to the training site for Linking Agents, a service of the Elementary
and Middle Schools Technical Assistance Center (EMSTAC). A Linking
Agent is an individual in a school system who promotes school improvement
by helping individual schools or school districts understand the change
process and implement research-based practices. This person may initially
work at the school building level prior to initiating more widespread
district level work. He or she has strong leadership skills and serves
as a catalyst for change and improvement in schools. This person brings
school teams together, helps them assess school-wide needs and determine
the best use of resources (inside and outside) avaliable to their
school system. In this role, you will be responsible for providing
ongoing support to strengthen your district's system for improving
services to students with disabilities. The Linking Agent also coordinates
school-wide efforts, works to ensure the implementation of innovative
practice, and collaborates with the EMSTAC Technical Assistance Liaison
to collect data to measure the progress in your district. The change
process is one that takes collaborative efforts and time. The process
of bringing research to practice may take several months of planning
and teaming before implementation begins. This on-line training course
is designed to prepare you for the challenges and opportunities you
will face as you bring about innovation and achievement in your school
and school district.
In an effort to meet the typically hectic schedules of our Linking Agents,
this on-line training program is divided into 10 separate modules. Each
module can probably be completed in 15 to 60 minutes. The modules run
chronologically, beginning with an introductory lesson in the basics
of the Linking Agent initiative and leading you through a process to
develop and strengthen your communications and problem-solving skills.
You'll end the training by learning how to promote and replicate your
success for the benefit of your peers. The entire training should be
completed before beginning your Linking Agent work in your school district.
Included in each module are specified learning goals, along with a series
of questions to help you determine how well you've met them. Also included
throughout the training are valuable on-line resources you can tap into
as you build your capacity to respond to your school or school district
Many modules also include interactive features to enhance your understanding
of the tactics and strategies employed by some of our most successful
Linking Agents. A Linking Agent from Frederick, Maryland, will accompany
you through your Linking Agent training. As an introduction to each
module, listen to a linking agent as she frames the key ideas through
her experience. We have provided various options for accessing the
information provided by a linking agent. To view and hear the clips,
you will need to click on one of the following links to access downloading:
RealVideo or QuickTime.
Note: Be patient when downloading the video clip! They have
been known to take awhile . . . but are definitely worth it! If you
choose not to download this software, or do not have the capability
on your computer, you can read the text by clicking on the View Text
link next to the picture of a linking agent. Keep in mind that while
we believe that the clips are beneficial and provide a "real"
look at the experience and work of a Linking Agent, there is no new
information presented in the clips.
save time, and to ensure that you receive the most important information,
it's very important that you go through the training chronologically,
and that you complete each module before moving on to the next. It
is likely that you will want to print several of the tables and graphics
throughout the Linking Agent training. In order to print, you will
need to set your printer properties on the landscape option.