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By Celine Coggins & Heather Peske
Education Week, January 19, 2011

Lesson Plan in Boston Schools: Don’t Go It Alone
By Mike Winerip
New York Times, August 8, 2010


Indianapolis teachers play a role in advancing Indiana Teacher Quality Reform Bill

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Celine Coggins

Indianapolis teachers play a role in advancing Indiana Teacher Quality Reform Bill

 Cohort of Teach Plus Teaching Policy Fellows advocated for reforms in layoff and evaluation methods in Indiana

We are pleased to announce that SB 1, an omnibus teacher quality reform package, has become law in Indiana. It transforms teacher evaluation and licensure, adds new teacher leadership roles in the evaluation process, and requires performance—rather than seniority—as the basis of teacher layoff decisions. Today Indiana has made great strides in ensuring higher standards for the education of students across the state.
Teach Plus Policy Fellows—all current teachers—have played a key leadership role in advancing the core reforms in SB 1 over the past two years and, importantly, have demonstrated that many teachers support reforms that better serve children.
Teach Plus Policy Fellows were first to draw attention to the problem of seniority-based layoffs more than a year ago. Their advocacy led to the formation of a task force on layoffs and, ultimately, a change to the Indianapolis Public Schools teachers’ contract. The contract provision—adopted in spring, 2010—introduced performance into the decision-making process when staff reductions take place. The new provision has saved the jobs of large numbers of high-performing young teachers this spring, but it only applied to teachers in the first five years of their careers. The new law requires that all layoff decisions will be made in the best interest of students.
Teach Plus has ensured that current teachers were at the table as the details of the proposed legislation were being developed. Fellows served on both the State Superintendent’s Education Reform Cabinet and State Evaluation Cabinet. In addition, we convened opportunities for larger groups of teachers to meet directly with state legislators.
Teach Plus teachers have kept a sustained press on reforming teacher evaluation and layoffs by:

The mission of Teach Plus is to ensure that urban students have greater access to effective, experienced teachers. Today, we believe that is more possible than ever in Indiana.

Teach Plus is a national non-profit based in Boston whose mission is to improve outcomes for urban children by ensuring that a greater proportion of students have access to effective, experienced teachers. Teach Plus runs three programs designed to place teacher leaders at the center of reform: Teaching Policy Fellows, the T+ Network, and T3: Turnaround Teacher Teams. The programs focus on demonstrably effective teachers who want to continue classroom teaching while also expanding their impact as leaders in their schools and in national, state, and district policy. Teach Plus began with 16 founding teachers from urban district and charter schools in Greater Boston. Since its inception as a non-profit in August 2009, Teach Plus has grown to a network of more than 2,500 reform-minded teachers in five major cities across the country.


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