Utica school staff recognized by Microsoft for excellence in technology education – Macomb Daily



Two instructional technology coaches from Utica community schools have been recognized at the highest level for their talents, joining the Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) 2020-21 program.

To be accepted into the MIE Expert program, Trapper Hallam and Courtney Conley had to show their mastery of Microsoft and show how they transformed their classrooms or training to be more inclusive, supportive and inventive.

Since UCS is a Microsoft district, Conley felt it would be a great opportunity for her to learn new ways to leverage Microsoft Office 365 and other tools across the district.

“As a MIE expert, I will be aware of tons of professional development as well as opportunities to collaborate globally with other MIE experts,” said Conley.

According to Hallam, the best place to learn and grow as an instructional technology coach is the MIE Expert program.

“The sharing that takes place in the community is fantastic, and we can take it all back to our staff and to the district,” said Hallam.

Utica Community Schools Superintendent Robert Monroe said the initiative shown by Hallam and Conley echoes the district’s support for staff and teachers who are expanding their knowledge base whenever possible.

“Courtney and Trapper have shown great leadership in pursuing this program,” said Monroe. “I can’t wait to see how their efforts are contributing to student success across our district. “

“Joining the program gives us a wealth of knowledge and support to foster the growth of education, especially in the digital space,” Hallam said.

However, for Hallam, it’s not about recognition, but rather the community of excellent educators and pedagogical coaches of which he and Conley are a part.

“If we can find a better or more effective way to help teachers make their jobs a little easier, then it was well worth it,” Hallam said.

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