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Sarah D.

Barnett
132 Caraway Road, Locust Grove, GA, 30248 w 678-873-1226
sarah.barnett@henry.k12.ga.us
March 29, 2016
To Whom it May Concern:
I am writing to express my interest in the Secondary English Teacher on Special Assignment
position. I am a current high school English teacher at Woodland High School and am excited
about the possibility of moving out of the classroom and into a role that allows me to work
collaboratively with classroom teachers to improve literacy instruction both in the English
language arts classroom and across the curriculum.
As an English teacher, I approach reading and writing instruction with a mix of creativity and
logic. I first offer students a variety of basic templates for strong writing in various contexts and
then layer those templates with artistic and creative elements that allow student voices to shine. I
am both gifted and Advanced Placement certified, but I also work with Woodland’s Personalized
Learning Academy, a cohort of students identified as struggling learners who may be off-track
for graduation. This unique combination of student groups affords me the opportunity to scaffold
complex AP-level close reading and writing skills in a manner that is accessible for even
reluctant and struggling readers and writers. Moreover, by making literature relevant and real to
students through a variety of contemporary connections, I am able to achieve much success in
the classroom.
I have also worked diligently this past year to help establish a Literacy Focus team at my school.
Our primary goal was to establish an expectation of writing across the curriculum, a goal we
achieved by training teachers in social studies, science, modern language, math, and career/tech
in close reading and text-based writing methods. Students have been asked to use the same
writing strategies in all of their content areas, thus allowing students to see how reading and
writing skills pervade all topics of learning and such should not simply be confined to the
English language arts classroom.
Still, while I enjoy working with high school students, my education, I believe, has uniquely
prepared me to serve in the capacity of Teacher on Special Assignment. My coursework for my
master’s degree first sparked my interest in leading professional development as I learned and
then implemented educational theories related to adult education. Furthermore, my specialist’s
degree was firmly rooted in technology coaching, emphasizing not simply acquiring knowledge
about emerging instructional technologies, but rather developing the skills to coach teachers and
administrators in ways to use these technologies for improved student outcomes. I have
employed these skills by serving as POINT representative for my school and leading numerous
professional learning sessions related to its features. Likewise, I am routinely called upon to
provide Infinite Campus assistance and to offer other school-level training on research-based
practices, including most recently training on various formative assessment strategies, both those
that are and are not technology-based. I presented at the Henry County Schools Technology
Conference in 2014 and was selected to serve on the ELA District Content Support Team,

As a Teacher on Special Assignment.k12. and that their needs are being addressed in order to provide the buy-in necessary to enact change. I aspire to provide ELA teachers with the individualized support necessary to strengthen and enhance district initiatives towards personalized learning and graduation competencies. As a department chair. Thank you for your consideration.ga. encouraging them to try new strategies and use data to guide their day-to-day classroom decisions. and I have steered planning sessions for some personalized learning initiatives that will be implemented in our department next year. I firmly believe that relationships are central to effective change. I am a graduate of the second ASPIRE cohort. Therefore. As a professional learning leader. Sincerely. “One-shot” professional learning without appropriate follow-up seldom leads to any changes being implemented. Teachers must feel that they are respected. that their expertise is valued. I routinely mentor and coach both new and experienced teachers on my team. what I think sets me apart from other candidates for this position is the unique combination I can offer to the ELA department: a love for literacy and writing instruction and a solid foundation in adult education and coaching models. I look forward to speaking with you soon.through which I have developed and delivered multiple times a professional learning session focused on creating a paperless classroom using Google Drive resources. Additionally.us .barnett@henry. I am excited to discuss the possibilities of expanding my work outside the classroom to a position that would allow me to focus on providing Henry County teachers with effective professional learning related to literacy in the English language arts classroom and across the curriculum. Sarah Barnett Woodland High School Sarah. I have worked collaboratively with the teachers in my department and school to analyze and revise tasks so that students are provided opportunities to exercise greater cognitive demand. a leadership training program that has required of me to facilitate professional conversations and lead professional development at the school and district levels related to personalized learning in the English classroom and increasing rigor through depth of knowledge task analysis.