2017-18 South Carolina Teacher Forum
The 2017-18 District Teachers of the Year convened for the South Carolina Teacher Forum in Myrtle Beach earlier this month. The theme for this year was Keep Running. After an inspirational performance by Carolina Forest’s Show Choir, Sydney Chaffee, the 2017 National Teacher of the Year, delivered the opening keynote and urged teacher leaders to take risks and allow themselves to grow by embracing those things that push them outside of their comfort zones. Thursday was a busy day filled with a keynote by CERRA’s own Dr. Jenna Hallman, an overview of how to fill out the application for State Teacher of the Year, breakout sessions, roundtable discussions, and an unconference. The final day included a keynote by Erin Fox, 2018 South Carolina Teacher of the Year. Erin shared her own story of how she found balance both professionally and personally and urged the District Teachers of the Year to keep running through all of the challenges they face. Superintendent Molly Spearman thanked the teachers for what they do, and the 2018 SC Honor Roll teachers shared some insight into how leadership connects to recruitment and retention. Each District Teacher of the Year was pinned as a member of the South Carolina Teacher Forum.
A Look Inside the South Carolina Teacher Forum
The CERRA Team's Parting Thoughts
District Teacher Forums in Action
Sumter's Teacher Forum used the Six Word Activity to create individual statements about leadership. The forum’s leadership committee then used each statement to identify what was important to members as a new vision statement was crafted for the year’s work ahead.
This year we are not only inviting you to check out what we are reading,
but we want you to read with us.
Join us for a virtual book study of Mark Divine’s
The WAY of the SEAL:
Think Like an Elite Warrior to Lead and Succeed
Sign up to participate in the CERRA Book Club
here to receive the link for the book club discussions.
Join us for discussion threads, twitter chats, and more. Get your book over the winter break, and begin reading. While you may read at your own pace, there will be a suggested timeline. The first discussion thread will be open on January 10th.
“Genuine leadership must stem from the heart of an individual, regardless of (and sometimes in spite of) the organizational role or power systems in which he or she is enshrined.”
The New Teacher Center, in partnership with Dr. Richard Ingersoll, published the results of the Learning and Leading Survey which shows a connection between school leadership and teacher leadership with student achievement.
There is great news for South Carolina educators! 490 NBCTs successfully renewed their National Board certification. Renewal candidates were notified last month of their latest achievement.
Upcoming Trainings and Support Sessions
Awareness Webinars: 12/15/17, 1/10/18, 3/21/18, and 4/11/18
Renewal Webinars: 12/8/17, 1/17/18, 3/22/18, and 4/12/18
Professional Learning Facilitator Trainings: 11/21/18, 1/4/18, 2/6/18, 3/8/18, and 4/9/18
SCEA (Register at their website.)
Support Session – Components 1 and 2: 2/10/18
Support Session – Components 3 and 4: 3/10/18
Jump Start Sessions: July 16-19, 2018
PSTA (Register at their website.)
Renewal Support Session: 1/30/18 @ 4:30
SC Mentor Training
Mentor Trainer Certification: December 5-6, 2017, February 27-28, 2018, and June 13-14, 2018
Mentor Training: January 30-31, 2018
What does it mean to undertake the Way of the SEAL?
The SC Department of Education has been given the tremendous opportunity to design and implement a Collective Leadership Initiative that we will begin piloting in fall 2017. As we develop this model, we are also exploring the need for a more personalized learning approach to professional development around specific areas of leadership through the development and completion of micro-credentials for SC educators.
Given the importance of this work and your role as a stakeholder in the education of SC’s children and support of their educators, we invite you to an important meeting for a day of learning and sharing with key leaders from a number of school districts and organizations.
The meeting will be held at the Columbia Conference Center, 169 Laurelhurst Avenue on June 16th from 9:00am to 4:00pm. Lunch will be provided and renewal credit will be offered.
