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Blog post Jhonatan Saldana, Guest BloggerSREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program Participant

Putting Yourself Before Your Work

An occasional series from the Doctoral Scholars Program on postsecondary topics

After working in research in one capacity or another for the past six years, the most common topic I hear about when speaking with fellow students is stress. We just can’t help but mention the stress of working on a time crunch, the stress of submitting grants, the stress of funding; stress is always an underlying theme to our careers and one that appears to have no end. However, not all is doom and gloom. There are many ways in which we can try to balance our work-related stress, and below are two which can get overlooked.

Blog post Precious Hardy, Guest BloggerSREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program Participant

Structuring Your Dissertation Committee

SREB scholar Precious Hardy
An occasional series from the Doctoral Scholars Program on postsecondary topics

In graduate school we are bombarded with decisions. We decide whether to be quantitative, qualitative or mixed-methods researchers, what classes to take, and what topic to expand on for our dissertation. One of the most important decisions we make, though, is deciding which faculty members will sit on our dissertation committee.

Blog post By Alan Richard, SREB News

NO LONGER ALONE: INSTRUCTIONAL COACHES FIND PEERS AT SREB CONFERENCE

Being an instructional coach can be a lonely journey.

Just ask LaTonya Bolden, a former high school math and science teacher who now works with teachers and schools across the country as a school improvement coach for SREB.

Becoming a teacher-coach wasn’t always easy for Bolden, who suddenly had to work with teachers in academic subjects outside her own and with teachers in early- and middle-grades schools. She also found herself mainly working with adults all day.

“I miss the kids, I miss that daily interaction that I had with the students, because a lot of times that’s what kept me going,” Bolden said. “Interacting with adults is a little different.”

Bolden and other educators now working as instructional coaches — who focus on helping K-12 teachers hone and improve their classroom instruction — gathered in May for the first SREB conference designed just for them.

Blog post By Charlotte Dailey and Tiffany Harrison, SREB© 2022. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons BY license.

Momentum grows for open educational resources
After first-ever conference, leaders can tap additional workshops on using OER to support students

Charlotte Dailey of SREB speaks at the OER conference.

SREB continues to build momentum from the first conference of its kind — the Open Educational Resources and Dual Enrollment Conference: Making a Case for Student Success, held in Atlanta in late February — by embarking on more ways to bring education leaders together around this topic.

Blog post By Diane James, SREBPart 1 of a Two-Part Series

School and District Strategies for Addressing Student Mental Health Crises

As we approach two full years of pandemic-related school closures and disruptions, more schools are reporting crisis-level threats to students’ mental health and social and emotional well-being.

Emotions are running high as students are thrown back into social situations after a year or more of isolation. Anxiety and depression are on the rise. More students are dying by suicide, and waitlists of those seeking school-based therapy are long.

Blog post By Megan Boren and Kim Anderson

Meeting Workforce Demand Won’t Happen With Teacher and Faculty Shortages
States aren’t connecting all the dots between education and workforce development, and it's hurting our economy.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know we’re experiencing record worker shortages in certain careers.

SREB has analyzed data on the economy, labor markets and education, and asked: In what ways is our economy tied to the success of our schools and colleges? How can we improve our economic future through education?

Blog post

Teacher shortages, workforce issues demand bolder solutions from states

SREB President Stephen Pruitt

By Stephen Pruitt, SREB President

Across the SREB states, many leaders are realizing the need for action on one of the biggest challenges in education: ensuring every student has a well-prepared teacher in every class, every year, no matter where they live.

I know personally how teachers can impact students’ lives. I started my career as a science teacher in Fayette County, Georgia, and I’m still humbled when former students tell me how I helped them become who they are as adults and find satisfying careers to pursue.

Blog post Megan Boren, SREB

To See Teacher Compensation, Look at More Than Salaries
Teacher Pay Is Increasing. So Is the Cost of Benefits

Salaries 2014 to 2020 Health benefits 2019 to 2020 Retirement benefits 2019 to 2020 Take-home pay 2019 and 2020

This spring, the National Education Association released its annual teacher pay analysis a bit earlier than usual. This data is widely used across the nation as the main source for average teacher salaries by state. The headline for 2021: Teacher salaries are going up by an average of 1.5% across the nation, and average spending per pupil is up 5%.

This is fantastic news ─ no bones about it.

It’s also not the whole story.

Blog post By Alan Richard, SREB News

WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT TEACHER SHORTAGES — AND HOW STATES, DISTRICTS CAN RESPOND

WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT TEACHER SHORTAGES — AND HOW STATES, DISTRICTS CAN RESPOND

What do we know about teacher shortages in each state and across the country? How severe are they? What has caused the shortages — and how can leaders help solve them?

SREB joined leaders from EducationCounsel, FutureEd at Georgetown University, and state and local school systems for an online event Nov. 8 to answer these important questions. (See the video of the event at the end of this story.)

