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ASCD Teacher Impact Grants (TIGs) provide funding and support directly to teachers for promising teacher-led, administrator-supported ideas, programs, or initiatives to improve education. These grants allow teachers to develop and execute projects that can serve as models to be replicated and scaled, while also cultivating teachers' expertise to position them as leaders driving transformation in schools, districts, and states.
The program is part of Teach to Lead, an initiative jointly convened by the U.S. Department of Education, ASCD, and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. The Teacher Impact Grants are administered by ASCD and financially supported by The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and Carnegie Corporation of New York.
Each project will be planned and executed during the 2016–17 academic year and is targeted to specific strategic goals. Awardees will receive ongoing support from ASCD staff and will provide detailed progress updates each quarter.
Crab Orchard Houses | $15,000 award | Crab Orchard Elementary School
The project will meet the needs of students by implementing a "house team" concept that will provide in-school assistance to students who require additional supports for education and pro-social behaviors, which they may not receive at home. House teams will address needs such as conflict resolution, goal setting and planning, active listening, time management, and bullying; will provide opportunities for leadership; and will reflect a blended model of adults and students from all grade levels, K-5, on each team to ensure a setting representative of a home, such as the dynamic between older and younger siblings.
Team Member: Dana Bullock
Strategic Goals: Ask teacher leaders to embrace and lead necessary reform change, such as changes to existing structures and mindsets; and develop nascent ideas by teacher leaders into innovative, executable logic models and action plans.
Parent Empowerment Project | $5,000 award | Tolleson Elementary School District 17
The project will provide purposeful home school connections that will empower parents to actively participate in their student's learning because we know that parents are their child's first and best teacher. This will entail a series of eight monthly family trainings connected to a power standard geared toward school readiness for our early learners provided by our preschool educators.
Follow our Lead: Mentoring Maestros | $15,000 award | Onslow County Schools
The project is designed to empower experienced Onslow County elementary music teachers to mentor music teachers in the district who have fewer than three years of experience and teachers who transfer to K–5 music with under two years of elementary teaching experience. The concept is to use the expertise of three Onslow County music teachers, with more than 40 years of combined experience, as music mentors and leaders to develop a high-quality teaching network within the county that will offer support, instructional assistance, and encouragement, ensuring that all students receive a first-rate music education.
Team Members: Melinda Mauter and Pam Day
Strategic Goal: Motivate and mentor new educators through leadership opportunities and collaboration with fellow educators.
Learning without Limits: The Implementation of a Teacher Cohort to Shift Toward Highly Personalized Student Learning | $15,000 award | Oshkosh Area School District
The project will involve two cohorts of teachers at Oshkosh West High School who will work to engage students and improve learning by meeting the diverse needs of all students, including the school's most vulnerable student populations. As part of the project, cohort members will participate in instruction coaching and collaborative meetings with colleagues, and host and participate in site visits to build a network of informed educators to transform the traditional classroom experience.
Team Members: Kristi Levy and Heather Kangas
Strategic Goals: Identify teacher leaders to build the solutions necessary to change and strengthen the teaching profession, and drive transformation in schools, districts and states; and ask teacher leaders to embrace and lead necessary reform change, such as changes to existing structures and mindsets.
Building Capacity for Sustainable Co-Teaching Practices | $15,000 award | Washburn High School
The project will provide opportunities for teachers to learn new strategies for collaborative instruction by observing other co-teachers in action, engaging in professional learning through conferences and research-based readings and dedicated time to establish and reflect on co-teaching relationships.
Strategic Goals: Motivate and mentor new educators through leadership opportunities and collaboration with fellow educators; and leverage teacher leadership opportunities and structures for recruiting and retaining talented and highly effective educators.
Makerspace: Design Thinking, Innovation, and Student Engagement | $10,000 award | Belle Chase Academy
The project focuses on makerspaces, which help foster the skills necessary for students to participate in a global society, and will assist in the development of a school-based team of educators who will champion the culture of a makerspace and facilitate its use by students and staff alike, both during and after the school day. Additionally the grant will help Mattesky offer workshops to teachers quarterly on how to integrate the makerspace and design thinking into their already established curriculum.
Peer Coaching to Implement Effective Teaching Strategies | $10,000 award | Maize Unified School District 266
The project will create a teacher-led coaching model that will allow teachers to collaborate with certified math trainers and master teachers to help build conceptual understanding of grade-level standards.
Team Member: Angela Knapp
Strategic Goals: Ask teacher leaders to embrace and lead necessary reform change, such as changes to existing structures and mindsets; and empower teacher leaders to collaborate with administrators to develop distributive leadership.
Breaking the Status Quo: Building Positive School Culture through Impactful School Climate Initiatives | $15,000 award | Buncombe County Schools
The project will have two main components: (1) The implementation of a model, named "The Link Crew High School Orientation and Transition Model," designed to create a shared experience for freshmen, upperclassmen, and staff, where a group of upperclassmen will serve as mentors and tour guides to help the freshmen understand how to be successful at the high school level; and (2) an overhaul of the In-School Suspension program (ISS) to transform ISS from a traditional punitive intervention to a non-punitive, strengths-based, educational setting based on Ross Greene's "Collaborative & Proactive Solutions (CPS)."
Team Member: Brian Powchak
Strategic Goals: Identify teacher leaders to build the solutions necessary to change and strengthen the profession, and drive transformation in schools, districts and states; and ask teacher leaders to embrace and lead necessary reform change, such as changes to existing structures and mindsets.
