Teacher Leader Endorsement Candidates' Views on Their Experiences with Leadership and Their Self-Reported Styles

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Schools and Districts continue to look for ways to grow their teaching staff’s professionalism, skills, efficacy, and their positive impact on their students and the community. The State of New Jersey Department of Education has even created a teacher evaluation system where teachers must earn effective or highly effective evaluative status in order to stay off the “In need of improvement” lists and face measures to increase their ratings or face the loss of tenure and his or her employment. In New Jersey, teachers have a framework to earn points for their effectiveness rating. The framework is well defined and addresses all areas that impact teachers, the students, the school, and the community. It has been recognized that there are teachers who rise above and excel in certain areas. Not only do they excel, but they demonstrate great leadership and help guide other teachers in improving their practices. In 2018, the State of New Jersey developed a teacher leader endorsement program that would harness, grow, and recognize the leadership the effective and highly effective teachers in New Jersey can bring to their schools. The State created the endorsement program. However, they left it to the school districts to decide if a monetary or higher status position was obtainable from earning the endorsement. The endorsement does not necessarily earn teacher graduate credits, a master’s degree, or a license to do another job within education in New Jersey. The program is still in its infancy as of the year 2020 - 2021. Currently, those interviewed were in the first group of teachers to complete the one-year endorsement program. This research gathers data from teachers currently enrolled in the Teacher Leader Endorsement Program to learn more about their experiences, where they were novice teachers, and now, as experienced teachers, and what led them to enroll in the program. This research takes a dive into the relationship between the teacher and his or her principal, district grooming, school culture, and if monetary compensation must be a factor in having a robust enrollment in this endorsement program.

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  • 02/23/2024
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