Blog post Alan Richard, SREB News Manager

HOW OPEN EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES CAN HELP MORE STUDENTS TAKE DUAL ENROLLMENT

Expensive textbooks and other classroom materials can keep students from taking dual enrollment courses if those costs aren’t covered.

The result: A lack of opportunity for many students to get a head start on college.

States, colleges and universities are making headway on this challenge. Some of the pacesetters shared their insights in a webinar led by SREB and the Midwestern Higher Education Compact in October 2021. 

Blog post © 2021. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons BY license.

Why Open Educational Resources matter in the future of education
A Q&A with SREB’s Charlotte Dailey

Photo of Charlotte Dailey

Charlotte Dailey joined SREB in 2021 to lead our work on open educational resources. We spoke with Charlotte about why OER matter and why she works in this field.

For those who don’t know, what are open educational resources and why do they matter to the future of education?

Open educational resources are materials that can be accessed freely. They are openly licensed and available to be reused, remixed, revised, retained or redistributed. Materials that are truly OER have few to no restrictions for use in learning.

Blog post Megan Boren, SREB

How States Can Elevate the Teaching Profession
Restoring respect and value

Good schools depend on excellent teachers, in every classroom. SREB is helping states examine and redesign state policies to elevate the profession and end teacher shortages.   

I want my daughter to have the best teachers every school year. What parent doesn’t? Yet in too many schools, the only teachers available are uncertified or brand new, with no experience.  

Blog post Alan Richard, SREB News Manager

Impact of teacher shortages in most states far-reaching

When students don’t have good teachers, it can affect their cognitive growth — and over time can result in measurable economic loss.

Teacher shortages, therefore, are the type of crisis that “can put an entire society at risk,” said Nicole Smith, the chief economist and research professor at the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce.

Blog post Alan Richard, SREB News Manager

Governors discuss strategies for education recovery during SREB event

Governors from three states spoke during a special SREB online event on June 16 of their commitments to improve education and prepare students for a workplace undergoing vast changes from technology and automation.

Governor John Carney of Delaware, Governor Kay Ivey of Alabama, and Governor Brian Kemp of Georgia discussed their priorities for education with SREB President Stephen Pruitt in the final event in SREB’s summer series for policymakers.

Blog post Megan Boren, Program Specialist, SREBBlog Post

Respect (and Pay) Our Teachers, Or Lose Them

teacher overseeing student work in library As state education budgets suffer during this pandemic, the teaching profession simply cannot absorb the kind of blow it took in the last recession. Teacher salaries dropped substantially then, and today, a decade later, they’re still lower on average than before the Great Recession. Morale has dropped, too, according to surveys, and turnover has risen as budgets and teacher supports decrease. We can’t afford to repeat the same mistakes in this current climate, another recession aggravated by COVID-19.

Blog post Chinasa Elue, Ph.D., Guest BloggerSREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program Graduate

The Impact of Microaggressions on Health and Job Satisfaction

An occasional series from the Doctoral Scholars Program on postsecondary topics

Dr. Chinasa Elue The multiple pandemics of 2020 have systematically forced us to engage in critical conversations around race, injustice and the pervasive nature of inequalities across all sectors of society. As these dialogues have unfolded, several organizations have stepped forward with statements decrying racism and social injustice on their websites and social media outlets.

Blog post Samantha Durance, SREB Policy Analyst

Screening for Dyslexia
What it Does and Doesn’t Do

It would be wonderful if it were possible to perform a quick, simple screening for every child and identify those who have dyslexia. But screening for characteristics of dyslexia is not the same thing as diagnosing it, and identifying children who may have dyslexia is not as simple as screening them for reading skills.

Blog post Robin Phelps-Ward, Ed.D., Guest BloggerSREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program Graduate

Pedagogical Strategies for Inclusive and Trauma-Informed Teaching

An occasional series from the Doctoral Scholars Program on postsecondary topics.

Dr. Robin Phelps-Ward As educators continue in the 2020-2021 year during a time of racial unrest, a national presidential election, and the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, many are wondering how to adapt their teaching practices in response. The current climate has been traumatic for those who are navigating loss, grief, and profound changes of all sorts. As educators we must respond to this in inclusive ways that support students’ well-being.

Blog post Shani Collins Woods, Ph.D., Guest BloggerSREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program graduate

Self-Care and Your Success in Graduate School

An occasional series from the Doctoral Scholars Program on postsecondary topics.

Dr. Shani Collins Woods How do you honor your mind, body and spirit? Do you even think it’s important?

From 2007-2014 I was a full-time doctoral student in social work at the University of Alabama. The program involved writing an annotated bibliography, writing and defending an integrative paper, taking comprehensive exams, and writing and defending a dissertation. My life was consumed with this and travel between my home state of Mississippi and my surrogate city and state, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. I made little time for self-care. I would leave Tuscaloosa on a Friday and return either Sunday evening or leave at 5:30 a.m. on Monday morning. I missed my family, friends, and the comforts of my Mississippi Delta home life. My home was my outlet.