As the school year nears its end, teachers everywhere are contending with mounting time pressures, waning resources and energy reserves, maybe even an epidemic of spring fever. For some teachers, though, the frenzy and frustrations seem to last all year–and they may feel isolated, underappreciated, and powerless to change the situation. AACTE President/CEO Lynn M. Gangone has this message to encourage them to strengthen their capacity to both support students and thrive as successful members of the professional community.
As a teacher, you’re focused on helping students. You draw from your content knowledge, determine appropriate pedagogy for the particular child and context, and forge connections with resources to support each learner’s growth. What’s more, these practices benefit more than just the young people in your care–teachers, too, thrive with a rich support network in their community and tailored opportunities to learn and grow as professionals.
AACTE joins the National Education Association (NEA) and the National Parent Teacher Association (PTA) in celebrating excellent teachers during National Teacher Appreciation Week, May 7-11, and National Teacher Day, May 8.
The NEA and National PTA invite you to get involved by thanking a teacher in the following ways:
Thank a Teacher on Social Media May 7-11
The 2018 National Teacher of the Year was announced today on CBS This Morning: Mandy Manning, a National Board Certified Teacher of high school English and math in Spokane, Washington, has been named to the honor, following the announcement of four finalists earlier this year.
Manning began her teaching career almost two decades ago working with the Peace Corps in Armenia. Since then, she has taught in Japan and in classrooms throughout the United States. Manning’s global perspective has been instrumental in her current classroom in the Newcomer Center at Ferris High School in Spokane, a place where immigrant and refugee students are provided the opportunity to study English, foundational reading skills, mathematics, and computers.
The National Network of State Teachers of the Year (NNSTOY) requests proposals for workshops and other interactive sessions to be presented at its 2018 National Teacher Leadership Conference, July 8-11 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Proposals are due by February 5.
The 4-day conference will convene state and national teachers of the year (and finalists from the states) to “engage with national education leaders, administrators, policy makers, the business community, and colleagues to dynamically teach and learn in order to impact students, schools, and the profession.” Themed Teaching Tomorrow’s Leaders, the conference will offer sessions focused on four urgent problems of practice identified through a membership survey by NNSTOY:
An online Education Talk Radio program last month featured AACTE members in a discussion of how their educator preparation programs contribute to high teacher quality. Host Larry Jacobs interviewed guests Rebecca West Burns, assistant professor at the University of South Florida, and D. Mark Meyers, director of the Educational Administration Program at Xavier University (OH).
The show began with discussion around the continuum of teacher development, from preservice preparation through stages of leadership, both formal and informal. Burns explained that teacher leaders include those who are instructional coaches or mentors as well as those acting less formally as leaders from within their classroom. Teachers can work collaboratively to share knowledge and help each other make progressive changes in their school. Meyers added that leadership principles applied by teacher leaders and administrators are often the same, although they may be implemented differently.
Everyone likes a great investment, a sure thing, a great return for the money. In education, as in the markets, trying to figure out where to invest for the best results is challenging. Still, solid research can point us in the right direction, which is why I couldn’t wait for the results of the latest study in the “Good to Great” series by the National Network of State Teachers of the Year (NNSTOY): Investing in What It Takes to Move From Good to Great: Exemplary Educators Identify Their Most Important Learning Experiences.
AACTE congratulates 2017 National Teacher of the Year Sydney Chaffee, who teaches 9th-grade humanities at Codman Academy Charter Public School in Boston, Massachusetts. (See AACTE’s press release issued today.)
Chaffee, who has been a teacher for a decade, earned her bachelor’s degree in women’s history and writing from Sarah Lawrence College (NY) and her master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Lesley University (MA).
The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.
Last month, faculty from Ohio University’s Patton College of Education joined with teachers from a partner school to participate in an equity-focused leadership summit in Chicago. Two Federal Hocking (OH) Middle School teachers – Robin Hawk, an eighth-grade social studies teacher who led the team, and Tessa Molina, a seventh-grade math teacher – took part in the Inclusion, Equity, and Opportunity Teacher Leadership Summit December 2-4, along with Patton College faculty Bill Elasky, instructor of teacher education and a board of education member at Federal Hocking Local Schools; Mathew Felton, assistant professor of teacher education; and Lisa Harrison, associate professor of teacher education.
