The US Department of Education recently unveiled the Excellent Educators for All Initiative, which strives to make sure “all children have access to a high quality education regardless of their race, zip code or family income.” Dwight Davis, a Teach Plus Alum, was on hand to participate in a panel discussion with US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, after which he was able to sit down to lunch with President Obama to share his thoughts.
To support this initiative, Secretary Duncan plans to work with educators to focus on recruiting, supporting and retaining effective teachers. He described T3 as a great example of this: “In Boston, the district is partnering with Teach Plus to recruit and support and retain teams of effective, experienced teachers, and results for students have been pretty profound.” Teach Plus was the first organization to track and report data on teacher retention and since then, many cities have called on their local leaders to do the same.
Davis believes he has succeeded as a teacher because of three key factors: relationships, professional development and collaboration.
Relationships with both students and parents as well as the community at large are very important. Davis adds, “we have to look at what happens if we fill high-needs schools with individuals who understand great instruction but fail to value and appreciate the context of the community they serve.”
Professional development, such as conferences or fellowships, equip teachers to handle different situations the students may be dealing with.
Collaboration with both new and experienced teachers is an asset to any teacher. It’s a great way to share strategies and experiences to enhance each other’s approach to teaching and to dealing with students from different backgrounds.
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