HSG Hawaii Teacher Fellows Program


[background music playing] One of the things that when I first started this program, I first started my teaching journey, was I thought that teacher leaders need to be those that were out of the classroom doing things for teachers all the time. And what I’ve realized is that classroom teachers are just as much leaders as anyone else because we can lead from our classrooms. What it means is bringing people together. It means collaborating. It means bringing different stakeholders. That includes the principal. That includes the vice principal, anybody within the school that makes an impact. And also student voice. That’s very important. What I love about Hope Street is the fact that we have brand new teachers, we have seasoned teachers, we have resource teachers or classroom teachers. So there’s such a variety that there’s a place for everybody. It’s more about the desire to be solutions-oriented, to engage in practices and policies. Yeah, I think to develop a solutions-oriented culture in the classroom, in the school, in a district, a lot of it really is about gaining new knowledge about how systems work. And that’s been a huge thing for me in Hope Street is really starting to understand what the D.O.E does and doesn’t do, what the B.O.E. does and doesn’t do, what our legislators do. And starting to realize that if I can use my energy and direct it into the right places that things actually do change, and people are listening. One of my absolute best experiences as a teacher leader with Hope Street so far has been the experience of conducting focus groups. Facilitating, it felt really amazing I think to be able to show people the power that comes from their collaboration as a group. And it it wasn’t daunting because it was really just about deep listening. I think that there’s one power I’ve really come to… appreciate about the teacher leader role. So being a neighbor Fellow it’s helped going to the Capital seeing, going to the Rep, and seeing how a bill becomes policy, and all the stages. So for me as a teacher, it’s nice to see all the stages that a bill goes through. Hope Street opened doors for me to connect to people who make those policies. And it just allowed me to find that human connection to why things are created. It opened so many new doors and new learning for me about how… what it… what it means to educate our kids. [female voice] The fellowship again has been such an instrumental part of my growth and again expanding and… I’m just so appreciative of the teachers and how we’ve been able to support each other. And I would love to see the Fellowship be even bigger because, you know, to reach more teachers and to have this experience.

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

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