Office of Educational

Office of Educational<br>Partnerships

Sweet Home Middle & High Schools

Canisius College and Sweet Home Middle and High Schools are strong partners in a Professional Development School relationship.  Adolescence Education candidates complete field experiences and student teaching placements in grades 7-12 in both Sweet Home High School and Sweet Home Middle School.  Under the expert mentoring of highly qualified teachers and administrators, the students of Sweet Home and Canisius excel.

Canisius Counseling and Human Service Department works with the Sweet Home students in mentoring programs that give valuable experiences to Canisius counseling candidates who work one-on-one with Sweet Home Middle School students for an entire year to help them make the transition from urban to suburban school settings. Physical education majors work with middle school athletes to help them to understand the importance of balancing academic efforts with participation in sports. 

Sweet Home teachers and staff as well as Mr. Heffley offer numerous seminars and individual mentoring for our student teachers on site at Sweet Home. The topics for these seminars range from how to have a successful interview to how to build a resume.

One of the exciting programs done at Sweet Home is the research project. Students in an honors class at Sweet Home are paired with professors at Canisius who help them conduct original research. They then present this research at Ignatian Scholarship Day at Canisius.

Dr. Bailey and Dr. Finn often teach classes on site at Sweet Home. These classes are especially beneficial to Canisius students because they are able to work directly with the Sweet Home faculty and students. Many Sweet Home  faculty and administrators speak at these classes, giving students opportunities to hear and see what goes on in a typical school day. There are also other classes in which the Canisius students visit Sweet Home Middle School followed by a seminar presented by Mr. Heffley and a Sweet Home administrator.

Students from Canisius College are assisting a new initiative at SHMS by tutoring for the Sweet Home Middle School Homework Club as a part of their academic program at Canisius. Many of the Canisius tutors at SHMS are also student teaching in the Sweet Home district, and their work as tutor gives them another way in which to practice their craft and gain insights from one-to-one contact with students. 

What Teacher Candidates are saying about Sweet Home! 

The PDS partnership between Canisius and Sweet Home was an enormous part of my experience at Canisius. I served as a research assistant to Dr. Nancy Bailey during a graduate research class conducted on site at Sweet Home Middle School. The opportunity to conduct research right in classrooms was a real privilege. Through this experience I worked with several faculty members and was even introduced to the administration. I also built important relationships during both my pre-student teaching at the middle school and my student teaching at the high school. Mr. Heffley, our PDS liaison, met with the small group of Canisius student teachers at Sweet Home every week during our student teaching to encourage, advise, and field any concerns we might have. He also recruited me for a very valuable tutoring opportunity in the middle school. Because of the relationships I was able to build out of the PDS partnership, I actually landed a long-term substitute position right out of college. I couldn't be more thrilled to be working in a district that I already know and love!
- Elizabeth Van Harken '13

For more information, contact the PDS liaisons:
Peter J. Heffley, Coordinating Supervisor of Student Teachers,