The meeting will provide you the opportunity to learn more about the Collective Leadership pilot as well as the national landscape of professional development and the movement to a personalized approach for educators via micro-credentials.
We ask that you register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/statewide-leadership-micro-credential-awareness-convening-general-tickets-35011796225 by June 9th. NOTE: SEATING IS LIMITED SO PLEASE REGISTER ASAP TO ENSURE YOUR SPACE. We will follow up with additional details prior to the meeting.
We are excited to convene this important meeting and look forward to seeing you there!
This post created on behalf of Libby Ortmann, South Carolina Department of Education, Office of School Leadership.
2018 South Carolina Teacher of the Year
Erin Fox from Cherokee School District One was named the 2018 South Carolina Teacher of the Year. Erin is an English teacher at Gaffney High School who uses her background in drama, dance, and music in order to create dynamic lessons for her students. She also coaches cross country. Erin shared that she hopes to be an advocate for teachers and students
Charles H. Dickerson Community Service Award Recipient
Caroline Weathers from Dorchester School District Four was awarded the Charles H. Dickerson for Community Service Award. Caroline teachers 7th grade science. She was recognized for making significant contributions to her community. She will receive a monetary award of $500 and a second monetary award of $500 to donate to a charity of her choice. She was honored both at the Teacher of the Year banquet and the Bojangles breakfast the following day.
Caroline has chosen to send her donation to the Fresh Future Farms in North Charleston, a nonprofit inner-city farm learning center focused on increasing nutritional equity and providing economic opportunities for the community. This grassroots organization is led by Germaine Jenkins whose goal it is to develop better food systems for residents of South Carolina.
2017 South Carolina Teacher of the Year Event
All of the 2017 District Teachers of the Year gathered in Columbia on May 3rd to celebrate teachers in South Carolina. The teachers entered a reception to the sound of a trumpet announcing their arrival. There they were able to network with family, friends, educators, and policy makers. Each District Teacher of the Year was recognized on stage by Judi Gatson. The guests enjoyed a dinner with a keynote from a graduate of South Carolina Schools, Dr. Robert "Bobby" Satcher, Jr., who was the first orthopedic surgeon in space and participated in two spacewalks. Megan Nicholson, a singer/songwriter from Central High School performed an original song entitled "No More! No More!" for the audience. After 2017 South Carolina Teacher of the Year Jennifer Wise gave her parting words, State Superintendent Molly Spearman announced Erin Fox as the next State Teacher of the Year. Superintendent Spearman treated the teachers and their guests to milk and cookies after the banquet. The next day, Bojangles provided breakfast for the District Teachers of the Year before they embarked on a journey to the South Carolina State House to be take part in a press conference with Governor McMaster to declare May Teacher Appreciation Month. The teachers were also recognized in both the House and the Senate chambers.
Photo Credits: Todd Scholl
District Teacher Forums in Action
The 2017 District Teachers of the Year along with other Teacher Leaders in our state were given the opportunity to participate in a pilot of a Micro-Credential program. Participants were able to select two micro-credential competencies to submit to the Center for Teaching Quality later in the summer.
"[I]f you want to rise to towering heights in your life, you must make sure that you build your life on a sure, solid foundation. The foundations upon which you build your life determine how high you can rise. You must make sure to lay the proper foundation." --Manny Scott
Spotlight on the 2017 and 2018 South Carolina Teachers of the Year
Jennifer Wise was selected as a 2017-2018 Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellow. Twelve STEM educators were selected to serve the 11-month fellowship in Washington, DC, within the offices of three sponsoring agencies and five Congressional Offices. We congratulate Jennifer on this accomplishment and wish her well on this next step in her journey.
We recently asked South Carolina's 2018 Teacher of the Year Erin Fox about teachers who had influenced her. Her parents were both teachers, and they taught her that education is paramount to an individual's success. They pushed her to never settle for mediocrity. Her 10th grade English teacher, Mrs. Sharon Elliott, helped her realize that her voice deserved to be heard. Mrs. BettySue Cowan introduced her to the world of musical theatre. Ms. Joanne Davis was her voice of reason; she showed her that anything was possible. Erin understands that teachers have the opportunity to show students the potential they possess. She believes that teachers should bring energy and joy to the classroom because positivity and happiness are contagious.
