26 Aug Independent Evaluation Highlights Positive Impacts of Hope Street Group Kentucky State Teacher Fellows Program
August 26, 2014
With milestones including engaging over 20 percent of Kentucky’s K‑12 teachers and informing the implementation of the Professional Growth and Effectiveness System (PGES) and the Kentucky Core Academic Standards, education experts and program participants interviewed deemed the program “an overwhelming success.”
“What happened in Kentucky over the past year was impressive. The fellows we selected clearly understood their charge, embraced the task in front of them and ultimately gave our partners a real-time glimpse into classrooms to see what the reforms they have worked so hard to implement look like in practice,” said Dan Cruce, Hope Street Group’s Vice President of Education.
Now in its second year, the program continues with 21 outstanding Kentucky teachers. The fellowship empowers its participants to collect feedback and solutions from thousands of teachers to inform decision-making at state and district levels. Partners for this work include the Kentucky Department of Education, the Kentucky Education Association and the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence.
“KEA applauds Hope Street Group’s self-examination and desire to become even better at helping promote teacher participation in the issues facing public schools today,” said Mary Ann Blankenship, Executive Director of the Kentucky Education Association.
“It’s been an amazing experience,” said teacher fellow Sarah Yost, an English Language Arts Lead Teacher for Jefferson County Public Schools. “After my work with Hope Street Group, I feel more empowered and better respected as an educator. It makes me feel like I can effect real change without leaving the classroom, and my leadership has inspired others to do the same.”
The evaluation also recommended areas for improvement, including expanding and refocusing aspects of fellow training and creating an explicit strategy to leverage online network tools. With the assistance of partners such as 270 Strategies and Purpose, Hope Street Group is actively addressing these aspects of its program and enacted a number of recommended changes last month at its summer teacher fellow convening.
Hope Street Group is currently beginning the second year of its Kentucky State Teacher Fellows Program and launching the first year of its Hawaii State Teacher Fellows Program. Additional work is underway to expand the program to up to four additional states in 2015.
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Hope Street Group is a national nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to expanding economic opportunity and prosperity for all Americans. For more information, see: www.hopestreetgroup.org