'When teachers network, they become a social force for the good of society and each child in their classrooms. This book is a must-read for anyone who cares about teaching and teacher development'
-Mary M. Brabeck, Dean and Professor of Applied Psychology , Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University
'This book is essential for anyone interested in the future of public education in America. Embedded in the notion that teachers are the solution, not the problem, this book explores how teachers can create a vision, find a voice, manage a growing network, and make a difference. Surely there is nothing more important as we grapple with how best to move forward' -Bill Cirone, Superintendent
Santa Barbara County Education Office, CA
'This resource makes a most compelling case for the centrality of professional community to excellent teaching. It provides a ringing clarion call for teacher collaboration and for grounding educational policy in the real world of the classroom and the school. Part how-to manual for building teacher networks and part chronicle of the authors' successful work, this book sets forth a vision for the transformation of our nation's schools through the development of teacher voices'
-Randi Weingarten, President
American Federation of Teachers
When connected through inter-school networks, teachers can communicate with each other and share invaluable information and ideas across district and state boundaries, ultimately enhancing both their own effectiveness and student learning. This step-by-step guide shows you how to create, manage, and sustain a teacher network or grow an existing one, and provides an easily adaptable model developed by The Teachers Network.
The book includes teacher vignettes and director and advisors' experiences in managing a network, plus a wealth of worksheets, tools, and resources to get you started. Practical guidelines illustrate how networks can:
- Support new teachers, reduce teacher isolation, and increase retention rates
- Share the benefits of collaborative group work, including action research
- Enhance professional practice and nurture teacher leaders
- Connect teachers to the goals and ideals that drew them into education
Teachers working together can not only make a significant impact on their school communities, but also strengthen the influence that teacher leaders can have in the wider arena of educational policy.
Ellen Meyers is a founder and senior vice president of Teachers Network and director of the Teachers Network Leadership Institute (TNLI). Meyers has had a long, distinguished career in education with an extensive list of accomplishments, among them: editor-in-chief of the by teachers, for teachers series of handbooks, including the New Teachers Handbook and How to Use the Internet in the Classroom; co-editor of Taking Action with Teacher Research (2003); producer of the television series "Successful Teaching Practices in Action"; innovator of the award-winning Web site teachersnetwork.org; and developer of Teachers Network's online courses. Her passion is bridging the gap between schoolhouses and statehouses by empowering teachers to provide a voice in education policymaking. Meyers has a master's in education from Cambridge College and was recently awarded a certificate in English language teaching from Long Island University. For five years, she was adjunct professor at New York University's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, and she has been an instructor of English at Long Island University. Peter A. Paul is vice president of Teachers Network and also serves as national coordinator of the Teachers Network Leadership Institute (TNLI). Additionally, he directs Teachers Network's New Teacher Resource Program, which helps support thousands of new teachers each year across the U.S. Paul has a concentration in educational policy from Teachers College, Columbia University, where he was inducted as a permanent member into its chapter of Kappa Delta Pi (International Honor Society in Education) and has also received numerous other recognitions, such as citations in Who's Who in the World, Who's Who in Asia-First Edition, and Outstanding People of the 20th Century (Cambridge, England). As a licensed elementary and middle school teacher, he has taught at all levels and in mixed environments-including urban, rural, and suburban classrooms-throughout the US and Japan. The son of two teachers and education professors, Paul is the founding president of NCA Schools International-a Northern Japan-based chain of English-language schools. Prior to returning to the US in 1997, Paul did extensive public speaking and educational consulting abroad. David E. Kirkland is assistant professor of English education at New York University's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development in the Department of Teaching and Learning. His research focuses on urban youth popular culture, language and literacy, teacher research, and urban teacher education. For five years, Kirkland taught secondary reading and English language arts in Detroit and Lansing, Michigan. He received his master's in philosophy from the University of Michigan, and a PhD in language, literacy, and urban education from Michigan State. His professional memberships include American Educational Research Association (AERA), Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC), National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Detroit Branch, National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), and Michigan Council of Teachers of English (MCTE)-NCTE Affiliate Organization. Nancy Fichtman Dana is currently Professor of Education in the School of Teaching and Learning at the University of Florida, Gainesville, and has been studying practitioner inquiry for the last twenty years. During this time, she has developed and taught classes on practitioner research for undergraduate, masters, and doctoral students, coached the practitioner research of numerous educators from various districts across the nation, as well as published nine books and over 50 book chapters and articles in professional journals focused on teacher and principal professional development and practitioner inquiry.