Using online modules to strengthen teacher leadership programs


Teacher leader programs offer opportunities for teachers to assume leader roles and leverage their expertise in teaching without leaving the classroom. Despite some of the potential and promise of teacher leader programs, new programs often struggle with problems that stem from mismanagement that limits their effectiveness.

As teacher leader programs become more prolific across the country, there is a growing need for district- and school-level staff to design policies and practices to select, develop, support, manage, compensate, and retain teacher leaders. While there is a plethora of literature on teacher leadership that addresses these components, the information is not accessible to educators in a manner that allows them to easily and efficiently digest all of the different approaches and lessons learned to adapt to their context.

To make the literature on teacher leadership more accessible and engaging, we chose to develop interactive online modules—Managing Teacher Leadership—that cover nine components critical to managing teacher leadership programs. The modules focus on increasing awareness and understanding of how to design, implement, and evaluate a teacher leader programin a school building or district. 

The nine modules correspond to components of talent management and present big ideas that distill essential information from the literature and offer readers relevant approaches to the specific work described in each module, varying from general guidance and exercises to relevant tools and resources. The online modules are designed to engage educators and make the approaches and lessons learned more accessible, to help school districts design and implement teacher leader programs on their own and at their own pace.  

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