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National Board Process Support Groups
by Jennifer Sinotte

This week we asked our diarists, "What are the pros and cons of working in a support group while going through the National Board Process? Would you recommend it? How important is it to have a support group member be working towards the same certification?"

November 24, 2003

If a new candidate asked me about the most important factor in completing the National Board Certification process, I would have to say that it's to make sure they don't go through it alone. I can't stress enough the value of having someone to bounce ideas off of, to read entries to, or to offer a positive word when you're feeling as though this was the biggest mistake of your life. Whether you're going through the process with colleagues at your school or taking a course for National Board candidates, you definitely need some kind of support system in place. So many times, I've wanted to just give up! If I hadn't had someone to turn to, someone to listen to my complaints about the process, I think I would have quit months ago. This certification process is very stressful; you're constantly second guessing yourself. Sharing it with someone who's experiencing the same emotions has helped tremendously... keeping me sane even though at times I feel insane!

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Meet Jennifer Sinotte

Jennifer Sinotte received her bachelor's degree in elementary education from Franklin Pierce College in May 1992, and her master's degree in special education from Providence College in May of 1998. Jennifer has spent her teaching career at Bradford Elementary School in Westerly, Rhode Island. For the first two years of her career, she was a resource teacher for grades four and five. For the past four years, Jennifer taught in a primary self-contained classroom, and recently switched to full-day kindergarten.

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