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By: Guest Blogger
A definite highlight of my teaching career also was spent on tennis courts coaching our student athletes and making positive connections with students. A fundamental rule for any tennis player is to stay out of “no man’s land”; the area between the baseline and the service line of a tennis court.
So, the goal is to either stay back at the baseline or play near the net. Getting caught in the middle makes for hard shots and being less able to get to the ball. As a coach, I saw players hesitate when making their move from the baseline to the net. They stop in the middle convincing themselves it is safe, while they wait for another opportunity to advance. Instead, great tennis players realize that when you want to move forward, you have to commit and move with intentionality, or you’ll get stuck in no man’s land.
The same goes in leadership: when you commit, make your move forward and don’t get caught in no man’s land. To help you stay out of the middle, consider these four But Nots to staying out of no man’s land:
But Not #1: Being in a meeting but not speaking up.
Meetings are a chance to learn, clarify, communicate, dialogue and discuss. For whatever reason, it’s natural to make excuses not to speak up and share your opinion, point of view or question. By being in the meeting, make it your mission to be an active contributor. Avoid the parking lot conversations or meetings after the meeting. Commit to using your voice to share your experience, insights and point of view to help the team make the best decision for students.
But Not #2: Taking a leadership position but not taking ownership.
Regardless of whether you have a formal title or not, we are all leaders in our areas. At some point, we have to own our responsibility in the decision, the action or helping to solve a problem or need. There’s also a tendency to delegate things that might be out of our comfort zone. While we can’t be the expert at all things, it should still be our goal to learn and grow. Commit to take ownership of decisions and areas in which you work to make it better for students.
But Not #3: Managing issues but not leading others.
It’s easy to quickly get caught in the role of putting out the fires that seem to come up constantly. The same can be said about filling time just responding to emails that come at all hours of the day and night. While emails and responding to issues will never go away, the real work is in moving forward to proactive action. Commit to being proactive in developing and leading your team by addressing areas that support and grow all students.
But Not #4: Talking about changes but not executing them.
There’s a doom-loop mentality when we create meetings to plan for the meeting to plan for the meeting. T-shirts and posters fill our schools with positive affirmations and slogans that bring power and energy for change to take place. Yet, when action is necessary, there seems to be a void or disconnect between the conversations and the action. While gathering input and ensuring clarity is crucial before you can make decisions, it’s easy to get caught on the baseline, unable to move forward. Commit to making plans in how decisions will be made and communicated.
Tennis players playing out a point at the net is the most exciting. The game is fast-paced, and the reaction time to respond is even quicker. To get to the net, the player had to have made the commitment to run through no man’s land. Once the decision was made to leave the baseline, doubt and uncertainty had to be extinguished. Leaders making decisions to move forward have to possess that same unwavering commitment. The next time you decide to make your move, watch out for the “but not” trap in no man’s land.
Neil Gupta, Ed. D. is the director of Secondary Education for Worthington City Schools. He oversees middle school and high school programs and leads the academic and safety work with the building principals. You can read Dr. Gupta's full bio and his blog here.
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By: Staff Blogger
Viewing back-to-school commercials certainly conjures up a lot of emotions in teachers. We always feel like summer slipped through our fingers so quickly. If we worked or attended professional development in the summer, we wonder if we should have rested more. Summer certainly should be a time for teachers to regroup, reevaluate, pursue hobbies and rejuvenate for another year in the classroom. After all, our journeys as teachers can be emotional, frustrating, bumpy and difficult, but we persevere because we are TEACHERS.
Whether you have just begun your first year or your 31st year in the classroom, I hope you always remember how important a teacher’s role is in our society. Being a teacher requires stamina, intelligence, collaboration, creativity, patience, hope and a proclivity to nurture the intellectual and social-emotional growth of our students. Teachers know and understand that there is great power when our students find and express their identities and use their collective voices to create change.
For many of our students, we are called to be more than just teachers. We must be advocates, superheroes, champions or beacons of light filtering through the storm on a rainy day. As the years pass, you may not remember every student’s name, but they will always remember you. Your words and actions do matter to your students. You matter. We could never fathom how far our influence on a student may reach. We could never fathom how one statement, one compliment or one word of advice could ultimately alter the course of their lives.