Professional Development Models to Improve Religious Literacy and Culturally Responsive Practices | $15,000 award | Montgomery County Public Schools
In 2015, Murray developed a pioneering professional development course for educators that provides educators with high quality and specific training in the areas of religious literacy and cultural responsiveness toward religious minorities. In addition, the course provides rich, in-person experiences with a broad number of community-based faith traditions and thus serves the important purpose of integrating diverse local populations with education professionals. This project will expand the course to three other school districts with state-recognized educators who will pilot and then refine the course so that the model can be broadly shared.
Team Members: Seth Brady and John Camardella
Strategic Goals: Identify teacher leaders to build the solutions necessary to change and strengthen the profession, and drive transformation in schools, districts and states; and develop nascent ideas by teacher leaders into innovative, executable logic models and action plans.
Employing a Video Lesson Study Approach in Building Capacity for Teachers Improving Speaking and Listening Skills in a Career Technical Education Medical Pathway | $5,000 award | Los Angeles Unified School District
The project will fund video capture systems to record student speaking and listening instructional activities. It will also use a video lesson study protocol to examine the procedures of three teachers integrating oral communication into high school English language arts and social studies classrooms over a one-year period.
Team Members: Duncan Scrymgeour and Holly Avdul
Empowering Teacher Leaders through Reflection on Video Taped Instruction | $10,000 award | Ranchos Elementary School
The project will create vertical alignment among teachers and decrease divisions between departments by empowering teachers to analyze videotaped instruction in four cross-departmental teams, including special education, physical education, and art teachers. In this example of job-embedded professional learning, a group of 20 teachers will record their lessons to demonstrate a particular instructional focus, and five teacher leaders will be trained to guide discussion and analysis. As a result of this rigorous reflective process, the participating teachers will learn to make thoughtful decisions that improve student learning.
Team Members: Richard Quintana and Andrea Trujillo
Fauquier County Public Schools (FCPS) Collaborative Teacher Leaders | $10,000 award | Fauquier County Public Schools
The project will establish a collaborative teacher leader strand within FCPS's current professional development program to enhance communication and instructional practices between the district's five middle schools. Cross-school collaboration currently occurs only informally, but this project will add specific opportunities for teachers to collaborate across buildings to problem-solve key instructional topics identified by supervisors and teacher leaders in response to student need. To sustain the success of this collaboration, subject area supervisors and teacher leaders will identify new critical topics each year.
Scratching the Surface of Building with Code to Develop Reform through Distributive Leadership | $5,000 award | South Fremont High School
The project will accelerate South Fremont High's transition to a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art/Design, and Math) school by expanding schoolwide distributed leadership and the school's collective engineering mindset in order to introduce the concepts of coding that will increase students' opportunities to succeed in a world that increasingly uses coding as a language. To make this effort a success, a quarter of the teachers at the school have committed to learning the Scratch coding language and then teaching it to students as an initial step in exposing students to coding across the curriculum.
Team Members: Bonnie Warne and Larry Bennett
THE. BEST. TEACHER. PD. EVER! | $10,000 award | Peoria Unified School District
The project will employ professional development model that will use collaboration, engagement, support through coaching, professional learning communities, and reflection. It will seek to create an effective and meaningful support system for ongoing growth and development, enhance skills through interaction and peer engagement, and model and celebrate successes.
Team Members: Cheryl Mertz and Jean Cole
Strategic Goal: Ask teacher leaders to embrace and lead necessary reform change, such as changes to existing structures and mindsets.
Teaching STEM Through Professional Learning Communities | $10,000 award | Elwood School District
The project will support the adoption of the New York State Science Learning Standards (NYSSLS) by providing teachers with rich professional development regarding the standards, formatting new science curriculum maps, uniform lesson structure, and STEM-based inquiry labs and experiments. The grant will serve the nearly 950 students who attend both Harley Avenue Primary School and James H. Boyd Intermediate School by providing them with innovative STEM equipment required to enrich their participation in engineering lessons and projects.
Team Members: Linda Scotto, Liz Held, and Beth Noon
Strategic Goals: Identify teacher leaders to build the solutions necessary to change and strengthen the profession, and drive transformation in schools, districts and states; and empower teacher leaders to collaborate with administrators to develop distributive leadership.
Teacher Talk: Leveraging One-to-One Through the Power of Ten | $15,000 award | Ridgeview Charter Middle School
The project will create a 30-hour Professional Learning Unit (PLU) course that will train teachers to systematically address problems of classroom practice and facilitate critical conversations on the delivery of personalized, rigorous literacy instruction. The course will build on professional learning and progress from the 2015–16 year—when students received iPads and teachers attended workshops on integrating the technology into classroom instruction—by supporting the delivery of the Georgia Standards of Excellence through common International Baccalaureate® (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) unit plans, transfering new literacy pedagogy, and experimenting with iPad-based personalized learning strategies.
Team Members: Eryka Murray, Caroline Boddiford, Madeline Hagaman, Kathlenn Mccaffery, and Oliver Blackwell
Literacy-Based Student Engagement | $10,000 award | Running Brook Elementary School
The project will help English language arts (ELA) teachers learn to design lessons that appeal to student engagement by providing opportunities for extension, enrichment, and inquiry. Through the creation and development of a high-quality, teacher-led professional learning community, teachers will become empowered to implement highly engaging strategies, routines, and texts in their lessons, which will develop independent readers and writers and increase the level of rigor and academic standards in ELA classrooms. Increased engagement will help students retain information and transfer their learning to new contexts.
Team Member: Jeanette Swank
If you have questions about Teacher Impact Grants, call ASCD toll-free at 1-800-933-2723 or contact us by e-mail.
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