Empowering Educators: Teacher-Leadership for Catholic Schools
Teacher leaders play a critical role in determining school culture, supporting new teacher success, and improving student learning outcomes. With this in mind, the Roche Center created the Empowering Educators professional development initiative, which develops and supports current and aspiring teacher leaders in the core areas of understanding principles of adult learning, creating a culture of learning, mentoring new teachers, and leading initiatives in their schools. Successful school cultures are ones in which everyone teaches and learns. For schools to be their best, leadership cannot be left to the principal alone. Distributed leadership is necessary. Over the course of this program, teacher leaders from Catholic schools hone the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary to help transform their schools.
At a Glance
Empowering Educators Professional Development Structure
In Summer 2023, participants come together on the Boston College campus for a two-day seminar in which they:
- examine distributed leadership theories and models of implementation
- develop a shared understanding of the role of a teacher-leader and a vision for this role in their school community
- utilize the NESBECS and Frameworks for Effective Teaching to develop an inventory of effective instructional practices to mentor and support new teachers
- utilize a needs assessment to determine where leadership gifts can be best used in the participant’s school community
- determine a leadership project, initiative, or plan for the school year in consultation with school leadership
In June 2024, participants gather again on BC's campus for a two-day symposium and celebration to:
- synthesize learning of the year
- engage in personal and collective reflection
- celebrate and share the leadership initiatives or projects engaged in throughout the year
Participants will engage in short readings prior to monthly virtual sessions to engage in the work of teacher leadership. In these meetings, participants will:
- understand the role of emotional intelligence in an individual, as well as the collective emotional intelligence of a team or staff
- develop a culture for learning among adult learners
- build a skills toolkit, such as making and implementing an effective agenda
- learn effective communication skills
- gather resources for healthy conflict and growth
- utilize data to inform instruction in a classroom and learning in a school
- develop a roadmap for supporting and mentoring new teachers
- renew personal commitment to Catholic education and personal spiritual development
During the fall and spring semesters, participants partner with a leadership coach to assess individual leadership gifts, talents, strengths, and needs in order to support their development and work as teacher-leaders.
The Empowering Educators professional development initiative is designed for PK-12 Catholic school teacher-leaders.
- Summer 2023: Professional development participants will meet in-person on the Boston College campus from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- Participants will meet in teacher-leadership teams and in professional learning communities (PLCs) monthly (September 2023 - May 2024). Dates will be determined based on participant availability.
- Participants will engage in two individualized coaching sessions, one in fall 2023 and one in spring 2024.
- June 2024: Professional development participants will meet in-person again for a two-day symposium and celebration held at Boston College to conclude the experience.
The cost of the Empowering Educators professional development initiative is $2,500 per teacher.
Registration is limited to 15 schools per year.
Registration will open soon with a deadline of June 1, 2023.
About the Facilitator: Melodie Wyttenbach, Ph.D.
Dr. Melodie Wyttenbach is director of the Roche Center for Catholic Education, Boston College. Melodie has served in various leadership roles, always in service to Catholic schools. Most recently she was a faculty member and academic director for the Remick Leadership Program at the University of Notre Dame, and prior to that, served in urban Catholic schools as president, principal, and teacher. Melodie presents nationally on topics such as Catholic School Governance and Effective Board Management, Strategic Planning, Development and Enrollment Management Strategies, and Making Schools Culturally Competent for New and Existing Latino Families. She has a doctorate in educational leadership and policy analysis from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.