A new online resource is helping forge connections within a growing network of advocates working to amplify the perspectives of educators. The Educator Voice Opportunities report can be filtered by state to explore the national landscape of educator voice work (so far, 19 organizations working in 29 states have contributed their insights). Advocates can also find specific opportunities, highlighted resources, contact information, and more.
In addition to showcasing the collective impact of this expanding area of advocacy, the report also shares advocates’ reflections on engaging with professionals who work with students every day. Rachel Chan, Senior Program Officer at the Rodel Foundation, shared this insight into work with the Rodel Teacher Council:
“There are many flavors of teacher voice work, but we found it helpful to focus our council on a specific topic, and it was even more helpful to focus on something future-oriented…
This helped people think about and engage with what is possible, which completely changed the tone of the conversation to keep the group student-centered and visionary.”
“When teachers’ efforts to elevate their profession are not just recognized but amplified and expanded, this spirit is contagious.
Organizing and bolstering these efforts, while also encouraging the organic connectivity among educators, proves very fruitful for organizations aiming for teacher-led solutions.”
For many advocates, working directly with educators in pursuit of teacher-led solutions has led to notable policy victories. For example, participants in Teach Plus’ Teaching Policy Fellowship have recently played a leading role in passing a new funding formula in Illinois, reforming teacher evaluations in New Mexico, and in sponsoring legislation in California to strengthen teacher tenure provisions.
According to Chris Eide, Teach Plus’ National Director of State Policy, Advocacy and Partnerships, “We believe that any good piece of policy or policy-making in education must include educators, and that those educators must be prepared to make decisions that connect systems-level thinking with school-level impact.”
If you have questions about this resource, please reach out.