At Bearfield Primary School in Hertford County, North Carolina, paraprofessional reach associates help improve student outcomes by providing instructional support under the direction of multi-classroom leaders.
New Opportunity Culture Audio: N.C. Principal Shares Communication Strategies
By Public Impact, July 15, 2022
Julie Shields has been principal of Bearfield Primary School in Hertford County, North Carolina, since 2003. Just before Covid hit, her school began Opportunity Culture implementation to improve academic outcomes for students and enhance the caring atmosphere of the school.
Watch: Trends in the Teacher Workforce Webinar
By Public Impact, March 17, 2022
A recording of February’s “Trends in the Teacher Workforce” webinar, featuring a panel discussion moderated by Public Impact’s Alison Harris Welcher, is available now; click here to watch it and read EdNC’s report on the event, hosted by The Belk Foundation.
The panelists discussed strategies for recruiting and retaining teachers in North Carolina, including teacher residencies.
That’s a strategy that multiple Opportunity Culture school districts in Texas now use. Unlike traditional student-teacher roles, Opportunity Culture residencies are yearlong, paid positions on teaching teams led by multi-classroom leaders.
Equitable access to effective educators emerges as priority for North Carolina
From EdNC, March 16, 2022 by Mebane Rash
“Students in high-poverty schools are about half as likely to have access to highly effective teachers, compared to students in low-poverty schools,” said Johanna Anderson, executive director of The Belk Foundation, at a recent convening of their board of directors and education stakeholders.
This is not a new data point, but strategies are emerging to address it given vacancies in local labor markets for those working in schools and districts, and an initiative to redesign teacher licensure, support, advancement, and pay structures in North Carolina. Read More…
Dr. Valerie Bridges on Innovative Edgecombe County Public Schools
Dr. Valerie Bridges, superintendent of Edgecombe County Public Schools, says the district strives to stay innovative to benefit students and teachers.
NC Superintendents of the Year on Their Opportunity Culture Districts
Dr. Valerie Bridges and Dr. Anthony Jackson, 2022 and 2020 recipients of the A. Craig Phillips North Carolina Superintendent of the Year award, describe how the Opportunity Culture initiative has improved student outcomes and increased teacher retention in their districts.
Quick Take: Two MCLs’ Pandemic Tools to Monitor Student Understanding
By Sharon Kebschull Barrett, February 23, 2021
Although Nikki Glenn, a first-year MCL, and her team of four fifth-grade teachers at Falkener Elementary got to rejoin their students in the classroom for in-person learning in January (with one teaching children who chose to remain virtual), the tools they relied on last semester continue to prove their value.
Glenn’s team worked hard throughout the fall to determine how to effectively monitor students’ understanding and progress from a distance—useful still in socially distanced classrooms. Read more…
Opportunity Culture Spreads in Arkansas, North Carolina with State Support
By Public Impact, January 28, 2021
After the continued promising results in Opportunity Culture schools in their states and around the country, Arkansas and North Carolina have awarded grants to seven districts to design their Opportunity Culture plans for implementation in 2021–22.
Opportunity Culture schools use new roles—based on the cornerstone role of Multi-Classroom Leadership—to reach many more students with excellent, personalized instruction. These roles, which have produced outstanding student growth, provide intensive support to all teachers, paid career advancement, and a stronger teacher pipeline.
The national Opportunity Culture initiative, founded by Public Impact, is now in over 45 districts and charter school organizations across 10 states. Read more…
Tracking fall reopening plans for all North Carolina districts: New database from EdNC and Public Impact
From EdNC, October 7, 2020, by Beth Clifford, David Gilmore, Cole Smith, Preston Faulk and Molly Osborne
Since the COVID-19 pandemic upended life as we knew it in March, North Carolina school districts have had to rethink how they deliver education. After transitioning online in the spring, districts could choose between a hybrid model with limited face-to-face instruction (plan B) and 100% virtual instruction (plan C) for the start of the 2020-21 school year this fall. Read the full article…
How one educator used a paraprofessional role to become a stronger teacher
By Sharon Kebschull Barrett; first published by EducationNC, August 18, 2020
Delmonika Vick always wanted to be a teacher, and she got an education degree. But other opportunities kept coming along, and she found herself in corporate banking for four years — only to realize, several years in, what a struggle it was to go to work each day.
“I didn’t have any sense of fulfillment — I didn’t feel like I was making a difference,” Vick said. “I knew that I was supposed to teach, then — I knew that I had to pursue education.”
An Edgecombe County, North Carolina native, Vick intended to go straight into a classroom teaching role, until a chance meeting with Principal Donnell Cannon led to an offer to be a reach associate (RA) at North Edgecombe High. Read more…