For the first time in my 24-year career as a history teacher in Toledo Public Schools, I am not with my beloved students in my classroom nor am I with my close colleagues and friends on a daily basis. I already miss them. This school year, I am embarking on a journey as the first teacher fellow at the Ohio Department of Education. I am excited and extremely thankful for this opportunity, but my students will always be first in my heart and mind. I will set forth on this teacher fellow journey determined to be an advocate for teachers and students — not just in my classroom and district but throughout the state.
I truly believe teachers are one of the greatest assets and gifts in American society today. We have the passion and ability to shape the hearts and minds of our students. This responsibility is unique to teaching and is unmatched in any other profession on earth. I hope you were able reflect on this fact over the summer and keep it at the front of your mind this school year — even during challenging days. I wish you all a peaceful and fruitful beginning to your school year.
Mona Al-Hayani was named the 2019 Ohio Teacher of the Year and is taking a year sabbatical from teaching history at Toledo Early College High School to work with the Department as the first OhioTeacher Fellow. You can contact Mona at Mona.Al-Hayani@education.ohio.gov.
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By: Jonathan Juravich
One year ago, a proposal was on the table to transform the Ohio Teacher of the Year program from a one-year experience to a two-year commitment. The first year would be one of recognition and learning, followed by a year of service to the state as the Ohio teacher-in-residence. I was hesitant. What would life outside of my classroom look like? Would I be bored, spinning around in a chair all day? Was I even capable of living up to everyone’s expectations? Twelve months later, I am wrapping up my time piloting this program and dizzied from a year of growth and inspiration.
I was having lunch with a group of teachers this spring, and one of them asked me what I actually do in this role. I answered saying, “I focus on teacher voice, teacher leadership and teacher recognition.” She then said that this was all well and good but wanted to know more details. What was it that I was actually doing?
During this past year, I have toured the state, meeting with teachers, administrators and students while learning about their schools, aspirations and communities. Sometimes I offered professional development for teachers, spoke at conferences, led whole-school student assemblies or provided hot chocolate to teachers at staff meetings. Then, I brought all of these experiences and the information I learned from my visits back to the Department to help provide Department staff with insight from the field and context for decision-making.
In April, I testified to the Primary and Secondary Education Committee of the Ohio House of Representatives. One of the members of this committee asked me to reflect on what it is that I heard from teachers when I visited schools. I noted how inspired I was by Ohio’s educators, their professionalism and their heart. These teachers spoke of their admiration for their students and the strength of their colleagues down the hall that, in their words, I “just had to stop in and see before leaving.”
This year, I was motivated by great teachers like the enthusiastic Chris Basich in Riverside Local Schools; by the heart of third grade teacher Devery Scott from Whitehall City Schools; Chris Williams and the remarkable staff at Colerain Elementary School in Columbus; the thought-provoking conversations with Cheshire Elementary’s Mikela Thomas; and the creativity of Terry Stewart at the Ohio School for the Deaf. Meeting these teachers and countless more, hearing their stories, their hopes for their students and the triumphs they had just recently witnessed have changed who I am as an educator.
In one of my first meetings at the Department, I was told there was interest in an additional teacher recognition program. Through hard work and lots of collaboration, the TORCH (Teachers of Ohio Representing Character and Heart) recognition was rolled out this winter. In its inaugural year, TORCH recognizes teachers for their engagement with the community and advancement of educational equity. Five honorees from across the state were selected and recognized during surprise events this spring. I am honored to have met Tequila Pennington-Calwise of Cleveland Metro Schools, Leila Kubesch from Norwood City Schools, Sylvania’s Tami Blue, Sarah Thornburg of Columbus City Schools, and Alicia Spears from the Tri-State STEM+M Early College High School. These teachers strive to teach the whole child and every child. I, for one, cannot wait to hear about the teachers that will be recognized through this program in the future, for their service-centered lives.
Honestly, what I am most excited about is the future of the teacher-in-residence program and how it will continue even when I am gone. I am thrilled to see how future Ohio Teachers of the Year will put their own unique spin on engaging educators to use their voices, advance leadership, and recognize the goodness in one another. When I am back in my art room at Liberty Tree Elementary School this fall, I know that Mona Al-Hayani, the 2019 Ohio Teacher of the Year, will be stepping into this role, rebranded as the Ohio Teacher Fellowship. She will bring professionalism and passion to her work, advocating for all of Ohio’s teachers and students.
