Paving the Way for Latinx Teachers

This report adds a significant perspective to the current wave of efforts aimed at diversifying the teacher workforce, specifically to address the mismatch between Latinx students and Latinx teachers. The Latinx population is the largest ethnic group in America’s public schools, currently making up a quarter of the student population, and expected to grow to one-third by 2027. Research shows that schools and districts with teachers that reflect the cultural, racial, and/or linguistic backgrounds of Latinx students are better equipped to support them. This report—one of the first focused solely on pathways into teaching for Latinx individuals—explores how Latinx teachers typically enter the profession and the barriers they face along the way. This report profiles three Latinx-focused pathways into teaching that are attempting to reduce those barriers, reflects on key findings and offers recommendations for policymakers and practitioners.

Arts, SEL Collaboration Boosts School Climate, Assessment Options

School leaders are increasing efforts to integrate social-emotional learning into the instructional day to improve learning and positive outcomes for students. Meanwhile, arts educators and advocates are pushing to give students more opportunities for participation in the arts, both during and after school hours. The two interests came together last week for a conversation about how the arts can help schools accomplish SEL goals and serve as a way to measure improvements in school climate at an event sponsored by Turnaround Arts, a project of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Roundup: The Changing Face of School Leadership

Along with approaches to the overall K-12 school model in recent years, approaches to leadership have shifted as well. Principals and building leaders, for example, now often find themselves needing to be instructional leaders, as comfortable with hands-on management of curriculum and instruction as they are with the day-to-day operations of the school. Likewise, classroom educators — especially those wanting to advance, but not necessarily into administration — are increasingly taking on “teacher leader” roles, guiding the development of peers and facilitating bottom-up decision-making. The Education Dive gathered a selection of their coverage to help readers get up to speed with or refresh their knowledge of the most recent school leadership trends.

Surveying the State of Ed Leadership Knowledge

There have been more than 90,000 books, studies, and reports published on education leadership since 2000. Fortunately, three teams of prominent education researchers are sifting through the literature for the benefit of the rest of us. On a Wallace Blog, the researchers discuss their efforts to describe the current state of knowledge in reports covering the following vital topics: the effect of leadership on student achievement; the characteristics of effective principal preparation programs; and the role of the assistant principal.

Assessment System Feedback

Please help the Illinois State Board of Education design an assessment system that best serves our children, teaching staff, and administrators. ISBE has a vision for statewide assessment that creates a healthy balance between federally required year-end summative testing and formative assessments that actively supports teaching and learning. While the federal Every Student Succeeds Act mandates certain summative assessment requirements, we hope to improve our current system in the near term as well as plan and implement long-term system enhancements, based on your input. The vision is to establish an equitable student assessment system aligned to the Illinois Learning Standards that offers educators quick and frequent access to results that can be used to target instruction to student needs during the same year of testing.