Center for Teaching Quality

by  John Holland / March 28, 2016

In 2011 I wrote an open letter to the new president of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS), the late Ron Thorpe. The title of the post was, “What new CEO of the NBPTS, Ron Thorpe, should know and be able to do.” The title of this post is a reference to the key phrase that has been used to elevate the teaching profession through NBPTS. It was also a slight poke because I had hoped NBPTS would select a National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT) for the position. They didn’t but through this letter I hoped to communicate my personal feelings about the power of the NBCT process and the weight of the position as a leader of leaders to the incoming CEO. I didn’t expect him to reply to me but, when he did I knew he was the right person for the job.

This past weekend I moderated a panel on brain science and accomplished early childhood teaching. The panelists included Ellen Galinsky, Steven Hicks, and Jonathan Gillentine. The session went well, drawing over 70 participants in a small room at the Marriott Wardman Park in Washington D.C. instead of the Washington Convention Center. There seemed to be as many teacher leadership sessions as research and policy sessions this year which was inspiring. I am still hoping that the next conference will include a slate of peer reviewed sessions to highlight the work that is being done by NBCTs across the country — so that they can share their transformative expertise as teacher leaders. This step would also spread groundwork of the conference among teacher leaders while enhancing ownership of the conference and the profession.

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