2017 District Teacher of the Year receives scholarship
Jodie Peele Branham, the 2017 Latta School District Teacher of the Year received the Kevin Grover Distinguished Teacher Leader Award which provided her a $5,000 scholarship towards a Master of Arts in Teacher Leadership degree from Mount Holyoke College. She just found out that she was accepted into the program and looks forward to learning more about developing as a teacher leader. The scholarship was founded in memory of the 2010 Maine Teacher of the Year to honor his dedication to his students, profession, and public education. He believed that teaching is the "best job in the world." Congratulations to Jodie who will work towards building an improved education system for every child.
National Education News
The American Institutes for Research in collaboration with several other organizations recently published the 2017 Good to Great Report. CERRA's own Jenna Hallman participated in one of the working groups. The findings from the teacher-driven research study support the work that CERRA is doing in mentoring, National Board Certification, and teacher leadership.
South Carolina Education News
South Carolina is launching a high school aerospace curriculum in the fall of the 2017-18 school year. Six high schools across the state will offer the aerospace engineering classes.
Three high school students were named as U.S. Presidential Scholars. Congratulations are extended to Jessica Marlow (Dorman High School), Jonathan Michala (Eastside High School), and Karen Zhao (Riverside High School).
The legislators have ratified a bill to provide a state recognized graduation credential for students with disabilities. Beginning in the coming year, ninth graders will be the first group eligible to earn a state recognized employment credential. This project was spearheaded by participants in the South Carolina Education Policy Fellows program, Traci Hogan and Chuck Saylors.
CERRA has piloted two National Board cohorts this year, one in Greenville and one in Dorchester 2. The cohorts focused on Components One and Three of the National Board Certification process, but several members completed all four components this year. Next year these districts will provide cohort support for Components Two and Four. Any districts interested in learning more will soon have access on our website.
"Things like worthy goals, sense of belonging, commitment to quality and feeling supported are the essential glue that binds a group to both the work and each other. Organization communication, and flexibility act as the oil that reduces friction and keeps things running smoothly." -- Margaret Searle & Marilyn Swartz
Upcoming Mentor Training Dates
Upcoming Mentor Trainer Certification Dates
Upcoming National Board Support Sessions
The Campus Directors at each of the Teaching Fellows Institutions across the state are always looking for speakers/presenters. As teacher leaders you are the perfect people to serve in this capacity. By completing the form available here, you are giving CERRA permission to share your name and contact information with the Campus Directors. The Campus Directors will contact you directly if they wish to invite you to their school. The Campus Director will also be responsible for providing all the information about the meetings, available technology etc. The form will provide you with an opportunity to identify your potential presentation and/or discussion topics as well as the institutions you are willing to travel to. Thanks you for your willingness to support the Teaching Fellows Program.
"Large or small, chronic or crisis, adversity happens. How you respond is determined in part by your resilience capacity when tough times strike."
--Jerry L. Patterson & Paul Kelleher
Reading Corner: Check out what we're reading.
Resilient School Leaders
The Cycle of Resisilience
Learn more about overcoming adversity and strengthening your resilience in Patterson and Kelleher's book. They describe six strengths that allow leaders to positively impact the culture of an organization:
Looking for a little inspiration from one of our featured authors?
CERRA'S TEACHER LEADERSHIP TEAM
BY SUZANNE KOTY
Teach to Lead will host its 12th Teacher Leadership Summit.
May 5-7, 2017
Teach to Lead supports teachers as experts in instruction and in their students' needs. The Teach to Lead Summit provides teachers and their supporters with time to collaborate and to incubate innovative ideas that can lead to a positive impact on schools, communities, districts, and states.
