You’re invited: Talk teacher leadership with teacher leaders on March 5

Originally scheduled for the snowiest day in February, the event we’re hosting with the Center for Teaching Quality will now take place on March 5.

Local educators will discuss “Teacherpreneurs: Innovative Teachers Who Lead But Don’t Leave,” a book that the center published last year. Stephen LazarAriel Sacks, and Jose Vilson, city teachers whose ideas we’ve featured in the past, will make the case for new roles for teachers in a discussion moderated by Chalkbeat New York’s community editor, Emma Sokoloff-Rubin.

Here’s a taste of the topic from Lazar, who last year shared a taste of a personal narrative about teacher leadership that he presented in an academic paper:

Over the past ten years, I have transformed from a third-year teacher who turned down opportunities to present his work because he felt he had nothing to offer other teachers, to a ninth-year teacher who co-founded a new school, writes for publication, delivers professional development, and nurtures in-person and virtual networks for teacher development, while firmly retaining a primary identity of classroom teacher. …

My experience suggests that schools and organizations must create structures to identify, develop, and compensate teacher-leaders in ways that recognizes their work while keeping them firmly in the classroom. The attempt to conceptualize such individuals as teacher-leaders or teacherpreneurs is a necessary first step, which must be followed by opportunities beyond existing conference structures for teachers to not only to work with other teachers, but to earn recognition and compensation for doing so. By developing more teacher-leaders, there will be a dual benefit: the best teachers will have incentive to stay teachers, while the system will benefit from their knowledge and expertise.

Space at the event — which will take place at the Ford Foundation’s Midtown Manhattan office at 6 p.m. — is limited but still available. Register here.

What's Your Education Story?

We can’t wait for you to hear these Indianapolis teachers’ stories — join us April 19

PHOTO: Ronak Shah

Indianapolis teachers have more stories from their classrooms to share this spring.

Over the past year, Chalkbeat has brought readers personal stories from the teachers, students, and leaders of Indianapolis through our occasional series, What’s Your Education Story? Some of our favorites were told live during teacher story slams hosted by Teachers Lounge Indy.

The stories dealt with how a teacher grappled with coming out to his students, a class that organized to save historic trees in their community, and the unexpected lesson of a mouse in the classroom.

Next month, Chalkbeat is partnering with Teachers Lounge Indy, WFYI Public Media, and the Indianapolis Public Library to host a story slam. The event, 5:30 p.m. Thursday, April 19, will showcase tales from across Circle City classrooms. It is free and open to the public — please RSVP here.

Event details:

5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 19, 2018
Central Library, Clowes Auditorium
40 E. St. Clair St., Indianapolis, IN
Get tickets here and find more on Facebook

We're listening

What are the Newark education stories you want to read?

PHOTO: Patrick Wall

This is a historic moment for Newark’s public schools.

After 22 years of state takeover ended last month, the city school board is re-empowered and gearing up to pick a new superintendent. Candidates are lining up to vie for three board seats that will open next month, even as Mayor Ras Baraka — who as a former principal promised to usher in a new era for the city’s schools — runs for reelection in May.

And, just in time to help make sense of it all, Chalkbeat Newark officially launched this week.

I’m Patrick Wall, Chalkbeat Newark’s founding reporter. I hope to spotlight some of the city’s education movers and shakers, track the growth of Newark’s charter sector and the pressure it’s put on the district’s budget, and show what’s happening inside city classrooms. And that’s just this month.

To do all that, I need your help. At Chalkbeat, our readers are the people who shape the local schools and rely on them. They’re also our sources. As we start in Newark, I’m hoping you’ll not only read our coverage but also help steer it, suggesting stories and making sure we reach a wide audience. Here are three ways you can help:

  1. Sign up for the weekly Newark newsletter. In it, I’ll share my reporting and round up the great coverage by other outlets so that you know everything you need to about Newark schools. The first newsletter goes out this Friday.
  2. Tell me what you want to read. Which power brokers or inspiring students do you want to meet? What arcane policies or tangled politics do you want to understand? Which schools or programs do you want to see up close? Please send your questions, ideas, and tips to
  3. Come say “hi.” I’m planning to host regular “office hours” throughout the community to meet readers where they are. The first edition will be at the Springfield Branch library during their college fair from 4 to 7 p.m. on Weds., March 14. (Details here.) Say hello and share your story ideas as you pick up college applications and talk to recruiters.

As Chalkbeat Newark gets up and running, I hope you’ll come along for the ride.