Developing Education Talent Pipelines for Charter Schools
Strong teachers and leaders are undoubtedly critical to the success of any school system; research has repeatedly suggested that school leadership is second only behind classroom instruction in its impact on student learning. The autonomous nature of charter schools makes the need for strong school leadership even more crucial. Charter school advocates who are trying to increase the number of quality charter schools and replicate high-performing schools must consider not only how they are going to retain talented individuals, but also how to support a talent pipeline.
A recent report by Public Impact, with the help of Foundation Strategy Group (a social impact consulting firm), identifies six indicators that have the biggest impact on recruiting and retaining highly effective teachers and leaders. The report draws from two cities, New Orleans and Indianapolis, to demonstrate how these indicators are being used successfully in practice:
- A facilitator that focuses specifically on the talent pipeline: A strong facilitator that is a locally-based entity can help to identify gaps in the talent supply for charters and determine ways to fill those gaps. Examples of facilitators include New Schools for New Orleans and the Mind Trust in Indianapolis.
- Local and national talent providers: Organizations such as Teach For America, The New Teacher Project, and New Leaders for New Schools provide help in recruiting highly effective teachers and leaders, and also provide them with ongoing development and support.
- Political support: Having political supporters who will advocate on behalf of human resource policies and equal funding for charter schools is a crucial piece in order to create a sustainable pipeline of talent.
Both New Orleans and Indianapolis are utilizing a combination of the indicators mentioned above and have seen tremendous results. In 2011 Indianapolis charter school students were outperforming their peers in traditional schools. New Orleans charter schools continually outperform district-run schools, and over a dozen of their charter schools have demonstrated exemplary growth, the state’s highest rating.
Creating a teacher and leader pipeline is a difficult task and one that Ohio must think more seriously about developing. Ohio also faces challenges such as gaining political support, recruiting national talent providers to the state, and raising philanthropic support.
Education Talent Pipelines for Charter Schools"
Daniela Doyle and Lucy Steiner
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