On my last full day as the Ohio teacher-in-residence, the Department hosted the first-ever Teacher Leadership Summit at The Ohio State University. Two hundred teacher leaders and administrators came from across the state to join Department staff and share in a day of learning and inspiration that had taken most of the year to plan. Many of the amazing people I met over the past few months were there, making connections with one another and filling the room with energy. As the morning opened, I stood on the stage looking out at faces I had not known a year prior and the table of staff members from my own school. These colleagues, both the familiar and the new, had become a part of the journey. I stood there at the summit realizing that this year-long adventure, this metaphoric summit, was only the beginning for me…for all of us. There are new mountains and challenges to take on in the quest to advance teacher voices, leadership and recognition. How incredibly grateful I am for the opportunity to have represented the amazing educators of Ohio in this work as the teacher-in-residence.
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By: Cassandra Palsgrove
Ohio is an amazing place to live, partly because it also is a great place to work. As we move closer to graduation season, we are reminded that students across Ohio are making important decisions about their futures. The learning experiences, exposure and relationships they have built throughout their educational journeys inevitably influence those decisions.
Beyond graduation, students have many opportunities. Ohio’s One Goal for Education in Each Child, Our Future is to increase annually the percentage of its high school graduates who, one year after graduation, are:
- Enrolled and succeeding in a post-high school learning experience, including an adult career-technical education program, an apprenticeship, or a two-year or four-year college program;
- Serving in a military branch;
- Earning a living wage; or
- Engaged in a meaningful, self-sustaining vocation.
As students are making their decisions about what is next, it’s important to know that Ohio's manufacturing industry leads the country in production of plastics and rubber, fabricated metals and electrical equipment. Our state’s agricultural industry covers 13.9 million acres of land and leads the nation in the production of swiss cheese. We also are home to great careers in other major industries including information technology, transportation and trade, business services, real estate, education and health. Fortune 500 companies headquartered in Ohio include Cardinal Health, Nationwide, Marathon Petroleum, Macy’s, Procter & Gamble and Kroger.
What do these stats about Ohio’s economy have to do with school? It’s important for us as educators to understand how the role we play contributes to the economic viability of our state. Educators help develop students who have foundational and well-rounded content knowledge and skills and are strong communicators, creative, and collaborative individuals who will contribute to our state’s growing economy.
In-Demand Jobs Week is an opportunity to engage and inspire those students. It also is an opportunity to help younger students begin developing career interests, so they can explore pathways toward these interests while they are still in school. During In-Demand Jobs Week, we encourage communities to partner and plan events and activities that will inspire students and job seekers.
Wait, what are In-Demand Jobs? In-demand jobs are those that pay a sustainable wage and offer a promising future based on the projected number of openings and growth. Ohio has in-demand jobs in more than 200 occupations across a wide range of industries. Ohio’s In-Demand Jobs List is developed and updated using labor market information, job postings on OhioMeansJobs.com, JobsOhio regional forecasts and employer forecasts.
As educators, we can help students and their families make informed choices about their futures by having conversations about these opportunities. Using the In-Demand Jobs resources and data provides us a common way to communicate about professions available in Ohio.
In-Demand Jobs Week is an opportunity to increase student career exposure and provide experiential learning and engagement about careers. My role at the Ohio Department of Education includes strengthening business and education partnerships across our state. This includes developing resources for schools to provide students early opportunities to experience careers. To get started, look at our In-Demand Jobs Week classroom toolkit. This toolkit houses simple activities that can jumpstart these opportunities for students!
Coming from the classroom, I have seen firsthand the significant influence teachers have in the career choices of their students. We must more closely embrace this important role we play. Our students need positive mentors who are willing to help guide them through this important choice they are making about their futures. We also can help them decide what education and training pathways they take to get there.
As educators, we have many responsibilities. We are asked to teach, supervise and support the academic and technical content that students are charged with knowing and performing. We make sure they are safe at lunch and on the playground. We are asked to ensure that parents and guardians are well informed. We volunteer for after-school events and manage extracurricular activities.
It is easy to think of providing career awareness, exposure and planning activities for students as “just one more thing” and in some respects — it is. But I suspect that helping students make an informed choice about their futures, and preparing them to take those next steps, is at least partially what attracted us to this profession in the first place.
