General

A Look Back at Symposium 2020

This February 9-11, NTC hosted its 22nd Annual Symposium. Our annual Symposium is a flagship event designed to push your thinking and increase exposure to new opportunities for your district. Symposium is a gathering of thought leaders, state, and district leaders sharing their strategies to accelerate educator effectiveness and ensure student success.

Our mission is to disrupt the predictability of educational inequities for systemically underserved students by accelerating educator effectiveness. Through Symposium, we’re bringing together our partners and thought leaders in the field to share best practices and approaches to supporting educators at all levels so that every student, from preschool through high school, can receive an excellent and equitable education that empowers them to reach their full potential in classrooms, communities, and beyond.

 

SYMPOSIUM 2020 KEY TAKEAWAYS

PRE-CONFERENCE CHALLENGES PERCEPTIONS OF EQUITY

Symposium kicked off with a day full of learning during the pre-conference. Sessions focused on how educators at all levels can successfully accelerate student equity – whether through leadership opportunities or classroom practice. Sessions included:

How Can Teachers Meet Their Students’ Needs?
Swimming in the Deep End – What Does It Take?
Reality Pedagogy to Accelerate Collective Impact for Equity in Education
Leading for Impact: Becoming a Superintendent and Succeeding in the Role

KEYNOTES CHALLENGE THE STATUS QUO

Sonja Brookins Santelises, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, Baltimore City Public Schools

“Educational Redlining is real and, similarly to housing, creates the inevitable, adverse outcomes it is designed to do…But excellence in urban education is achievable.” 

Desmond Blackburn, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, New Teacher Center

“We know that students are struggling academically. We know that teachers are leaving the profession in droves. We also know that all the data is exacerbated in the schools and districts that serve systemically underserved students.”

Laura Brewer, Leadership Coach, Speaker, & Educator

“The things that we say to ourselves in our head is often tied up in oppression.” 

 

SESSIONS CHALLENGE US TO KNOW OUR STUDENTS, KNOW OURSELVES

Throughout Symposiums, sessions challenged attendees to know their students and themselves – a key ingredient to providing the type of professional learning and capacity-building approach that can benefit students. To fully serve our students well, it is important that we, as educators, also know ourselves – from our personal backgrounds and biases to our school and district visions. If we are to truly better our students and their educational experiences, we need to create a culture in our districts, schools, classrooms, and among ourselves, that allows for self-reflection, learning, and change.

Sessions explored:

  • Culturally responsive pedagogy
  • Trauma-informed instruction
  • Developing and retaining equity-minded teachers in districts and schools
  • System-level changes
  • Rigorous curriculum that meets students’ diverse needs

 

 

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