06 February 2015

Raising the Voices of Teachers and Students

When I left the public high school classroom six years ago last month, I made a promise to myself to keep in touch with teachers and students and to advocate for their voices to be heard more frequently.  After all, a consistent lack of respect for teachers as professionals, a constant demand to practice for tests, and the lack of time for my family were three of the reasons I grew weary and needed a change from my role as a high school English and Arts & Humanities teacher.

In my blog post about why I left the classroom, I referenced the way I thought often about being back in the classroom because previously I knew no better way to impact education than by teaching students myself. Through the support of mentors and colleagues, I have shifted my understanding in recent months to consider how I can impact public education from outside the classroom by elevating teachers' voices, and one of the ways I do this is through blogging and through encouraging teachers to blog.

In November of 2014 Teaching Channel invited me to blog for them on the topic of teacher leadership. What I enjoyed most about that post were the anecdotal stories and quotes by fellow educators from around the USA. You can read the full post here.

In Kentucky, our movement around teacher leadership continues to grow as teachers throughout the state step forward and let their voices be heard. In preparation for an Elevating and Celebrating Effective Teachers and Teaching (ECET2) event hosted by the organization for which I work, I wrote a blog post explaining why we support teacher leadership as an organization. You can read that post in its entirety here.

Truly, there is no better time to be supporting teachers as professionals. By working together with classroom teachers we can change the experiences for all the students in our state and our country.