JW June 2016 NewsletterDear Friends,

When great teachers grow as leaders and participate in the discussion about sustaining and improving student-focused policies and practices, they help their profession and their students.

With that thought, SCORE launched the Tennessee Educator Fellowship in 2014 to provide a yearlong experience for classroom teachers to learn about, reflect on, and inform the policies, practices, and systems that affect student achievement and educator effectiveness. We are impressed by the ways the Tennessee Educator Fellows have used their voice to illuminate both the success happening in classrooms across Tennessee and areas for more improvement.

Over the past year, the 2015-16 cohort of fellows impressed and inspired us in their efforts on behalf of their students, their colleagues, and their communities. These 26 teachers have polished their advocacy and communication skills while deepening their understanding of education issues facing Tennessee. They have connected with policymakers, community members, parents, business leaders, and other educators to share their vision of a better future for our students. While their year of fellowship has ended, I am confident that as alumni of the program they will continue to use their voices to further a shared vision of continued improvement for Tennessee schools.

I am looking forward to welcoming the 2016-17 cohort of Tennessee Educator Fellows, the largest class yet, when they convene for the first time in person July 18-20. These 49 teachers, who represent a broad range of the diversity of educators in Tennessee, bring a wealth of experience and expertise, and I am excited to learn more about them and their perspectives on how best to advance student achievement in Tennessee.

Empowering Tennessee teachers was one priority set forth in the 2015-16 State of Education in Tennessee report. The expanded Tennessee Educator Fellowship will give a new cohort of teachers the knowledge, strategies, and confidence to speak on behalf of their profession and Tennessee’s students. When we cultivate and elevate the voices of these Fellows, the conversation becomes more productive, pragmatic, and most importantly, more centered on students.

Very truly yours,

Jamie Signature 4-2014