Early and expanded learning sessions available from Cultivate Learning institute

During the first virtual Quality Institute, produced by Cultivate Learning at University of Washington College of Education, more 1,200 educators from across Washington joined their peers to connect and engage June 8-12. Content experts led live discussions in English, Spanish and Somali, engaging early and expanded learning providers around the topics of positive behavior support, trauma-informed care and adult resilience, and The Pyramid Model.

The protests happening around the world inspired the opening plenary message “Protest is Communication,” led by Gail Joseph, founding director of Cultivate Learning and Dawn Williams, director of professional learning and coaching. The connection was made between challenging behavior prevention and the much-needed anti-racism work the early care and education community needs. Phil Strain, The Pyramid Model co-author, presented the opening keynote, “Put on your own mask first: How to implement the Pyramid model during Covid-19.” In the closing plenary, a panel of youth and children making change around Washington state shared their vision for the future and called on providers to help make it happen.

Sessions have been made available for the public and can be viewed on-demand through July 12. Register at https://bit.ly/2020CLVirtual to get access and look for other virtual training opportunities from Cultivate Learning in the coming year.

The importance of relationships during distance learning

As schools began to transition to a new system of distance and remote learning, the initial focus was naturally on the nuts and bolts: How will we ensure students have access to the technology they need? What video platforms and tools should we use? What’s the right amount of screen time?

Once the reality of distance learning set in, however, educators like Sean McKenna, the principal of Vale Elementary in the Cashmere School District, found that addressing students’ and parents’ emotional needs was just as important. Read more from the UW Center for Educational Leadership.

Doctoral student named to inaugural cohort of early childhood changemakers

William White, a doctoral student in early childhood special education, has been selected as a member of the inaugural cohort of Start With Equity Fellows, an initiative of the Children’s Equity Project (CEP). The novel 1-year fellowship program was created to prepare the next generation of changemakers in early childhood policy and research and supports advanced graduated students, postdoctoral scholars and early career professionals.

"The Children's Equity Fellowship program will provide mentorship and guidance to further my knowledge on connecting research to policy and practice,” said White. “As I continue my research on the importance of early childhood Black male teachers, the fellowship will allow me the platform to share not only their importance but the necessary foundations that must be in place for their successfulness in teacher preparation programs and the districts they choose to work in."

White worked as a special education teacher for ten years with experience in both Virginia and Washington, D.C. Currently, he is the co-designer and director of My Brother’s Teacher, which works to increase the presence of Black and Brown males in early childhood education. He also continues to provide pro-bono special education consulting to families of students in the Washington, D.C., and Seattle areas.

The surprising possibilities of virtual team collaboration

In the latest installment of The Throughline, Center for Educational Leadership Executive Director Max Silverman joined Associate Director Anneke Markholt on a virtual learning walk with Jeff Pelzel and the Newhall School District. Through this session, Max shared insights on the different ways that the team is collaborating and problem solving from a distance to prepare for any fall opening scenario.

Bellingham principal honored with UW leadership award

Meagan Dawson (EdD '15), principal of Kulshan Middle School in Bellingham, recently was recognized as the 2020 recipient of the Art of Leadership Award presented by the Danforth Educational Leadership Program at the University of Washington. 

The Art of Leadership Award honors a leader who exhibits creativity, interpretation and a balance of both imagination and technical ability, as well as recognizing that leader’s enactment of a bold vision through strong core values and perseverance — without losing sight of individual or community needs.

Dawson has served as principal at Kulshan Middle School since 2015. She received her Doctor of Education from the University of Washington, Master of Education and teaching certification in language arts from Western Washington University, and bachelor of arts from the University of Washington. Previously, she held director and principal roles with the Burlington-Edison School District overseeing multiple state and federal grant-funded programs and professional development while helping to create a positive school environment for culturally and linguistically diverse learners. Dawson has extensive experience with dual language and immersion programs, and equity work including supporting LGBTQ youth and building relationships with tribal neighbors.

"This award is a testament to Meagan’s commitment to inclusion and equity, and the many ways she leads Kulshan to live out our strategic plan, The Bellingham Promise," said Bellingham Public Schools deputy superintendent Mike Copland. "Meagan’s work to develop and support the student equity team at Kulshan is a great example for the rest of the district. This award is very well deserved."

Undergraduates reflect on senior capstone experiences

For the University of Washington’s undergraduate education students, senior year is an in-depth opportunity to apply knowledge from all of their previous coursework and practice their skills in a community setting.

Through their capstone internships, more than 200 education majors partnered during the 2019-20 academic year with dozens of community-based organizations — from schools to government and non-profits. In the process, students gained real-world experience while supporting the work of partner organizations.

In a series of audio reflections, several College of Education students graduating with their undergraduate degrees this month describe their capstones and how the experiences impacted them. Read more and listen to their reflections.

Leaders prepare for an uncertain school year with online leadership assessment

As school leaders prepare for an uncertain school year in the fall, they are turning to the Center for Educational Leadership’s online Measures of Instructional Leadership Expertise (MILE) assessment. This assessment provides independent measures of a principal’s expertise in four researched-proven areas. Leaders will gather concrete data to focus their professional learning and strengthen practices that tie back to student growth. Learn more.

Varghese to join virtual panel on justice and anti-racism in teacher education

Professor Manka Varghese will take part in the virtual panel discussion "Centering Justice and Anti-Racism in Teacher Education" on July 13.

The event will feature Varghese and other teacher educator scholars who have been part of the Teacher Education Collective. They will discuss new theoretical perspectives, frameworks and principles for the development and preparation of anti-racist teachers.

Register for the event, which begins at 1 p.m. Pacific, at s.uconn.edu/centeringjustice.