The Savannah Chatham County Public School System (SCCPSS) has made a commitment to teacher leader development.
At the school level, SCCPSS teacher leaders assume a wide range of roles to support school and student success. Whether these roles are assigned formally or shared informally, they build the entire school's capacity to improve. Because teachers can lead in a variety of ways, many teachers can serve as leaders among their peers. Regardless of the roles they assume, teacher leaders help to shape the culture of their schools, improve student learning, and influence practice among their peers.
Teacher leaders are selected for the Accelerated Teacher Leadership Program (ATLP) once a year program. The program initiative lasts for five months each school year. Principals recommend teacher leaders from the school level by August. The names of the proposed teacher leaders are submitted to Executive Directors at every level. Each year a cohort of 30 teacher leader candidates are selected by Executive Directors from principal recommendations to participate in the initiative.
The purpose of the Accelerated Teacher Leadership Program (ATLP) is threefold:
- To recruit, develop, and retain an effective pool of teacher leaders who are viable candidates for administrative positions, and are better prepared; as a result of their fully engaged participation in leadership program opportunities, and thereby able to apply for administrative positions at the school and/or district-level from a more “informed” knowledge base.
To provide learning experiences that will make available, the opportunity to gain knowledge and skills that cannot be acquired in college courses alone.
To help bridge the gap between theory and practice for teacher leaders who aspire to better understand how administrative roles and responsibilities at the school and/or district levels work collaboratively to have a positive impact on teaching and learning.
The Program will not serve as a guarantee for placement, but will provide the learning experiences that are necessary for teacher leader development and will assist them in their preparation for leadership opportunities. Teaching methods include role-playing activities, panel discussions, collaborative adult learning, and advanced endorsement studies. After completing the program, teacher leader candidates will:
Become more familiar with the roles and responsibilities of district administrators.
Become more familiar with the roles and responsibilities of school administrators.
Practice, develop, and implement change theories.
Gain a better understanding of the application process through skills practice.
See the work at the school level from a more informed place.
Gain a better understanding of the relationship between the school and district divisions.
Have the opportunity to acquire and/or refine leadership skills.
Become more informed about the teacher and leadership evaluation process.
Meet division heads and district department members and gain a better understanding of their scope of work.
Accelerated Teacher Leadership Program (ATLP)
The Accelerated Teacher Leadership Program (ATLP) started October 2014 and continued through February 2015 with a half day program. The second cohort program, October 2015- February 2016, has evolved into a full day program experience based on input received from teacher leader participants. Teachers who are selected to participate in this program must make a commitment (on the front-end) regarding their participation in this rigorous and time consuming initiative.
ATLP Cohort - Candidate Recommendation
Teacher leaders will be selected by their principal or district level administrator's recommendation. The names of teacher leader candidates are submitted to their respective Executive Directors. Executive Directors recommend 30-35
How are Teacher Leaders selected at the school level?
Teacher leaders – are current or former classroom teachers who have TKES performance at the Proficient or Exemplary Levels, work effectively with other classroom teachers as a mentor, served in other school level leadership roles, and/or served in leadership roles along with other educators in the school or district.
Teacher leaders are recommended to Executive Directors by their principals. Each year Executive Directors select a cohort group of 30-35 teacher leaders to participate in the five month Program.
Principals have extensive knowledge of their ongoing successful, effective work ethics and best practices that impacts teaching, learning, student growth and student achievement. The process of selecting teacher leaders will include, but is not limited to the criteria shared below.
School Level Selection Criteria:
1. Demonstrated Job Skills. The individual has demonstrated skills and best practices (beyond the
classroom) as indicated in the Teacher Keys Effectiveness System and noted as exemplary on the
2. Observable Behavioral Competencies. The individual has demonstrated that (s)he
typically/continually uses behavioral competencies—the habits of behavior that help predict how the
individual will perform in a job—at the high performance levels needed to be effective in the
3. Prior Evidence of Success. The individual has proven that (s)he can achieve and continually
achieves outcome goals correlated with success in new roles (e.g., high-progress student learning
outcomes, improved conditions within the school such as behavior and attendance, contributions to
the work of other teachers, mentoring teachers in the school building and beyond, providing
professional development for other teachers, etc.).
The ATLP Experience
Collaborative Cohort Group Presentations
Implementation of a Performance Based Learning Projects (PBL) at the school level
Opportunities to Shadow APs (in school and outside of the assigned school)
End of the Program Reflective Essay (submitted and professional development feedback will be provided)
Examples of teacher leader roles:
(Reference: Ten Roles for Teacher Leaders Cindy Harrison and Joellen Killion
September 2007 | Volume 65 | Number 1
Teachers as Leaders Pages 74-77
1. Resource Provider
2. Instructional Specialist
3. Curriculum Specialist
4. Classroom Supporter
5. Learning Facilitator
7. School Leader
8. Data Coach
9. Catalyst for Change