New Visions for Public Schools (New Visions) is providing much-needed support to New York City’s (NYC) secondary teachers through vetted and adaptable instructional materials to help students, many reading below grade level, meet rigorous standards. New Visions offers science and social studies courses that provide teachers with spiraled content and scaffolded literacy strategies to support Common Core State Standards (CCSS)-aligned instruction in content-area classrooms. Through this Teacher Practice Networks grant, New Visions is cultivating teacher leaders to lead meaningful professional learning with these high-quality resources to improve teachers’ CCSS-aligned instructional practice.
Strategies for Advancing Common Core
A small corps of New Visions teacher leaders, made up of teachers serving on course-based Teacher Advisory Boards, lead NYC middle and high school teachers through professional learning focused on one of three courses: biology, world history, or U.S. history. Teacher leaders help others learn CCSS-aligned literacy practices for their content-area classrooms; they also mentor and collaborate with peers in refining curricula. Teacher leaders lead similar ongoing professional learning for NYC teachers in other teacher communities within and beyond New Visions.
To promote New Visions’ CCSS-aligned, literacy-based courses, teacher leaders blog and present at conferences, directing educators to the New Visions website where the units of study can be freely accessed. Teacher leaders use social media to tackle common instructional challenges and maintain online communities of same-subject teachers.
Teacher Leadership Capacity
New Visions instructional specialists provide teacher leaders with coaching and modeling of leadership skills. Teacher leaders learn to lead school inquiry teams through collaborative problem-solving, designing and facilitating meaningful professional learning experiences, curating high-quality instructional materials, and presenting at regional and national conferences.
To reach more teachers and help improve their CCSS-aligned instruction, New Visions is scaling implementation of its courses through its teacher leaders and partnerships. The NYC Department of Education is a critical partner to scaling this instructional initiative. New Visions also collaborates with content partners—City University of New York, the Gilder Lehrman Institute, and the American Museum of Natural History—and supports their respective teacher networks with CCSS-aligned resources and pedagogy. New Visions plans to develop a social media strategy with Widmeyer Communications to increase teacher reach and to explore partnerships with the New York State Council for the Social Studies and schools and districts beyond NYC to promote CCSS-aligned instruction in content-area classes.
New Visions for Public Schools
320 West 13th Street, 6th Floor
New York City, NY 10014
Catrin Davies, Associate Director of Institutional Giving
Learn more about the 2013 – 2015 initiative of New Visions for Public Schools.