In the state of Kansas, anyone over the age of 21 (with certain restrictions such as no criminal record) can carry a concealed handgun on campus. While concealed carry training is recommended, there is no law mandating such training.
- Because of how our state law is written, the only permitted weapon on campus are handguns. Other weapons such as BB guns, blowguns, nun-chucks, etc. are not permitted.
- My friend and colleague Troy Harding, recipient of the Rex McArthur Family Faculty Fellow Award, spoke to us about the experience of working with teachers from the Junction City area on a technology education grant. He was inspired by their enthusiasm for and dedication to teaching. I hope to connect with these (and other great teachers from our region) hopefully through Twitter and #ksedchat. I used to be more involved in Twitter-based chats with teachers, and want to get back into that.
- We saw a fascinating video about Don Norman and his theory on emotional design. I wasn’t familiar with him before. I’m really interested in his ideas, and want to read some of his books now. See that video here:
- We toured all of the Aviation areas on our campus and learned about their degree programs. Among other things, I got to fly a drone and I saw the equipment for learning electricity/electronics in the aviation maintenance lab. I teach a week on basic electricity. These things could make a great lab for my students to try their hand at making basic circuits.
Overall, it was a relevant day. Throughout the year, we are going to become familiar with all of the degrees offered on our campus. It was a good start to a new year!