Nearly four in 10 teachers report that they are interested in combining their classroom work with other roles or responsibilities in their school or district, including 46 percent of teachers with five or fewer years of experience. Across the country, interest is increasing in alternative approaches to school staffing that provide more flexible work roles and advancement opportunities for highly effective teachers-both as a means to recognize and retain teachers in hard-to-staff schools, and to allow the best teachers to have a positive impact on larger numbers of students.
In a new report, from the Center for American Progress, authors Kowal and Brinson profile two organizations-a small charter management organization based in California and a large school district in Virginia-that have recently pursued staffing innovations designed with these goals in mind.
The authors recommend that education leaders implement lessons learned from early adopters by:
- Extending teachers’ reach beyond traditional classroom boundaries, through redesigns of both organizational structures and job responsibilities that enable great teachers to directly or indirectly reach larger number of students beyond their classroom walls
- Considering teachers’ individual strengths and weaknesses, as well as their overall effectiveness in improving student learning, when conceiving and designing new work roles
- Designing roles with both students’ and teachers’ interests in mind, including a clear path between new roles for teachers and the student learning gains they want to achieve
- Ensuring long-term financial sustainability for what is too often an add-on program by keeping costs in mind from the start
- Challenging traditional expectations by embarking on a campaign with teachers, administrators, and other stakeholders to clarify the changes to teachers’ daily roles and demonstrate the benefits of innovation in this realm for both teachers and students
To view the report, see: http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2011/04/staffing_models.html
Core Education is invested in the design of career lattice options for educators that allow experienced teachers to expand their influence beyond the classroom, while maintaining their direct work with children. For more information about our services, see www.CoreEducationLLC.com