There are several benefits of participation in the summit:
As a participant, you will receive:
Any educator with an actionable idea may submit an application.
Teams must have 2-5 members. They must include one active teacher. Other key stakeholders are encouraged to participate in a team such as parents, students, community members, school or government officials.
All submitted ideas must:
Submitted ideas may:
We are pleased to bring you the third edition of the South Carolina Teacher Leadership newsletter. Our goal is to provide a collaborative resource that highlights state and district level teacher leadership activities, outlines issues related to South Carolina education, and sparks ideas among our Teacher Forums.
District Teacher Forums in Action
District Teacher Forums across the state are participating in a variety of activities to advocate for the profession. Members of the Kershaw County Teacher Forum met with legislators to discuss current issues, and the Greenville County Teacher Forum held its second annual golf tournament to raise money for scholarships. We are just days away from the Upstate Regional Meeting hosted by Spartanburg 6.
Throughout the week of March 6th-10th, State Superintendent Molly Spearman traveled the state surprising five teachers who have been selected as the 2018 South Carolina Honor Roll Teachers. These five teachers are finalists for State Teacher of the Year. They will now conduct interviews and videotaping as part of the process for the selection of the next South Carolina Teacher of the Year. Each of these educators will be celebrated at the South Carolina Teacher of the Year banquet. The Honor Roll Teachers will work with the 2018 South Carolina Teacher of the Year to advocate and promote teacher leadership throughout the year.
Meet the Finalists for State Teacher of the Year!
South Carolina Teacher Forum
A Message from Jennifer Wise
Several weeks ago, I had the opportunity to meet my fellow 2017 state teachers of the year in Dallas, Texas. As the trip approached, I was filled with anxiousness as to how I could compare to these no-doubt outstanding educators. No matter what title I may hold, in my mind, so often I am still a little girl from Gaffney, SC. While I am proud of what that means, I get nervous that I won’t be enough. But as the week began to unfold, I found the most interesting truth to reveal itself; every one of us had that same fear. Time and time again, as a teacher would be sharing his or her story on who they were and why they were there, a statement was echoed, “I ask myself, why me?”
You may ask yourself that same question, and if so, I want to share the words we received in response. Because you represent all that is good in education. Because you love your students and serve them in incredible ways every day. Because you are an integral part in how lives are transformed through education. Each of you has a unique and powerful story that speaks to the passion of our profession and can ignite a similar desire in others. Use that story. Share that story. It is the answer to the question, “Why me?”
To drive this point home just a bit more, I have one of my own stories to share from the week. As several of you know, we had a special guest with us: Renee Zellweger. As you might expect, we regularly circled around her to ask questions, but what we quickly learned was that she wanted to hear from us. She wanted to know what she could do to help support education. She sees the value in what we do every day, and she wants to be a part of it. And when my friend, Ryan (2017 Wyoming Teacher of the Year) introduced himself and said he was a 7th grade science teacher, she immediately responded with a sigh and, “I loved my 7th grade science teacher; her name was Ms. Solstice!” Dear friends, there are students throughout your schools, cities, and this great state and nation that say the same thing about you! You are mentors; you are life changers. You are girls and guys on fire!!! --Jennifer Wise
National Education News
Visit the Education Commission of the States' website for a complete listing of educational priorities as identified in each state in the 2017 State of the State addresses.
South Carolina Education News
In 2018-19, South Carolina will begin using a new evaluation tool for all classroom-based teachers. The South Carolina Teaching Standards 4.0 rubric will become part of the Expanded ADEPT Support and Evaluation System.
The National Board of Professional Teaching Standards has released its 2017-18 dates. Those interested in pursuing National Board Certification can register as early as April 1, 2017. South Carolina is proud to have 8,928 NBCTs.
The General Assembly is now in session. It is important that our legislators know about the “big issues” in education and how they can support you as teachers and support your students. Remember to share your stories.
Teacher of the Year Banquet: May 3rd