The #iaedchat last night focused on Teacher-Leaders and their roles in our districts. The discussion was pretty amazing. Some of the questions that were posed:
What does Teacher Leadership look like in your district?
What are the foundational elements that must be in place to sustain teacher leadership
Share an example of how teacher leadership is impacting your district.
If you could change one thing within your teacher leadership system, please explain what it would be and why
We collect all kinds of data to show improvement. Most ties back to our assessment wall that drives decision making
How do the teacher leader and principal roles differ in your school?
What steps can you take tomorrow to increase/improve teacher leadership across your school and district?
The conversations obviously centered on the questions, but what was one resounding theme? Building relationships of trust and communication with other teachers. Just because we are Teacher-Leaders does not mean that we don’t have other teachers serving in a leadership capacity. We need to continue to encouraging those that might not think they are leadership material to grow in their instructional practice.
It is also vital that we as Teacher-Leaders continue to grow in our own instructional practice. By no means are we perfect – I am definitely far from it! We, too, should always continue to seek out good instructional practices that help us to model it for our colleagues.
Being in a leadership role can sometimes be tough. There are lots of skeptics out there that think leadership should only come from administration. Fortunately we are in a profession where leadership skills are valued, especially now that we have the TLC program, and through that program have helped teachers reach their fullest potential in their classrooms. It could be as simple as trying a different strategy with a lesson to as far as “flipping their classroom” using technology and other resources. How do we do that? With this program not being evaluative we take the “perceived threat” away. Lots of colleague to colleague encouragement happens in its place.
Final thoughts? TLC has brought many teachers out of their ruts, that some didn’t even know they were in, and challenged them to become even better in their instructional practices. It has many, many benefits if people give it a chance!