Redesigning education

Summary

Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College is leading an effort we call the Next Education Workforce. They are questioning today’s one-teacher, one-classroom model of education and every system that has been built to protect it. In NEW models, they aim to provide students with deeper and personalized learning by building teams of educators with distributed expertise, and empower educators by developing new opportunities for role-based specialization and advancement. They promote teams where humility is an asset; teachers are able to say, ‘I don’t know”, and get support in real time and in authentic ways. Teams by nature call for civic character, civility, perspective-taking, inclusivity and a collaborative spirit. Intellectual character is enhanced as teachers work together to problem-solve and think critically about what’s happening in the classroom as they share a larger roster of students and become accountable as individuals within a team. Students, too, are challenged by deeper and more personalized learning. Teachers and leaders are willing to take risks, be creative and have the courage to move new ideas forward. Ultimately, they are seeking truth and developing practical wisdom through their experiences.  

Reflection questions

  1. How can team-based models create more fairness in learning environments for teachers and students?
  2. How might teams encourage professional and intellectual humility?
  3. How might collaboration encourage perspective-taking and inclusivity among teachers and students?
  4. How might team based models encourage creativity and risk-taking?
  5. How might teams of educators inspire perseverance and resilience in students?
  6. What might be the unintended consequences of the Next Education Workforce model?
  7. How do educators navigate uncertainty as they build new structures for teaching and learning?