This special report explores the growing interest among many educators and school leaders in altering the conventional understandings around what teachers do. In particular, it looks at the ways districts, schools, and teachers themselves are transforming teachers' positions—and the types of supports available to them—in order to drive organizational change, build capacity, improve policymaking, and deepen instructional expertise.

Teaching Ambassador Fellow Emily Davis, center, helps out a group attending the Teach to Lead summit in Boston. She said that educators often ask for a definition of teacher leadership. "Everyone can define their own path. You can define what works for you, where you can fit in," she said.

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What does true teacher leadership look like? How can school systems empower teachers as leaders to improve schools? Educators describe how they sought out leadership roles within their districts in a special Teaching Ahead roundtable.

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February 18, 2015 Those championing the movement see it as a necessary structural change to school systems, and one that is capable of being more than a fleeting trend.
February 18, 2015 The National Academy of Advanced Teacher Education is built on the idea that the best teachers need opportunities to wrestle with cognitively challenging professional work to improve their craft and spread their expertise.
February 18, 2015 Some teachers say that blended-learning environments, designed to leverage technology and individualize student instruction, can create new roles for teachers as well.
February 18, 2015 The Teaching Ambassador Fellows at the U.S. Department of Education have sought to bring teacher leadership to federal policy.
February 18, 2015 A new system in Baltimore rewards teachers based on their accomplishments rather than their seniority or credentials, presenting teachers with new options.
February 18, 2015 Too many good teachers are forced to leave the classroom just because they want new challenges and a sense of advancement, English teacher Paul Barnwell says.
February 18, 2015 Carrie Bakken, a program coordinator and teacher at the Avalon School in St. Paul, Minn., says that working at a teacher-led school gives her a greater sense of autonomy and opportunity.

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