Contextual Information Form



Educational Portfolio


1.   Briefly identify the type of school/program in which you teach, and the grade/subject configuration (single grade, departmentalized, interdisciplinary teams, etc.). Also identify the grade(s), age levels, courses, and number of students you teach each day, as well as the average number of students in each class.

         I currently teach at Boyertown Area Senior High School. This is located in the Boyertown Area School District, the largest (square mile) school district in Pennsylvania. The Boyertown Area School District is situated on the northwestern edge of the greater Philadelphia suburban sprawl in southeastern Pennsylvania.  About 45 miles northwest of Philadelphia, it is just 20 miles south of Allentown and 20 miles east of Reading, straddling the Montgomery-Berks County line. When it was formed as a jointure in 1953 it was one of the largest school districts in the state, covering nearly 100 square miles. It encompasses Colebrookdale, Douglass, Earl, and Washington Townships and the boroughs of Bally, Bechtelsville and Boyertown in Berks County plus the townships of Douglass, New Hanover and Upper Frederick in Montgomery County. The population in the district is over 38,000. The district has been shifting from a predominance of farming and blue collar homes to a suburban-type bedroom community.

         The high school consists of about 1700 students from ages 15 to 18 in grades ten through twelve. I teach students from each of those grades in the Business Education Department. I, with my cooperating teacher, have been reconstructing curriculum to adapt to the shuffling of teachers in the department. On average, there are about 20 students in each of my five classes. I help my cooperating teacher with his classes in Business Law and Professional Development classes. I am also providing my assistance in two additional classes: Introduction to Access/PowerPoint, and Basic Computer Skills, a special education class. Another aspect of student teaching that I am able to oversee and contribute to is the organization of the Gifted Education program as well as the implementation of Enrichment Honors Course (EHOC) seminars, field trips, and symposiums that are offered to these 120 students; I am also able to oversee and contribute to the construction of the Gifted Individualized Education Plans (GIEP) that each of these students require.


2.        Write a brief paragraph containing information about your teaching context that you believe would be important for assessors to know in order to understand your portfolio entries. You might include details of any state or district mandates that may shape your teaching (including required curricula, standardized tests or other assessments, pacing, or texts). You might also include information regarding the type of community in which this teaching occurs, and the degree to which you have access to current technologies.

         Students at Boyertown Area Senior High School have extensive technology at their fingertips. At every single school in the district, there are daily-maintained, networked computer labs with Internet access and printing capabilities. Each student has access to these computers, given that they have signed and complied with the Internet Security Policy of the district. Through their student ID number, they have allotted space to the network servers where they may save current documents and projects they are working on for their various classes. Teachers have the same rights on the district servers, as well as the capabilities of a district email account with internet access. There is a computer with internet and printing capabilities in every single room in the district. Teachers also have access to an extensive amount of audio/visual equipment. This equipment is provided to them at their request.

         Boyertown Area School District does not request submission of formal lesson or unit plans. Prior to the start of the school year, however, they request curriculum monitoring forms for each course. These plans are complied for each course offered through each department. The curriculum monitoring forms provide a basic course outline and are updated for completion at the end of every semester.