Supporting Teachers During a Pandemic

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in the spring of 2020, ISA pivoted quickly from providing onsite coaching to virtual coaching for teachers and leaders in its partner schools. After a year and a half of offering virtual coaching supports to individual teachers and teacher teams, we wanted to learn about and from teachers’ experiences with our virtual coaching. To do so, we conducted teacher focus group discussions and a teacher survey during the spring of 2021. ISA has two new briefs that came from this work. In one brief, ISA Virtual Coaching and Teachers’ Technology Skill Development, we focus on what teachers told us about the role of ISA virtual coaching in developing and strengthening their instructional technology skills. In the other, Teachers’ Experiences with the Shift from In-Person to Virtual ISA Coaching, we focus on what teachers told us about their experiences with the shift from in-person to virtual ISA coaching.

Webinar on March 3: Curating a Literacy Life: Student-Centered Learning at Glenville High School

This webinar on March 3 celebrates the publication of a new book by Dr. William (Bill) Kist with help from Glenville teachers, Shannon Davis and Ga-Vita Haynes. Curating a Literacy Life: Student-Centered Learning with Digital Media comes out of the work that Bill, an ISA coach and professor emeritus at Kent State University, did in the vibrant, student-centered classrooms of Shannon and Ga-Vita.

Bill’s book and this webinar will spotlight the idea of curation as a process for inspiring student-centered learning with digital media. Young people need to learn to become purposeful collectors and, thus, curators of their own learning, and Bill helped Shannon and Ga-Vita empower their students to make sense of all the books, videos, websites, and social media that they access. The webinar will share a model for learning to learn–a way of processing, making meaning, and repurposing the texts that surround everyone. Curating can happen no matter where the teaching and learning are taking place, whether virtually or face-to-face, in school or out of school. Using smartphones, a Netflix account, and access to a variety of young adult, canonical, and media texts, the act of curation provides a foundation for becoming lifelong scholars and artists.

Participants will be

  • Jacqueline Bell, co-principal, Glenville High School, Cleveland, OH
  • Shannon Davis, English teacher, Glenville High School
  • Dr. Betty Greene-Bryant, senior director of programs, ISA
  • Ga-Vita Haynes, English teacher, Glenville High School
  • Dr. William Kist, ISA coach and professor emeritus, Kent State University

Join us at 3:30 pm ET on March 3. Click to register.

From New America: The Representation of Social Groups in US Educational Materials and Why it Matters

In this newsletter we highlight a report from New America called The Representation of Social Groups in US Educational Materials and Why it Matters, authored by New America research fellow Amanda LaTasha Armstrong.

As Ms. Armstrong writes, the “report synthesizes the results of more than 160 studies to explain the connection between culturally responsive education materials and learning, and examines representation of different social groups. More specifically, it captures the frequency and portrayal of different racial, ethnic, and gender groups within printed and digital educational media to provide a comprehensive understanding of who is presented and how. Findings from the report suggest there is disparity in representation of characters from different racial, ethnic, and gender groups.”

Click to read more.