Career advising is worthwhile and rewarding and can be an excellent way to get to know what motivates the students in your classroom. This is no easy feat, and luckily there are many online career planning systems that can assist students, parents, guardians and educators in thoughtful career advising. Ohio's no-cost, career planning system is OhioMeansJobs.com. The K-12 backpack function allows students to learn more about their career interests and in-demand jobs, build résumés, take practice ACT and WorkKeys assessments, search for college and training programs, create a budget based on future expenses, and develop meaningful academic and career plans for high school and beyond.
Want to hear from other schools and districts doing this work? Come check out our Career Connections conference on July 29. Want even more resources on how schools and businesses can partner to provide students with more opportunities to get a head start on their futures? Visit SuccessBound.Ohio.gov.
I look forward to continuing this conversation with you! Let’s connect on Twitter @cpalsgrove, or you can email me at Cassandra.email@example.com.
Happy In-Demand Jobs Week!
Cassandra Palsgrove works in the Center for Teaching, Leading and Learning. She oversees programs that help connect Ohio’s business and education sectors, including Ohio’s Career Connections and SuccessBound programs. You can read more about Cassandra by clicking here.
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By: Kimberly Monachino
Editor's note: March is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. We thought this was the perfect time to re-run this March 8, 2018 blog about making learning accessible to all students.
Today’s classrooms are very busy places. They are filled with students who have diverse needs and learning challenges. To meet their needs, teachers may be equipped with a variety of instructional strategies and have many other tools in their tool boxes. However, even with multiple tools, trying to meet the unique needs of each individual child sometimes can feel daunting.
One approach that can help teachers customize the curriculum to meet the needs of all learners is Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Universal Design for Learning originated with the term universal design. Originally, universal design meant creating products and environments that are accessible to individuals with disabilities. Automatic doors, closed captions, ramps and curb cuts are all universal designs. These modifications assist people with disabilities, but individuals without disabilities also benefit from these adaptations. For example, automatic doors make entering a building easier if you use a wheelchair or if you can walk but are carrying several bags of groceries.
We know that every learner is unique, and one size doesn’t fit all. The Universal Design for Learning structure is research based and aims to change the design of classrooms, school practices and coursework rather than change each unique learner. It minimizes barriers and maximizes learning no matter what a student’s ability, disability, age, gender or cultural background might be. It reduces obstacles to learning and provides appropriate accommodations and supports. It does all of this while keeping expectations high for all students. Universal Design for Learning makes it possible for all learners to engage in meaningful learning by making sure everyone understands what is being taught. Coursework developed following Universal Design for Learning is flexible — the goals, methods, materials and assessments consider the full range of each learner’s needs.
In a Universal Design for Learning classroom, students have goals and are aware of what they are working to achieve. To accomplish this, the teacher might post goals for specific lessons in the classroom. Students also might write down lesson goals in their notebooks. The teacher refers to lesson goals during the lesson itself. In a traditional classroom, there only may be one way for a student to complete an assignment. This might be an essay or a worksheet. With Universal Design for Learning, there are multiple options. For instance, students can create a podcast or a video to show what they know. They may be allowed to draw a comic strip. There are a wide range of possibilities for completing assignments, as long as students meet the lesson goals. With Universal Design for Learning, teachers give students feedback about how they are doing with lesson goals. Students reflect on their learning and think about their progress toward the goals. If they did not meet the goals, the teachers encourage students to think about what they could do differently next time.
The three major ideas in the Universal Design for Learning structure are:
- Multiple means of representation is showing or presenting the information in different ways to the learners. For example, students with sensory disabilities (e.g., blindness or deafness); learning disabilities (e.g., dyslexia); language or cultural differences, and others may need information presented in different ways. So, instead of the teacher having all the students read from a textbook or only using printed text, there are options for students based on how they best learn. Some students prefer to listen to a recording of the textbook, use pictures to understand the print or use a computer.
- Multiple means of action and expression means providing opportunities for learners to demonstrate their knowledge in alternative ways. For example, when the teacher gives students options to “show what they know” beyond paper and pencil tests. The students show their understanding by creating something such as a poster, making a PowerPoint presentation, writing a poem or making a TV or radio commercial.
- Multiple means of engagement is discovering learners’ interests and motivating them to learn. When teachers take the extra time to learn about their students’ personal interests and make learning relevant to their experiences, students often become more engaged. For example, the teacher who knows her students are excited about sports and incorporates those interests into reading and math activities.
