What do you see as major opportunities for teachers to lead the revolution in leadership from the classroom?

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8 Comments
  1. Ernie Rambo

    It’s been a pleasure to read the replies above mine. Hearing from others motivates me to continue pushing forward and introducing/modeling teacher leadership where I used to teach! I’m concerned with how administrators see teacher leadership as either coaches/mentors or as conduits to pass information on to other teachers.
    I’d like to see teacher leaders sharing more with administrators about additional roles that teacher leaders can take on. In my large school district, student achievement data is handed to us with directional plans already attached. A teacher leader could take that data and facilitate discussions with colleagues regarding how their instruction may have impacted that data and what directions they’d like to take in reference to student data. Instead of just listening to teachers’ frustrations with the daily grind, a teacher leader can initiate discussion and actions to solve problems – demonstrating that teachers don’t have to accept conditions as they are. Teacher leaders can model and encourage their colleagues to pursue action research, to survey educational research, and publish findings of research conducted at their schools. Teacher leaders can initiate and sustain conversations with specialists and support staff to broaden the communication avenues at their schools, between schools, and across the nation.

    I think the one thing missing from many teachers’ toolboxes is the understanding that they don’t have to accept the weaknesses in our education systems. I see teacher leaders as the catalysts to help other teachers bring their ideas to action.

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  2. Elaine Simos

    Beth raised an important point about keeping teachers in the profession through increased access to leadership opportunities. In 2016, Linda Darling-Hammond noted that 8% of pre-retirement teachers leave the profession each year; that number is especially concerning given the overall decrease in enrollment in teacher education programs in the last five years. Building teacher agency could be a key factor in reversing some of those trends.

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  3. KRISCIA CABRAL

    Teachers are becoming leaders from the inside out because of the many platforms and opportunities that are now available. I believe Beth stated it best, teachers have so many ways to let their voice be heard. As a collective group, teachers value teachers and want to hear from those that are in the trenches, experiencing it all and making connection to real world happenings.

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  4. KRISCIA CABRAL

    Teachers are becoming leaders from the inside out because of the many platforms and opportunities that are now available. I believe Beth stated it best, teachers have so many ways to let their voice be heard. As a collective group, teachers value teachers and want to hear from those that are in the trenches, experiencing it all and making connection to real world happenings.

    Reply

  5. Joanna Schimizzi

    I think that teachers can lead from the classroom by communicating with their administration about their interests. Often administrators need support, but they may not be aware that a teacher has an interest in mentoring new teachers, writing curriculum, being involved in literacy initiatives, etc. If teachers are able to have frequent and honest discussions with administrators about how teachers are interested in growing themselves and their schools, great leadership opportunities could be mutually beneficial. It does require honesty and creativity from both sides. I’ve experienced this in really wonderful ways when administrators truly leveraged my potential and interests.

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  6. Angela Schoon

    Teaching Partners is right on target here. Teachers are busy and often need to network from the comfort of their own home after the school day ends.

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  7. Christopher Bronke

    I totally agree with Beth on this one and have worked to try to find pathways for the teachers in the department I lead to have these opportunities. I have also been thinking a lot lately about the “business side” of education. Given all of the politics with public education right now and possible directions (more charters, vouchers, etc.) that we could be heading, I think there is some sort of emerging need for teachers to better understand business. Personally, I have thougth about getting an MBA to better help me know if my assertion has any merit and then to better help me think about what sort of pathway this could be for teacher leaders. I know this is vague at best, but that has been on my mind a lot in the last year or two.

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  8. Beth Maloney

    One opportunity I see is interest in leading from the classroom. In the past, it seemed as though if you wanted to stay in the field as a leader, moving to administration was your only option. Now, more and more teachers seem to see the benefit in “leading from the middle” and more teachers may be retained in our field if given more opportunities to lead from inside the classroom. Momentum could be an opportunity! We need to spread the word about what it means to lead from the middle. Writing/blogging/vlogging could be a huge opportunity here, as more and more teachers build their Virtual Learning Networks and we can learn from each other.
    Another opportunity could be the pursuit of National Board Certification. Gaining my certification has helped me grow as a teacher leader and reinforced my commitment as a professional teacher. It has helped me to network with accomplished teachers across my state and the nation who are also committed to leading from the middle.

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