Newark, N.J. –Newark Public Schools Superintendent Cami Anderson hosted a reception last evening celebrating the district’s highly effective teachers and teacher leaders and highlighting opportunities for teachers to continue growing and leading change in Newark Public Schools.
“Every day we are working to raise the bar for Newark’s students by supporting excellence in the classroom. We believe that recruiting, supporting and developing, and celebrating and rewarding the absolute best educators will unlock the extraordinary potential of our students and ensure they are college and career ready,” said State Superintendent Cami Anderson. “The passion and commitment of everyone in this room is critical to realizing our goal of 100 excellent schools in Newark – and we are inspired by your hard work.”
In addition to celebrating highly effective teachers, the District also celebrated the innovative Leadership Institute for Teacher Teams (LIFTT) program, which supports ongoing, job-embedded professional development to teachers by teachers .
“As a teacher with over 10 years of experience, I know firsthand the challenges that exist in the classroom,” said Amy Panitch, a Newark LIFTT Teacher. “As a teacher leader participating in the LIFTT program, I’m able to work with my colleagues to implement highly effective instructional strategies that put students first and prepare them for college and career readiness.”
The district also recognized their partners in the district’s work of both recruiting and building great teachers. Specifically, the district acknowledged a new $5 million grant the U.S. Department of Education provided to Montclair State University, in partnership with the district, for a five-year urban teacher residency. Additionally, the District announced a partnership with the Relay Graduate School of Education (Relay GSE), naming it a district-approved program.
As part of the ground-breaking teacher contract, teachers completing a district-approved master’s program that will help teachers support their students in meeting the demands of the Common Core State Standards are entitled to total reward compensation of up to $20,000: $10,000 to be received upon completion of the program, and $10,000 to be received upon completion of an additional three years of service to NPS. Relay’s new one-year graduate program or two-year Master’s Degree program is just one of the many innovative practices in the labor agreement.
“Since Relay’s inception we have been eager and excited to expand our work with teachers in our Newark district schools,” said James Verrilli, Dean of the Relay GSE programs in Newark. “We love Newark, teaching and teachers, and we believe education is a powerful tool for social justice for the children of Newark. We understand that great teachers are developed, not born, and that every teacher has the capacity to be great.”
The event included various speakers, including students, who discussed both the work the District is doing with teachers in Newark and the tremendous value of our highly effective teachers.