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20130805 MCISD-New-teacher-district-tour AF  0023MISSION—Early Monday morning, new teachers to the Mission Consolidated Independent School District toured the Mission and Alton area by bus as part of their New Teacher Orientation Training.

The two-week training program covers everything from district curriculum for secondary and elementary levels to gifted and talented training and classroom management. For the first time, a district bus tour was offered to teachers in the hopes of building a foundation for a stronger teacher-student relationship.

One of the hosts of the training session was Executive Director for Secondary Education Maria Del Carmen Garcia who explained to teachers the theme for 2013-2014 was relationships to create success. She added if the teachers were able to see where their students come from, they could understand how to relate with their classroom.

Three buses carried over 60 teachers from street to street, with a community liaison on board to explain what they were seeing and to answer questions. The liaisons explained how far district lines went, and the best ways to contact parents.

While some of the new employees have teaching experience, others are completely green to the career. Claudia Villarreal, a third grade teacher, said the training session was exciting and made her one step closer to her new classroom.

“It (the tour) is helpful because we get to see things you don’t see very often,” Villarreal said.

Ana Banda, who has been hired to be a kindergarten teacher, said she had never really explored the Mission region.

“I’m from McAllen…so I’ve never been on these streets, like Mile 10, so it is new for me,” Banda said.

Both teachers were nervous to start their new positions as teachers with the district, but added they were prepared for the new school year.

“I have a mixture of every feeling….We don’t know what to expect, but I’m mainly excited,” Villarreal said.

The bus tour ran north to 10 Mile Line, cruised through the cities of Alton, Mission and McAllen and ended on Griffin Parkway. New Teacher Orientation Training will continue through Aug. 16.

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