Stone, Taney County teachers collaborate during education summit in Branson

Branson, MO. -- Teachers were teaching teachers at the Tri-Lakes Educational Summt on Friday, as about 1,100 teachers and staff from seven Stone and Taney County schools came together to collaborate.

Branson hosted the multi-district conference, which was all about improving education for area students.

The summit began with an inspiring keynote speaker.

"To give a shot in the arm to our educators this time of year to let them know that they're doing a great job and just always to honor education," Branson School District Superintendent Dr. Brad Swofford said.

Attendees then attended specialized breakout sessions.

"We are trying to meet all of our teachers needs, PARAS, SROS," Tri-Lakes Summit Planning Team Member Dr. Michelle Brenner said.

Topics included everything from "art teacher round-tables" to "creating a culture of joy in the classroom" to things people might not even realize teachers deal with on a daily basis.

"We have a lot of topics that deal with the mental health side of the school that we used to not have to worry about as much, in the past," Dr. Brenner said.

Teachers are even taught about prescription drug abuse prevention.

Administrators say, teachers are now teaching much more than school subjects.

"I would want communities to know that, that their teachers are stepping up and doing more things than they ever have for our kids and their work is greatly appreciated,"Dr. Swofford said.

This was the first year for the educational summit but the planning team says they're already looking forward to next year.