You can find detailed information about these three principles here.
The National Center on Universal Design for Learning is a great resource for people who want to learn more about this topic. Additionally, you can explore the Universal Design for Learning guidelines here. These guidelines offer a set of practical suggestions that can ensure all learners can access and participate in meaningful, challenging learning opportunities.
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By: Jonathan Juravich
Editor’s Note: During the Ohio Teacher of the Year selection process, outstanding educators from each of the 11 State Board of Education districts are chosen to be District Teachers of the Year. Finalists for the Ohio Teacher of the Year will be selected from these 11 honorees. Ultimately, only one will become the Ohio Teacher of the Year. This person is then in the running to be the National Teacher of the Year.
As the nomination window for the 2020 Ohio Teacher of the Year opens, 2018 Teacher of the Year Jonathan Juravich invited Bre Sambuchino, a 2019 Ohio Teacher of the Year finalist, to help him write this blog. Below, Jonathan and Bre share how their respective recognitions have impacted their careers and lives. They also invite you to nominate an outstanding teacher for this honor.
Jonathan Juravich, 2018 Ohio Teacher of the Year
To be named the 2018 Ohio Teacher of the Year set into motion the most remarkable year and a half of my life. To be honest, I will never be the same again. I have realized that I have become a stronger version of myself. I am confident in sharing my perspective and my experiences in the classroom. I have learned what true leadership can be and how sometimes sitting back and actually listening to someone else can mean so much more than being the loudest voice in the room. I have learned that Ohio Teacher of the Year is so much more than a title, it is an opportunity, a responsibility and full of possibilities.
Right before the announcement was made of my recognition, I was on a conference call with previous honorees. One of them said, “You are going to join the most incredible professional network of people when you meet the other state teachers of the year.” I remember rolling my eyes. Really? Another network of educators? I think I’m okay. And then I met the 54 other state Teachers of the Year and realized this was so much more than a professional network. This group of educators has so many things in common with me — they process the same struggles, challenge me to think bigger, are there when I need someone to listen and have opened my eyes to gratitude. They have become my close friends.
Together, we have had once-in-a-lifetime experiences. We explored Google’s campus, shared our experiences with Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, toured the White House, attended Space Camp and stood on the field during the national anthem at the National Championship football game. And the adventures continue. Then, there was that day I stood on the TED stage in New York City, telling the stories of my students, my daughter and my grandmother to fellow teachers in the audience.
Throughout these experiences, I was very cognizant that I was representing Ohio and the excellent educators of our state. I knew when I saw something amazing or experienced excellent professional learning, it was my job to share it with the people who needed it. And now, piloting the teacher-in-residence position at the Ohio Department of Education, I have had the opportunity to meet and celebrate some of the most remarkable educators across our state.
This experience has led me to dream big and believe in possibilities — possibilities for my students, for education and for myself.
Bre Sambuchino, 2019 Ohio Teacher of the Year Finalist
I remember the day when my superintendent walked in my class with flowers in hand. I was teaching Education Principles. This is a class for seniors who wish to become teachers, and they are absolutely delightful — a joy, really. She came in and explained she had just submitted my name for Ohio Teacher of the Year. The students in the class were enthralled. They wanted to know everything and asked, “So, what is next?” “When will she know?” “How can we help?” I remember thinking they were being so sweet, but I was pretty sure my road was going to end that day because I knew of all the amazing teachers that were in my building — let alone the state of Ohio.
They asked for a group hug. Yes, a hug. Senior students were hugging it out. I thought, “Maybe I did teach them something.” As the instructor for our school’s Teaching Professions Academy, my motto is to do all things with grace and love.
The Ohio Teacher of the Year process continued and was challenging at times. I was juggling a lot of life changes at the same time as I was preparing for my presentation and writing my essays. However, the process gave me the opportunity to reflect on my life and, for that, I am grateful. When all the essays were written, I realized I like building and creating things. Almost everything I had been recognized for had been for creating something that had not existed previously.
The process gave me confidence, which gave me grace. It gave me the opportunity to say, “What is next?” Since then, I have volunteered with the St. Vincent de Paul Retrofittings Committee, and I recently met with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society about becoming involved in their work. I love working on teams, building things and creating anew.
