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ASCD Partners with U.S. Department of Education and National Board for Professional Teaching Standards to Provide Grants Supporting Teacher Leadership Projects

Alexandria, Va. —ASCD announced today its Teacher Impact Grants program, which will provide direct grants to teacher leaders to fund initiatives that drive transformation for wider impact on improving student outcomes. The program is part of ASCD’s commitment to Teach to Lead, an initiative jointly convened by the U.S. Department of Education, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, and ASCD. News of the grants will be introduced this afternoon at a White House celebration honoring the National and State Teachers of the Year.

“Effective teachers make the difference, and all students should have access to great teaching and to great opportunities in the classroom,” said U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. “Given the proper tools, resources and supports, we know that teachers can transform students’ lives. Many teachers have the real-world knowledge and expertise to develop innovative classroom-, school-, or district-level initiatives to drive positive outcomes for students, but may not have the resources to bring their ideas to fruition. Funding from the Teacher Impact Grants will enable teachers to fund projects and programs that can transform and reshape the learning environment, and improve educational outcomes for students.”

Research consistently states that high-quality teaching leads to better student outcomes. The Teacher Impact Grants will enable teachers to have a greater impact on the quality of teaching in their classrooms, schools, and districts—and assume greater ownership of student outcomes—by using their robust expertise to accelerate positive change in professional learning at all levels. The program is administered by ASCD and financially supported by The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and the Carnegie Corporation of New York. The teacher-led projects funded by the grants will be disseminated as models to the broader field, multiplying their effect on student success.

“The Teacher Impact Grants will provide teacher leaders across the nation opportunities to develop, expand, and evaluate innovative and ambitious projects focused on making their schools and classrooms more effective communities of learning,” said Deborah S. Delisle, ASCD Executive Director and CEO. “Teachers have a hands-on role, each day, in creating high-quality learning environments for all kids and, therefore, know what efforts will lead to further success. We’re excited to introduce these grants, which will empower teacher leaders to launch and execute projects that are teacher-led, teacher-driven, and teacher-approved.”

The application process for ASCD Teacher Impact Grants will open on Monday, May 16, and teacher leaders can submit their proposal at www.ascd.org/teacherimpactgrants. Each application must include an administrator’s signature, ensuring that school leadership is aware of the project’s potential and prepared to provide appropriate support. Grant proposals will be evaluated by a group of peer reviewers selected by ASCD, the U.S. Department of Education, and the NBPTS. Grant amounts will range from $5,000 to $15,000 and will fund teacher leadership projects that will be implemented during the 2016–17 academic year.

“ASCD’s Teacher Impact Grants complement the work we’ve jointly shepherded through Teach to Lead?empowering teachers as leaders. We must do all that we can to elevate teacher expertise, providing resources to help them best meet the needs of their students, their schools, and their districts. The Teacher Impact Grants will be an important lever to move this forward,” said Peggy Brookins, NBCT, President and CEO of the National Board.

The ASCD Teacher Impact Grant program builds on the success of the Teach to Lead initiative, which has received commitments from 120 supporter organizations to date. Teach to Lead aims to cultivate the expertise of teachers to drive transformation in schools, districts, and states, including the development of policies that affect teacher work and student learning. The initiative expands opportunities for teacher leadership by providing resources, facilitating stakeholder consultations, and encouraging professional collaborations to develop and amplify the work of teacher leaders. Learn more at www.teachtolead.org.

Visit www.ascd.org/teacherleadership to learn more about ASCD’s commitment to teacher leadership and to find useful resources. To learn about additional opportunities to build your capacity as a teacher leader, attend the 2016 ASCD Conference on Teaching Excellence, July 8–10 in New Orleans, or become an ASCD member at www.ascd.org/apply.

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