Opportunity Culture: In the News, On the Radio–and a Milken Award!

by | January 26, 2018

By Sharon Kebschull Barrett, January 26, 2018

Multi-classroom leaders have been in the spotlight this week!

In the News: The recent release of a study by the American Institutes for Research and the Brookings Institution highlights the power of multi-classroom leaders (MCLs). The team teachers studied, who were now on teams led by MCLs, were, on average, at the 50th percentile in the student learning gains they produced before joining an MCL team. After joining the teams, they produced learning gains equivalent to those of teachers from the 75th to 85th percentile in math, and, in six of the seven statistical models, from 66th to 72nd percentile in reading, said the report, released on January 11 through the CALDER Center. The study’s authors, Michael Hansen and Ben Backes, offer their own take on the results here. If you missed it, Public Impact’s co-presidents, Bryan C. Hassel and Emily Ayscue Hassel, wrote their own post in Education Next about the results. Education Week reported on the results here.

On the Radio: Lucy Steiner, Public Impact’s senior vice president for educator excellence and implementation services, spearheads Opportunity Culture implementation in schools and districts nationwide. She and I went on WCHL, the news station in Chapel Hill, N.C., recently to share details and tell stories about Opportunity Culture and multi-classroom leaders.

A Milken Award! Called the “Oscars of teaching,” the Milken Educator Awards surprise recipients around the country each year at a school assembly with a no-strings-attached check for $25,000–in recognition of the achievements of early- to mid-career educators and for the promise of what they have yet to achieve.

On Thursday, a multi-classroom leader at North Little Rock Middle School, Dawn McLain, walked in to what she thought was an assembly about the school’s Opportunity Culture plans–and walked out $25,000 richer.

“Ms. McLain embodies the qualities of a student-focused educator. She inspires those around her to learn, grow, take risks, and develop a students-first mentality,” Arkansas Department of Education Commissioner Johnny Key said in a press release. “Her role as a teacher-leader and the impact she has made on student achievement through that role sets a strong example for other districts wanting to empower their teacher-leaders.”

Read all about it here and here.

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