Wednesday, May 16, 2012

America Achieves Fellowship

The following information is about an opportunity to raise the voice of educators as we work to transform our education system.  I encourage you to send this information out, apply yourself, or nominate an accomplished educator  that will be a strong addition to this group of Fellows.  It would be great to have many NEA members apply for, or be nominated for, this Fellowship so that our members’ voices continue to influence the education policy dialogue.

 From America Achieves:

 Apply today ( for the outstanding opportunity to join the second cohort of the America Achieves' Education Champions Fellowship. Fellows receive a stipend and will be provided with unique opportunities to advise top education leaders at semi-annual conferences; work with other excellent educators to help find solutions to some of the education system's greatest challenges; and develop their own content knowledge on pressing policy issues. The next conference will occur in New York City in September during NBC's Education Nation. The group is doubling its size in order to expand the fellowship to a total of 100 outstanding educators, which will include 80 teachers and 20 principals. Applications are due May 29, 2012.  All travel and lodging expenses are covered for the fellows.

America Achieves is a new non-profit that aims to help America become a global leader in educational excellence and equity and prepare all young people for success in careers, college, and citizenship. The Fellowship leverages the voice of a diverse group of the nation's most effective principals and teachers to improve national education policy and increase the practical tools available to educators nationwide. America Achieves fellowship was formed to identify transformative educators, learn from their successes and bring their voices into the public discourse on education. Current members of the group have advised such leaders as the U.S. Secretary of Education, mayors and superintendents of major cities and have played a crucial role in both of NBC's nationally televised Education Nation summits.

Fact Sheet for the America Achieves’ Education Champions Fellowship

Purpose of the Fellowship

·         To amplify voices of principals and teachers.

·         To advise policy makers and champion the importance of improving our education system so that we can achieve excellence and equity in all American classrooms.

·         To communicate lessons learned in schools and classrooms to key decision makers and the broader public.

What have the Fellows done so far?

·         Since joining the community in September 2010, Fellows participated in both of NBC’s Education Nation summits, where they spoke on panels, participated in teacher town halls, and conducted interviews with national and local media outlets.

·         Fellows have met for three conferences to exchange best practices and provide substantive and candid advice to policymakers and leaders in education on such topics as Common Core Standards and ESEA reauthorization.

·         The Fellows have a virtual network where they exchange thought-provoking reflection on their experiences as educators.  The network has become a valuable tool for all the participants to support each other in schools across the country.

·         Many of the Fellows have been involved in educating policy makers in their local communities and state capitols through testimony and media interviews.

Who are the Fellows?

·         The current class of fellows includes 41 teachers and 8 principals, all whom have helped their students achieve outstanding levels of achievement and improvement in their classrooms and schools.

·         They reside in 17 different states, with representation in all of the major regions of the US. 

·         The group is highly diverse with regards to ethnicity, age, and years of experience.  The teachers have experience in a variety of classroom contexts--from kindergarten to high school chemistry and art. They hold a variety of leadership posts—from math chair to union representative. 

What are we looking for in a Candidate?

·         We are seeking applications from educators who are highly effective in their schools and committed to three principles:

1.      All children can achieve at high-levels when adults take responsibility to make this happen

2.      Effective educators can improve the education system by engaging in the policy process

3.      Public conversations about education must be evidence-based, include diverse stakeholders, and be conducted with respect for differences of opinion. 

  • Fellows will be expected to attend at least two conferences per year

Do Fellows receive compensation?

·         Fellows will receive stipends for active participation.

·         All travel and lodging costs are covered when fellows go to conferences

What is America Achieves?

·         America Achieves is a non-profit organization that will shine a spotlight on successful educators and programs, distill lessons learned and the evidence base, and support promising state and local efforts that drive large-scale improvements in education and outcomes for young people.  This work will help America become a global leader in educational excellence and equity and prepare all young people for success in careers, college, and citizenship.

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