In our post last week, we shared teachers’ ideas to address foundational needs at their sites: curriculum aligned to more challenging standards, time to plan rigorous instructional cycles, and better professional work space. We’re excited to see the effect of addressing these important basic needs at La Escuelita, Madison Park Academy, and Coliseum College Prep Academy.
This week we are honored to announce another four Oakland schools whose teachers are putting promising retention strategies into practice, focused on the next level of the Gallup Engagement Hierarchy: management support for teachers in their roles. Two schools are piloting hybrid roles for master teachers to support teachers, and two schools are working on their school culture. We think both of these approaches can increase retention of experienced and new teachers alike.
Master teachers mentoring and coaching new teachers at North Oakland Community Charter School (NOCCS): Juliana Germak and Lorin King, master teachers at NOCCS, are piloting hybrid roles that provide them with 20% release time to coach and mentor developing teachers. This strategy keeps the best teachers in the classroom, invests in their career development, and provides beginning teachers with more support (while freeing up school leaders’ time).
Designing a new hybrid role at Learning Without Limits: Sonya Mehta, lead teacher at Learning Without Limits, is studying hybrid approaches from across the country and prototyping a hybrid role that can work for other seasoned teachers across Education For Change and increase student learning schoolwide.
Developing a mindfulness practice at International Community School (ICS): Liz Woodward, Nicol Lacava, Rachel Quinn and colleagues are partnering with Mindful Schools to develop individual mindfulness practice to support teacher well-being, and then supporting students in the classroom to develop a mindfulness practice.
Building a sustainable adult work culture at Greenleaf: Kelly McBride, Victoria Diaz, Michael Lee and colleagues are partnering with The Teaching Well to build awareness, skills, and strategies to create a sustainable work culture that supports teachers’ long-term effectiveness and sustainability and directly addresses burnout.
As Oakland teachers ourselves, we’re excited about these innovative proposals. Every day, we watch our colleagues extend themselves to go “above and beyond” to meet their students’ needs. Every year, we see colleagues leave Oakland schools or leave teaching altogether, because they didn’t feel successful or supported in their roles. We know there are no easy answers nor “silver bullet” solutions, but we are proud to be a part of an effort that enables Oakland teachers to make their ideas a reality. We are eager to learn alongside our colleagues and find more ways to support Oakland teachers’ satisfaction and retention.   Stay tuned next week when we announce three more teams of Oakland teachers implementing retention strategies that tackle teamwork and career growth!
Emma Coufal

Emma Coufal

Think College Now

Teacher Advisory Group Member (2016)

Jennie Herriot-Hatfield

Jennie Herriot-Hatfield

Think College Now

Teacher Advisory Group Member (2016)

 

Nina Portugal

Nina Portugal

Life Academy

Teacher Advisory Group Member (2016)