First grade teacher Jennifer Crucetti is one of just eight teachers nationwide to be selected to participate in the Teach Like a Champion fellowship, which recognizes, supports and develops outstanding classroom teachers following Doug Lemov’s Teach Like A Champion principles and techniques.
“I’m thrilled to be a part of this fellowship and so grateful for my students,” said Ms. Crucetti. “They are a huge part [of the fellowship] and they have done half of the leg work required to get me there.”
Part of the rigorous application process required Ms. Crucetti to film her teaching in the classroom and incorporating techniques into her daily lessons. Upon being selected as a semifinalist, she was also required to spend a day in professional development with Teach Like A Champion program staff.
As a fellow, Crucetti will receive in depth coaching and professional development in her classroom instruction and become a model teacher to demonstrate excellence in teaching. The fellowship is ongoing for the next three years and she will spend the first 18 months working with her “team” to practice techniques, log and analyze video of team members, and also plan and coach colleagues in the district.
The second 18 months of the fellowship requires Crucetti to remain a classroom teacher and continue to film instruction and best practices as an expert in Teach Like A Champion techniques.
“We are so proud and excited for Jennifer to be selected for this program,” said Superintendent Jennifer Spring, Ed.D. “It’s extremely competitive, with applicants from across the nation, and we’re thrilled she will be bringing her expertise back to our teachers here in Cohoes.”
Strengthening instruction to improve student outcomes has been a priority for Dr. Spring since coming to Cohoes in April 2015. In her first full year leading the district she introduced building principals and district administrators to Teach Like A Champion 2.0: 62 Techniques to Put Students on a Path to College. The principals completed a book study of the techniques and then implemented 12 of the 62 techniques through their building leadership teams in the 2016-17 school year.
In addition, all new teachers who are hired in the district learn and adopt the Teach Like a Champion techniques in a two-year professional development academy led by Assistant Superintendent Peggy O’Shea.
Dr. Spring and Ms. O’Shea plan to add 12 new techniques to ongoing professional development for building leadership teams to bring to their instructional staff at each school in the coming year.
“We’re striving to be one the highest performing districts in the Greater Capital Region,” explained Dr. Spring. “To do that, we must continuously strengthen teaching that leads to greater student achievement. Teach Like A Champion techniques are key changes to teaching and classroom management that are proven. Having Jennifer participate in this highly valuable professional development will no doubt help to accelerate our progress.