In the classroom, the Ohio Teacher of the Year process has solidified the passion I have for my vocation. I know I am meant to be an educator. I love what I do and am grateful for each day. I love modeling grace and love, and I know I am where I am meant to be.
Our challenge is for school administrators, community members, parents, students and fellow educators to nominate an outstanding teacher for the Ohio Teacher of the Year program. Excellent teachers open doors to opportunities for students. In turn, excellent teachers deserve to have doors opened for them.
Jonathan Juravich is the 2018 Ohio Teacher of the Year, was a finalist for National Teacher of the Year and serves as the Ohio Department of Education’s teacher-in-residence.
<Bre Sambuchino is the State Board District 4 Teacher of the Year and was a finalist for 2019 Ohio Teacher of the Year. She teaches in Loveland City School District.
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By: Kimberly Monachino
We hear the term student engagement quite a bit, but what does that mean in the classroom and how is it done? Student engagement refers to the degree of attention, curiosity, interest, optimism and passion students show when they are learning or being taught. This extends to their levels of motivation to learn and progress in their education. To create high levels of student engagement, teachers craft lessons that focus on student-driven inquiry and create learning environments that challenge students to actively research, investigate and collaborate. Students have multiple options to demonstrate their mastery of both content and skills. Simply stated: the students are actively participating in their learning, not passive bystanders.
As Benjamin Franklin stated, “Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” This quote speaks to the power of student engagement. We know that the more students are engaged, the more learning occurs. So, how do we create classrooms with high levels of student engagement?
Here are several ways to increase the amount of time students are engaged.
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- Make the lesson meaningful and real. Have the students incorporate their experiences, interests and knowledge.
- Give students choice. Empower the students to make choices on their assignments (for example, tic-tac-toe style boards that offer choices of activities).
- Use the 10:2 method. For every 10 minutes of instruction, allow the students two minutes to process and respond to the instruction or reading material. This can be done in various ways: have them write about what they learned or read, have them ask or write down questions they have about what they read or learned, or have students discuss the lesson or reading material with partners.
- Incorporate movement into your lessons. Require students to respond to a question about a reading passage or lesson by moving to a certain spot in the room, writing on whiteboards or standing (or sitting) when they are done thinking about the question.
- Embrace collaborative learning. By teaching students to work together, they learn how to problem-solve, think critically, improve social interactions and develop communication skills.
- Allow students five to seven seconds of ‘think time’ when asking a question about a story or reading passage. At the end of the time, draw a random name to answer the question.
- At the end of a lesson, have students use the 3-2-1 method of summarizing. In this method, students record three things they learned, two interesting things and one question they have about what was taught or read. Allow time for them to share their findings with peers.
- Take a moment to pause. Periodically pause mid-sentence when teaching and require students to fill in the blanks.
- Establish positive teacher-student relationships. Students need to feel safe in their classrooms. They need to know they can take risks and make mistakes in their learning.
- Remember your role as a teacher. Remember that the goal of engagement in the classroom is to change from being a teacher who is the sage on the stage to one who is the guide on the side.
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.
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By: Staff Blogger
Increasing the number of highly effective teachers and leaders is one of 10 strategies set forth in Each Child, Our Future – Ohio’s Strategic Plan for Education. The educators at John Foster Dulles Elementary personify this strategy with their exceptional commitment to students and social-emotional learning. Supporting the whole child is at the center of Each Child, Our Future and at the heart of this learning community’s culture of caring. Dulles was named a 2018 National Blue Ribbon School for their focus on continuous improvement and preparing all students for success. In addition, the U.S. Department of Education presented Elizabeth Riesenberger, Dulles Elementary principal, with the Terrel H. Bell award for outstanding leadership. State Superintendent Paolo DeMaria visited the Oak Hills Local School District in Cincinnati on Feb. 8 to see the incredible learning connections Dulles Elementary educators create for students.
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By: Staff Blogger
Central Elementary School educators shine a spotlight on improvement with their focus on foundational knowledge and skills, one of the four learning domains critical to the success of students. This focus, showcased in Each Child, Our Future and connected to its accountability system, is one of the reasons the school was recognized as a High Progress School of Honor for 2018. On Jan. 11, State Superintendent Paolo DeMaria visited Central Elementary, in the Logan-Hocking School District, to meet this community of caring educators and staff.
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Last Modified: 5/17/2019 3:20:37 PM