IPS building career pathways for teachers

Teachers & Principals | 01/14/2016

Sena A. Townsend
IPS Director of Special Projects for HR

Sena A. Townsend is involved in several Human Capital strategic initiatives at Indianapolis Public Schools.

Through a bold and innovative academic and talent recruitment strategy to place the best teachers in some of our traditionally hard-to-staff schools, Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) will be extending the reach of excellent teachers and their teams to more students through creative and competitive staffing models called Opportunity Culture. Stipends range from an additional $6,800 to $18,300 for teacher leader roles with differing levels of responsibility, all of which allow teachers to lead while continuing to teach.

Many teachers are often looking for growth opportunities in their career, but don’t want to leave the classroom. This opportunity provides excellent teachers with opportunities to lead teams of teachers and reach more students. And the more we can extend the reach of our best teachers, the more students and other teachers benefit.

IPS will pilot the Opportunity Culture models in six of our Transformation Zone schools on the west side of Indianapolis during the 2016-2017 school year. The applicant pool for Opportunity Culture teacher leader positions will open in February 2016. Early applicants will have an advantage in what we expect to be a large, competitive pool. We are looking for teachers who feel very driven to have a bigger, positive impact.

The school design teams are reallocating their schools’ budgets to pay the stipends, which will make the roles more permanent than roles funded with temporary grants. The teams are also changing school schedules so teachers and team leaders can co-plan instruction, co-teach and help each other improve every week during school hours.

For these new positions, IPS is seeking applicants with an outstanding track record of student learning in their own classrooms. Multi-Classroom Leaders also need to demonstrate leadership potential and a commitment to helping their peers achieve professional excellence. Certified teachers with a performance rating of Effective or higher for the last three years are eligible to apply. Applicants do not need to be current employees of the pilot schools or IPS.

Find more information online or email townsends@myips.org with questions.

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