Sunday, September 20, 2015
Grassroots Teacher Leaders
Nate Perry Elementary has always been like home to me. I began teaching there in 2003, and over the years my colleagues have become like family. They have been with me through everything, professionally and personally. They inspire me and challenge me, to be more, and to do more. In the last few years, many of the staff members that I began my career with have retired. I look around, and suddenly find myself one of the more veteran members of our staff. With that comes the realization that there are, or will soon be, people looking to me the way that I looked towards more seasoned members of our staff not so long ago. I looked up to these individuals not only because of their instructional expertise but also because of the way that they engaged the different members of the learning community. I looked to them to see how they interacted with colleagues and what norms had been established for our learning community. I looked to them for guidance and support, both formally and informally. All of this well before there was much mention of the role of teacher leaders. Teacher leadership seemed natural. It wasn't a specific job, title or role. It was something these individuals just assumed naturally. It grew out of the love they had for their profession, their students, and for one another. In our desire to promote teacher leadership, let's not forget the importance of this grassroots sort of leadership.