AACTE and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities are working collaboratively with the U.S. Department of Education to put together a dynamic Teach to Lead summit this fall related to teacher preparation in the United States. We invite you to apply by September 15 to participate in this event, which will be held November 3-4 in Washington, DC.
The summit will convene teams of educators to focus on the successes and challenges in teacher preparation. If you are developing or currently have partnerships with your local community colleges and school districts, then this event is especially for you. This summit is particularly timely given the presidential election this fall and the implementation/interpretation of the Every Student Succeeds Act. It will be an opportunity to explore our narrative prior to the new administration, which is critical to enable us to spotlight the high-quality work we do with teacher candidates and the children they will serve.
You frequently hear AACTE champion the virtues of advocacy—of making your voice heard to help land you a place “at the table” rather than “on the menu.” AACTE staff are practiced at this habit, engaging in regular meetings with key officials at the U.S. Department of Education and elsewhere to share the work of the Association and our membership. I am pleased to share that some of these efforts have paid off with an invitation from the Department to collaborate on an upcoming teacher preparation summit.
The Department invited AACTE and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities to be partners on the summit, scheduled for November 3-4 in Washington, DC, as part of the “Teach to Lead” series focused on amplifying teachers’ voice and role in transforming education and related policy. This event will bring teams of educators together to discuss actionable ideas for collaborative, teacher-led improvements to teacher preparation. We are honored to represent you at the table on this critical issue.
What did you do this summer?
For many of us in education, summer is a time for reflection on the past and planning for the future. We engage in professional learning, and if we’re lucky, we expand our horizons by visiting new places.
I had the great fortune to do all of these things last month during a fascinating trip to China.
At the invitation of China’s National Center for School Curriculum and Textbook Development, several U.S. education leaders and I participated in the China Teacher Leaders Forum and a series of other meetings with Chinese agency heads, educators and teacher educators, and business and philanthropic representatives.*
AACTE congratulates 2016 National Teacher of the Year Jahana Hayes, who teaches history at John F. Kennedy High School in Waterbury, Connecticut.
The Council of Chief State School Officers announced Hayes’ selection last week following a rigorous selection process. She will be honored Tuesday, along with the other three finalists and all of the state teachers of the year, by President Barack Obama in a ceremony at the White House.
Hayes, who has been in the classroom for more than 12 years, earned her bachelor’s degree in history and social science from Southern Connecticut State University and her master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Saint Joseph (CT).
A new study from the National Network of State Teachers of the Year (NNSTOY) introduces compelling research on the characteristics of teacher leaders and factors that challenge or support them. The report, Great to Influential: Teacher Leaders’ Roles in Supporting Instruction, follows up on the 2014 study From Good to Great: Exemplary Teachers Share Perspectives on Increasing Teacher Effectiveness Across the Career Continuum. In light of the new study’s findings, the report suggests strategies for school districts to capitalize on the assets presented by teacher leaders, ranging from providing broader career path options to increasing their interaction with preservice and novice educators.
Editor’s Note: This briefing has been postponed due to weather challenges. Please stay tuned for an announcement of the new date.
On Wednesday, January 27, the National Network of State Teachers of the Year (NNSTOY) will hold a congressional briefing to release its new study Teacher Advancement Initiatives: Lessons Learned From Eight Case Studies. Completed in conjunction with Pearson, the report is the product of a 3-year study of schools and districts with established career advancement initiatives. The study identifies components of successful, sustainable teacher career continuums with positive impacts on teacher recruitment, retention, and job satisfaction.
The eight case studies include schools and districts in urban and rural areas of Arizona, California, Colorado, the District of Columbia, Iowa, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Washington. The report identifies key elements of effective career continuums such as structured roles for teacher leaders, opportunities for release time and collaboration, compensation differentiation, peer coaching and evaluation, embedded professional development, and structured opportunities for teacher voice in decision making.
The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.
Teacher education is entering an exciting era. Scholars and practitioners alike are calling for teachers to be educated differently (AACTE, 2010; CCSSO, 2015; NCATE, 2010), which means that the way we prepare teachers and the way we support teachers’ ongoing professional development must change. In lieu of one-size-fits-all, “sit and get” training sessions, teachers’ professional development must be ongoing, differentiated, sustained, and rooted in issues that they face on a daily basis. Such is the experience for the teachers of Mort Elementary School in Hillsborough County Public Schools (the 8th largest school district in the United States) who participate in the Mort Teacher Leader Academy (MTLA).