Shoulder to Shoulder for Life-Changing Impact
Within schools, teachers have an unmatched influence on students’ lives. But too often, their own learning opportunities fall short of what they need to succeed.
We help districts and school systems build on the passion of educators with proven practices that offer students real opportunity and get real results. Whether you’re looking to adopt a new curriculum, develop your instructional leaders, or expand your professional learning offerings, we can help you build a thriving instructional system that you can sustain without us.
Students prove what’s possible when they have fair opportunities and strong support. They depend on teachers who deeply understand their content, who they are, and what they’ll need to be ready for the future. All of this takes intentional practice and a foundation of strong materials.
Our partnerships focus on key areas of instructional leadership and strategy that ensure life-changing practices flourish from the classroom all the way up to the central office. Through customized supports that include strategic advising, ongoing curriculum-based professional learning design, and coaching, we’ll help you make your best even better.
Educators build the knowledge and skills they need to foster skillful and joyful literacy with attention to students’ diverse backgrounds and strengths and with a focus on closing within-school opportunity gaps. Teachers will be able to use high-quality curriculum to develop students’ ability to understand, think critically about, and respond to complex texts. Students will also build awareness of themselves and their world through reading and writing.
Educators build the knowledge and skills to ignite skillful and joyful mathematical thinking and problem-solving with attention to students’ diverse backgrounds, strengths, and needs. Teachers help students develop the tools to apply analytical concepts and problem-solving skills to understand and engage with their world.
Leaders work toward key actions they should take to build classrooms and school communities that support the success of all students and adults. Leaders learn to develop and maintain systems that focus on continuous learning around belonging and using an equity lens when analyzing data, facilitating instruction, and developing systems.
Leaders establish structures that foster healthy peer collaboration and that enable transformative professional learning. Four key ideas drive deep and continuous learning and growth: shared vision and ownership, evidence-based decision-making, setting goals, and collaborative practice aligned to goals.
Build Continuous Learning Into Your District's DNA.
Teachers want the support to build upon their passion with vetted materials and proven practices so all their students become confident, lifelong learners—no matter what they look like, where they come from, or how much money their family has.
Through a mix of customized support options including weekly professional learning and collaboration time, curriculum internalization and cohort-based learning, coaching, and progress monitoring, we help educators build on strengths and elevate their teaching no matter whether they’re in year one or year thirty.
One of our specialties is designing best-in-class professional learning resources that respond to the curricula teachers are using every day while building replicable habits for excellent instruction. While we design for and prioritize highly-rated curricula, we continually explore ways to strengthen how those materials relate to students’ lives and provide windows into other experiences. Sample topics for addressing the intersection of academics and belonging are listed below:
- “Close Reading”
- “Why Complex Text Matters”
- “Culminating Questions and Tasks to Assess Understanding”
- “Sequences of Text-Focused Questions and Tasks to Build Understanding”
- “Text-Based Collaborative Conversations”
- “Anticipating, Monitoring, and Probing Student Understanding of Complex Texts”
- “Scaffolds for Complex Texts”
- “Text-Based Writing”
- “Measurement Deep Dive”
“Fractions Deep Dive”
“Coherence Within Grade”
“Coherence Across Grades”
“Standards of Math Practice”
- “Identifying Rigor in Standards and Tasks”
- “Rigor in Curriculum Tasks”
- “Ratios, Proportional Reasoning, and Functions”
- “Numbers, Operations, and Algebraic Thinking”
School systems aspire for thriving schools full of passionate teachers who deeply understand what students need to learn and how best to teach it. Since our founding, we’ve worked to boost the instructional leadership present at all levels of a school system so support for strong teaching lives where it matters most.
Whether it’s developing teacher leaders or sharpening the skills of content leaders within central office, we know how to build capacity for world-class teaching. When you take the passion and experience of teachers, then add relevant support, academic focus, and shared learning and planning, you build a foundation that can adapt to evolving standards and student needs. We’ve helped school systems achieve lasting change so students and teachers thrive today and beyond.
Strengthening the System
Unlike “one-size-fits-all” professional development, our approach takes context, culture, and resources necessary for lasting change into account. As we partner, we collaboratively monitor and build six conditions that are key to strong professional learning systems.
We catalyze change—not on a scattershot basis—but while intentionally giving partners the tools to lead improvement on their own. We can help you set goals, define leadership roles, design world-class resources, and provide impactful coaching, but the real difference is showing you how to do it yourself. We are partners who have been in educators’ and students’ shoes, and we won’t stop until equity is the reality.
Take the First Step
Do you have an idea for partnership? Get in touch with us!
Learn how you can join a network of school districts across the country that are working to prove what’s possible for students.
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