T3: Turnaround Teacher Teams

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1 T3: Turnaround Teacher Teams

2 T3 Program History The T3 Initiative began in 2009 as a policy proposal from Teach Plus s first cohort of 16 Teaching Policy Fellows, all teachers in urban public schools in the Boston area. As part of their 2-year fellowship, they created a model for staffing chronically underperforming schools with cohorts of outstanding, experienced teachers. The teachers proposal, Ready for the Next Challenge, outlined the principles upon which the T3 Initiative is based. T3 launched in Boston in 2010.

3 T3 Partnership The T3 Initiative is a set of partnerships with districts that began in 2010 between Teach Plus and Boston Public Schools. This approach supported Boston Public Schools Acceleration Agenda strategy to Replicate success and turnaround low performing schools. BPS has earned national recognition for its investments in programs that help educators hone the necessary skills to become teacher leaders. BPS believes that the development and retention of a highly qualified and diverse teaching force will be the single most important factor in ensuring achievement for ALL students -BPS Acceleration Agenda, 2010

4 T3 Partnership Statement of Problem: Why we need teacher leaders? High rates of new teacher attrition in the Boston Public Schools and accompanying costs Inconsistent teacher quality across the district Need to retain talented and experienced teachers Lack of adequate school-based support Birkeland, S., Curtis, R. Ensuring the Support and Development of New Teacher s in he Boston Public Schools(2006) -

5 T3 Overview The T3 Initiative: Creates cohorts of highly effective and experienced teachers Supports them in becoming turnaround teacher leaders Places them in teams in the schools where they are most needed Key Elements of the T3 Initiative: Team-Based Staffing. T3 teachers work together as teams that comprise at least 25% of the school faculty; Strong Leadership. T3 partner schools have strong, effective principals who support and empower teachers, who value teacher leadership, and who prioritize time for teacher collaboration; Support. T3 teachers receive ongoing professional development to continue to grow as teachers and leaders that begins with an intensive summer institute and continues under a school based coach. T3 coaches train teachers to analyze student data and lead teachers in inquiry-based discussions around improving student outcomes. Differentiated Pay. T3 teachers are compensated for the additional time required to serve in their leadership roles through a $6,000 salary differential that acknowledges their status.

6 T3 in Boston Public Schools in Partner Schools Blackstone Elementary School (PK-5) Roger Clap Innovation School (PK-5) Trotter Elementary School (K-5) Dearborn Middle School (6-8) Orchard Gardens Pilot School(K-8) UP Academy Charter School (6-8) Total T3 Teacher Leaders in BPS in : 61-1/3 returning to their turnaround schools, 1/3 from other BPS schools, 1/3 from charter schools or other states. T3 teacher leaders have an average of nine years of experience. Leadership Roles Include: Grade-level team leaders, Content specialist team leaders (Special Education, Specialist, ELL), Vertical integration team leaders, school-wide initiatives Leadership Commitment: Additional 25 day time equivalent Training : Summer institute, network PD, bi monthly school based Teacher Leadership Learning Time with coach Planning: Weekly prep for grade level team meetings and leading PD Leadership: Leading grade-level teams, ILT or School Redesign team, leading PD

7 T3 in Partner Districts Boston Public Schools 9 schools Fall River (MA) Public Schools 2 schools Achievement School District, Tennessee 3 schools in Memphis Total T3 Teacher Leaders in : 140

8 T3 Recruitment and Selection Recruitment Teach Plus recruits nationally for T3 teachers through paid advertising online and in print, conferences, social media, partner organizations, and professional associations. This year there were six applicants for every new position. Selection Process Teachers must apply to the T3 Initiative, and the selection process is run jointly by Teach Plus and Boston Public Schools. Minimum qualifications include at least three years of teaching experience in a high poverty school and a track record of effectiveness with students. The process includes: A written application An interview day that includes a team activity Evidence of effective classroom teaching practice

9 T3 Support and Professional Development Summer Institute T3 teacher leaders attend an intensive summer institute that focuses on the specific skills they need to be successful as teacher leaders as well as district initiatives. School-based Coaches Each T3 partner school has a school-based coach who provides day-to-day support for the teacher leaders as a cohort, in the individual teams T3 teachers lead, and one on one. Network Professional Development All T3 teachers attend regular cross-school professional development sessions to share best practices and develop as leaders

10 Turnaround Teacher Teams (T3) are collaborative cohorts of effective teachers who lead swift, systematic, and sustainable improvement toward their school s learning goals. They will best achieve these goals when all members of the cohort (and the T3 support team) act as Purpose-Driven Instructional Leaders Ongoing Learners Facilitators of Learning Evidence-Based Decision Makers Change Agents

11 T3 Funding Costs Recruitment and selection Program management Professional development and support (coaches) Teacher stipends Funding Sources School Improvement Grants (SIG) Teacher Incentive Fund (TIF) Race to the Top Foundations

12 T3 Stakeholders Teach Plus Nonprofit partner Overall program management Recruitment and selection Maintain high quality and consistency of PD and support Alignment with other partners Fundraising Coaches Provide dayto day support and professional development to teacher leaders Develop the leadership skill and capacity of teacher leaders District Stipends Selection Career ladder Alignment with other teacher leadership opportunities Identifying areas of need Professional Development T3 Teacher Leaders Lead teams of colleagues in data analysis and planning instruction to increase the capacity of ALL teachers in the building Lead key components of the schools turnaround strategy Principals Define vision of shared leadership and roles of teacher leaders Outline teacher leader spheres of influence

13 T3 Impact In the two years since the Achievement Gap Act was signed into law in Massachusetts, the T3 Initiative has played a key role in the urgent movement to turn around low-performing schools. In the first cohort of T3 partner schools in Boston we have seen the following results: Attracted large numbers of excellent teachers to work in low-performing schools (5 per available position) Given a clear teacher leadership opportunity for highly skilled and experienced teachers. T3 teacher leaders have on average 9 years of experience. Identified teacher leaders for high need schools from both inside and outsideof the district.

14 T3 Impact Schools that use T3 teacher leaders as part of their comprehensive turnaround strategy saw greaterachievement growth (as measured by Student Growth Percentile) than other Massachusetts students, particularly students in other low-performing turnaround schools.

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