Educator Talent and Experience… Why It Matters and How to Build Upon It
By: Julia Simmerer
Editor’s Note: Cheryl Krohn helped author this blog. Cheryl is the strategic administrator in the Department’s Center for Teaching, Leading and Learning. You can contact Cheryl here.
Imagine a student who, year after year, has teachers in their first year of teaching. Novice teachers often are less effective than their more experienced peers, which can negatively impact outcomes for students. This impact compounds when students repeatedly have inexperienced teachers. Ohio’s students of color and economically disadvantaged students are twice as likely as other students to have first- or second-year teachers. This is one example of the inequity that many Ohio students experience and the Department addresses in Ohio’s 2015 Educator Equity Plan.
Ohio’s strategic plan for education, Each Child, Our Future, defines equity as ensuring “each child has access to relevant and challenging academic experiences and educational resources necessary for success across race, gender, ethnicity, language, disability, family background and/or income.” Every school day, we want students throughout Ohio to have educators who challenge, prepare and empower them. All school staff members have the ability to positively impact students’ learning experiences, but — as the strategic plan notes — “highly effective teachers and instructional practices are at the heart of student learning.”
To help schools and districts address equity gaps and other challenges, Each Child, Our Future emphasizes a shift in policy and practice to focus on supports and services for students. One key to ensuring each child has equitable access to excellent educators is to systematically change the way we engage in human capital management. Human capital is the value employees bring to an organization because of their knowledge, skills, abilities and experiences. Schools and districts need to reimagine human capital practices to help build the educator talent in schools to meet each student’s needs. This requires recognizing that the responsibility for human capital in schools goes beyond the human resources office to seeing it as a central function of the system at many levels. It also means moving beyond the isolated policies and actions to a comprehensive approach of attracting and keeping educator talent. The Center for Teaching, Leading and Learning is deepening its support to schools and districts in this area by launching a new website, The Human Capital Resource Center.
Resources to attract, hire and support excellent educators in Ohio
The Human Capital Resource Center website helps schools and districts establish comprehensive approaches to human capital management and includes a variety of tools to help schools make decisions about attracting, hiring and supporting excellent educators. To explore the resources and learn more, visit www.ohiohcrc.org.
The Ohio Human Capital Resource Center highlights four key areas:
- Attract & Prepare helps fill Ohio’s pipeline of future educators with people who are properly prepared for the realities and rewards of the profession. There is a focus on exploring careers in education.
- Recruit & Hire refines schools’ and districts’ recruitment and hiring practices to address current and future staffing needs, so each child in Ohio has excellent educators. Here the focus is on educator recruitment.
- Support & Grow recommends ways that school and district leaders can develop and manage talent. The focus is on mentoring for all educators and supporting educator professional conduct.
- Engage & Reward shares strategies for establishing a culture that engages stakeholder voices, maintains transparency, fosters collaboration and recognizes exemplary service — all of which improve recruitment and retention. Here the focus is on educator recognition.
The Human Capital Resource Center will continue to expand and evolve to provide more resources that support schools’ and districts’ efforts to ensure each child has access to excellent educators.
Julia Simmerer is senior executive director of the Center for the Teaching, Leading and Learning at the Ohio Department of Education. You can learn more about Julia by clicking here.