Mrs. Clements and I had the pleasure of attending the Ohio Literacy Academy in mid-March. World renown literacy experts led us through keynotes and workshops to help us think and reflect about the reading instruction happening across Ohio. The ultimate takeaway is that no program, curriculum, or initiative is going to increase student achievement on its own; you are. While the curriculum, programs, and initiatives give us the framework and help push us, your daily decisions on the direction the lesson goes and the engagement of your students is what drives achievement.
One of my favorite (and probably the most humorous) speakers was Dr. Anita Archer. Archer’s keynote on “The Magic is in the Instruction” was a powerful reminder of the “magic” you do every day! One of her quotes was by Wiliam (2018) and stated, “The quality of teachers is the single most important factor in the educational system.” She reworded this to say, “The quality of TEACHING is the single most important factor in the educational system.
A student who is placed with high performing teachers over three years will move from the 50th to the 90th percentile. Likewise, a student placed with low performing teachers over the course of three years will regress from the 50th to the 37th percentile (Sanders & Rivers, 1996). This sums up the work of Barber and Mourshed (2007) when they stated, “The quality of an education system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers.” TV continues to rise to the occasion to meet the needs of a diverse body of students because of our staff; your dedication, passion, and willingness to continue to do better does not go unnoticed.
As we spend the next few weeks in testing mode, thank you for knowing that a test score does not define who a student is. More importantly, our job is about setting high expectations, building relationships, and providing support to help all students succeed.
Teach with Passion. Manage with Compassion. The magic is in the instruction!