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Where We Work
Teach For America’s Alumni School Leadership team runs programs to cultivate the leadership of aspiring and current school leaders and supports regional teams working to do the same. Today, more than 900 alumni lead schools across the country.
Together the national and regional teams work to:
Inspire alumni to make an impact as school leaders
Help alumni access high-quality principal preparation programs to build readiness for school leadership roles
Create connections to local and national job opportunities
- Support and recognize alumni principals
- Rural School Leadership Academy
- Rural Principal Fellowship
- School Leaders of Color Conference
- Schools to Learn From
The national Alumni School Leadership team runs three specific programs to build readiness for aspiring school leaders and support alumni currently in school leadership roles.
Our third program is Schools to Learn From, which highlights four schools that demonstrate excellence in Teach For America’s core values and student results.
We also work with The Collective to bring together school leaders and aspiring school leaders of color at the annual School Leaders of Color Conference.
To learn more about any of these programs, please email SchoolLeadership@teachforamerica.org.
Rural School Leadership Academy
The demand for committed and effective school leaders in rural areas is very high. To respond to this need and the desire of alumni to be a part of long-term change throughout rural America, Teach For America developed the Rural School Leadership Academy (RSLA).
RSLA supports alumni who are exploring school leadership early in their education careers. RSLA’s 2014 cohort included 20 alumni. RSLA will be expanding to 35 participants in 2015. Learn more.
Rural Principal Fellowship
The Rural Principal Fellowship is a principal preparation program for Teach For America alumni in rural regions who are two to three years away from taking on a principal role.
During this three-year, fully-funded fellowship participants earn a principal certification and their master’s degree in educational leadership (from a university partner). The fellowship also provides hands-on experience in leadership roles. The first cohort began in 2014 with four fellows representing three regions. Learn more.
School Leaders of Color Conference
Each winter, the Alumni School Leadership team partners with The Collective to host a weekend conference for alumni school leaders and aspiring school leaders of color from across the country. In February 2015, 300 school leaders and community partners convened in Atlanta for a weekend of professional development focused on improving instructional excellence while living out commitments to social justice. Learn more about The Collective or express your interest in attending future workshops.
Schools to Learn From
Schools to Learn From is a national program that exposes alumni to a wide variety of excellent schools while building a network of educators who can support each other. Learn more.
Alumni School Leader Spotlight
Jonathan Santos Silva (South Dakota '10) first dreamed of building a school when he was an undergraduate business student at Northeastern University. After graduating and attaining five years of management experience, he joined Teach For America in 2010. Teaching and living in South Dakota confirmed that education and school leadership were the right path for him.
Now as a high school designer at Blackstone Valley Prep Mayoral Academy, Jonathan knows first-hand how incredibly important strong school leadership is, but he also warns that it isn’t for everyone.
“Building a school is a dream come true for me, but I did not realize how much I would miss the classroom and day-to-day relational aspects of working with students and their families. Before leaving the classroom, make sure this is really what you want to do.”
One thing is certain in Jonathan’s world, working with young people and their families is the most meaningful and important work he has ever done.
“My love for my kids, their families, and the communities I serve propels me forward each day despite the obstacles, and my faith in their resilience and in God assures me that we will make change! Every day, families send us their students and it is our job to give them our all in return.”