"Teaching is About Relationships"

Bill Gates and the Teacher of the Year discuss current topics of education including teacher leadership.

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I came across this blog at the beginning of the school year and immediately started sharing it.  Much of it echoes or expands upon conversations I've had about teaching.  The part that struck me the most at the time was where Lyon Terry (2015 Teacher of the Year) talks about teacher leadership.  

"“People will say to me, ‘So when are you going to be a principal?’ because that’s kind of the next thing,” Lyon said. “But that’s not really my skill set.”

Seattle is trying to solve this problem by allowing the best teachers to keep teaching, but also set aside some time in their schedule for other projects. Lyon is part of that program. He told me that, ideally, great teachers would have time to teach and also coach their colleagues, as he does, or help shape education policy.

'I think we need to have more teachers leading from the classroom. When an idea comes from the classroom, it’s going to be much stronger than anything that’s imposed on teachers from a principal or a superintendent or somewhere else. Imagine if experienced teachers could teach for half time and then work on curriculum half time, or teach for four days while writing a book. There are all sorts of different things that teachers should be part of, but it’s really difficult to balance those things with your classroom work.'"

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Photo of LEE BOYES

This has also been our conversation all year. Teachers who use their class time to mark papers rob their kids of learning time but teachers need time to be healthy too. Teacher leaders are called upon because they do a great job in the classroom AND to do that they spend an inordinate amount of personal time developing meaningful curriculum or making student contact out side of class (phone calls home, attending games and dances and plays, sponsoring clubs) When do they have time to lead others~!?

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