1. How do you maintain supportive and respectful relationships with your colleagues?
Cultivating relationships at work that are positive, supportive, and empowering is critical to our sense of well-being. Each of us deserves to work in an environment that is respectful, one in which we feel valued and treated as we would like to be treated. Treating others with courtesy, kindness and consideration, regardless of their race, religion, gender, size, ability, age or opinion. It is important to encourage co-workers to express opinions and ideas. I listen to what they have to say before expressing my own viewpoint. I never interrupt or cut off another person.
2. What specific actions can you take to communicate to colleagues the value of ongoing professional learning?
When people use the term “professional development,” they usually mean a formal process such as a conference, seminar, or workshop; collaborative learning among members of a work team; or a course at a college or university. However, professional development can also occur in informal contexts such as discussions among work colleagues, independent reading and research, observations of a colleague’s work, or other learning from a peer. With that said, I discuss all of the above with the other autistic support teachers that I work with. By having these discussions with my colleagues and sharing my knowledge and learning with them, they do the same with me and with others. For teachers and school and district leaders to be as effective as possible, they continually