What Do Our Students Say?

Because the TLC: Instructional Leadership masters degree allowed me to hone my disciplinary learning while also building a foundational knowledge in leadership and policy, I feel equipped to be a master of my craft while also advocating for improvements within my field. During my studies within UW’s College of Education, I found my teacher stance, my voice. Since then, I have found a platform on which to elevate my voice and those of others who similarly desire to have an impact on the students in front of them and the policies that surround them… Everything about the design of the degree worked for me, from sharing the experience with a cohort of colleagues to scheduling courses designed to make me a well-rounded practitioner. Six years later, I continue to communicate and to collaborate with professors and classmates.

- Rachel Johnson, Cohort 2011


The TLC-IL program was perfect for me in that I enrolled the same year I became an instructional coach.  The knowledge and skill I gained through my studies at UW were really “just in time” learning.  I feel that after completing the degree, my understanding of the unique challenges that teacher leaders face gave me better perspective of my role at my district and a wide array of tools I could use to maximize my effectiveness… I loved the cohort model and find that I still keep in touch with most of my classmates.  Not only was it enriching and gratifying to work with others experiencing similar struggles and triumphs in their roles across the Puget Sound, the connections I made with staff in other districts have served me well in creating additional opportunities for experiences that have benefited the staff and students in my own district (i.e., collaborating on creating instructional support materials, participating in item writing/review for assessments at the state and federal level).

- Colleen Williams, Cohort 2011


During my 16 years in education, I’ve served in a large variety of teacher leader roles, both formal and informal, and yet I’ve never had the opportunity for the extensive, highly applicable learning that I had in the UW Teacher Leadership classes. The learning, readings, course projects and interactions with other teacher leaders gave me skills and knowledge that I could immediately apply in my professional work. The intensive work allowed me to immerse myself in new ideas, research and thinking around teacher leadership. I know I’ve become a more effective, skilled and knowledgeable teacher leader because of the classes in this program.

- Jennie Beltramini, UW-Anacortes School District Teacher Leadership Certificate 2013


One of the many teacher leadership practices I have found useful is understanding how I communicate and learn, and how my colleagues communicate and learn. I practice paraphrasing what my colleagues tell me to ensure that I am really listening and that I haven't misunderstood them, which shows my colleagues that I respect and value what they share with me. In this program, I learned that teacher leaders are professionals and should serve as experts in their fields. Teacher leaders are teachers, and at the end of every article read, every PD meeting, every classroom that is observed, every protocol that is followed, every teacher leadership practice, lies one underlying goal: student success.

– Dulce Reyna-Gonzales, Cohort 2015


My purpose as a teacher is to constantly examine and reflect on my practice and to find new ways of doing things. This is my responsibility to my own students. As a teacher leader, my purpose is to provide opportunities for other teachers to participate in this work as well. This program has also taught me how important teacher leaders are to the work within a school and district when they are utilized well… I have learned so many tools and ideas that are applicable and relevant to the work I want to do and get to do as a teacher leader. Thank you for all the time and effort you put in to ensure we were getting such a quality education.

– Sarah Condreay, Cohort 2015


I feel so fortunate to have been joined by such passionate, creative, and motivated educators in earning this degree. The devotion that the members of this cohort have toward teacher leadership and education in general is truly inspiring! I felt valued, listened to, and supported throughout the entirety of my two years in this program.

– Shayna Medved, Cohort 2015

Featured Stories

Ryan Mateo Sharnbroich
Sixth-grade teacher Ryan Mateo Sharnbroich has one goal for the first day of school: to make sure his students know they are welcomed and understood in his classroom.
Teacher leaders working on curriculum
A UW study of an Auburn School District pilot program offers evidence for the benefits of investing in teacher leadership.