Foundation Holds Teacher Listening Sessions

By Punita Thurman

Over the past few years, there has been a lot change and evolution in the Detroit education landscape. In 2016 alone, we saw the launch of a debt-free Detroit Public Schools Community District and election of a new school board, and accountability measures put in place to better ensure every child is receiving a quality education. There is progress to be optimistic about. 

But I am worried. I’m worried for our schools, our educators and our children. Proper attention and support hasn’t reached the most critical area: the classroom. 

Research has shown time and time again that most important element to ensuring quality education is quality educators, both at the head of the classroom and the helm of the school. But educators aren’t given nearly enough support for the job. It’s a challenging profession anywhere, but especially in cities like Detroit, where many students live in areas of concentrated poverty, the effects of which can hamper their ability to focus in school. 

For all they do to prepare our children to succeed and lead, the importance of educators cannot be overstated. Yet across the state and nation, poor policy and ugly rhetoric surround the profession. For all the challenges teachers face, it is no surprise that we are seeing declining enrollment in teacher prep programs. 

To change this narrative, honoring and lifting up our educators, the Michigan Department of Education launched the #proudMIeducator campaign. The Skillman Foundation is delighted to support this important effort. 

Inspired by the #proudMIeducator campaign, the Skillman Foundation has asked Hampton Consulting to hold listening sessions with Detroit educators. We want to hear our teachers’ ideas, prideful moments and challenges firsthand so we can be of best support. 

If you are a teacher, or administrator who has taught in Detroit, we want to hear from you!


Please share this opportunity with any Detroit educators you know! 

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