(Special from Alabama Department of Education)
Montgomery, Ala. – The Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE) is pleased to welcome the initial cohort of the Network for Alabama Teaching Fellows (NATF). During the December 10, 2015, meeting of the Alabama State Board of Education, members of the initial cohort NATF was introduced. The NATF is an essential network of teachers that, through development of regional professional learning communities utilizing a variety communications tools, will act as a conduit between classrooms across Alabama and educational policy makers.
The Network for Alabama Teaching Fellows will allow key decision makers to glean innovative ideas from across the state and identify concerns and challenges at the school and classroom level. The fellows will inform developmental work with real input regarding the success of key initiatives and improvement efforts, all of which will energize and honor the voices of teachers across the state of Alabama.
Hillary Ellis, Teacher Fellow and educator at Hillcrest Elementary School, Enterprise City Schools, said, “The NATF is an opportunity to positively connect the voices of all Alabama teachers to policy makers in hopes of transforming future practice and policies that effects those most in the Alabama educational system.
Ellis continued, “My hope is for the often unheard voices of teachers to be valued in a way that they have never been before. I am honored to be a part of this ground-breaking group that will be an agent of change for all teachers and students in Alabama!”
Each prospective member was recommended by leadership within his or her school or district and each submitted an online application and resume. Each of the new teaching fellows was chosen by a committee made up of representatives from AEA, A+ Education Partnership and the ALSDE, all partners in this process. The fellows will serve for two years. A new group will be named in summer 2017. Individually, the teaching fellows are all highly skilled and highly effective educators; collectively, they represent what is best in our profession.
“The creation of the NATF is the start of something great for Alabama’s students and educators. Alabama has some amazingly talented teachers, and we are going to capitalize on those talents by creating a collective voice to empower teachers. This endeavor will help guide our state toward a better education system that is responsive to both student and educator needs,” said, Kevin Balius, Teacher Fellow and ELA Department Chair, Semmes Middle School, Mobile County Schools.
Anniston City – Anniston High School – Gussie Stallworth
Athens City – Athens High School – Paige Hicks
Auburn City – Ogletree Elementary School – Kathryn Knorr
Baldwin County – Spanish Fort Middle School – Beverly Floyd
Birmingham City – Bush K-8 School – Jana Roland-Williams
Chambers County – Valley High School – Eric Creel
Enterprise City – Hillcrest Elementary School – Hilary Ellis
Escambia County – WS Neal Middle School – Jessica James
Florence City – Forest Hills Elementary School – Laura Hillhouse
Homewood City – Homewood Middle School – Justin Hefner
Huntsville City – Westlawn Middle School – Bonnie Garrett
Macon County – George Washington Carver Elementary School – Taryn Sanders
Madison City -lHorizon Elementary School – Gay Barnes
Mobile County – Semmes Middle School – Kevin Benjamin Balius
Montgomery County – Fitzpatrick Elementary School – Anntonia Owens
Montgomery County – Montgomery County/Title III Department – Victoria Reese
Randolph County – Wadley High School – Amber Dudley
Scottsboro City – Nelson Elementary School – Emily Berry
Sheffield City – L.E. Wilson Elementary School – Carla Griffin
Sumter County – Sumter Central High School – Kimberly Parker Pace
Tuscaloosa County – Duncanville Middle School – Traci Primm
Vestavia Hills City – Louis Pizitz Middle School – Ashley Perry