Baltimore Teacher Network gave me the opportunity to have an open discussion with other thoughtful educators about alternative ways to evaluate student work.
I remain impressed by the passion that educators embody. In the middle of a school week, teachers and educators came together to discuss and learn about policies that affect them, their schools, and their kids.
It is so important to have these conversations and to be able to dialogue with the power that be about the issues affecting our professionalism. We are the student learning experts.
It was valuable to hear what people were thinking about across the many groups that feel passionately about supporting teachers.
The ability to discuss real issues that affect my teaching career with a variety of stakeholders was well worth my time.
As an administrator, it is imperative for me to stay abreast of the changes that directly affect students and teachers. The forum allowed me to gain a broader perspective about the new evaluation system, its rationale, its potential flaws and real-time concerns of involved stakeholders.
Teacher Evaluation Teacher Inquiry Group (TIG) Monday, February 10th
This Teacher Inquiry Group (TIG) investigated issues surrounding the implementation of new teacher evaluation systems. How do we identify a good teacher? How do teachers experience systemic attempts to balance formative feedback for improvement and summative decisions about their job status?
Through our Web site BTN provides a catalyst for well-informed, thoughtful, praxis-oriented conversations surrounding issues of
teacher professionalism and teacher voice in classroom practice and education policy.
Our focus is on participatory action research and publication.
The University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) has recently rolled out a project called BreakingGround. This is a campus-wide conversation around civic engagement. BTN has partnered with UMBC and BreakingGround to provide Baltimore teachers and education activists with an opportunity to connect to faculty and graduate students for the development of action research projects around encouraging and supporting teacher voice.
Future discussion and event topics will emerge from our webpage blog entries and subsequent member contributions. Where appropriate BTN's Committee for Teacher Voice organizes face-to-face teacher symposia. Through these in-person symposia, Baltimore area teachers and university faculty and graduate students can come together to discuss the dilemmas of teacher professionalism and teacher voice, to present the results of action research, and to create connections leading to future action research projects and papers.