Chicago Change Agent

Solving schoolwide problems of practice to address real challenges for students

Is there a problem in your school that you want to take leadership on and work with your peer teachers to solve? Would you like to positively impact student learning, while receiving development as an educational leader, individual coaching support in tackling your school’s challenge, and connection to a network of other dynamic teacher leaders, all without having to leave the classroom? Through the Change Agent program, Teach Plus recruits, selects, trains, and supports outstanding Teacher Leaders to lead a school-based effort to address a problem of practice that affects students across their school.

What is the Change Agent?

Teach Plus recruits and selects Teacher Leaders who demonstrate effectiveness in their classroom and proficiency in their content area as well as the potential to develop the skills necessary for effectively leading other teachers.

To apply to this program, a teacher and principal co-identify an issue within their school that affects teacher practice and student outcomes in an academic area and aligns to the schoolwide priorities. 

Once selected, this teacher becomes a Teach Plus teacher leader (TL), joining the Change Agent cohort with TLs from other selected schools. Teach Plus will support the Change Agent TL in tackling their problem throughout the school year, in the following ways: 

  • Leadership Training – Kicking off over the summer, we’ll host a teacher leadership training session, helping TLs create SMART goals and action plans to address the issue that they’d like to change in their respective schools.  
  • Monthly Coaching – Monthly during the school year, Teach Plus provides regular coaching sessions and cohort meetings to support TLs in their growth as educational leaders throughout the implementation of their action plans.  
  • Stipend – In recognition of their time and effort, Teach Plus will also award all participating Teacher Leaders a $2,500 stipend. 

At this moment, we are targeting TLs from Chicago schools (both charter and district) with a student population of at least 70% free or reduced lunch. If your school fits these requirements, we welcome a teacher (with the support of his/her principal) to apply to the Change Agent program! If you have questions about these guidelines, please feel free to reach out to Kristen Ciciora (occasionally we will make an exception for a particularly compelling problem of practice that ties into our other programs or priorities).

As a Change Agent, you will:

  • Work with your principal to identify a high-leverage problem that aligns with schoolwide priorities, which you will address with a team of teachers throughout the school year;
  • Attend a kick-off training over the summer to develop your SMART goals and action plan. An administrator with access to data and decision-making power must attend with you (Principals strongly encouraged);
  • Work independently and collaboratively each month with Teach Plus coaches and the Change Agent cohort to discuss, analyze data, reflect, and revise action plans. Cohort meetings will last 2-3 hours and occur once a month (alternating between virtual and in-person, when it is safe to do so, sessions);
  • Celebrate your progress at an end-of-year showcase with other Teacher Leaders, principals, district staff, and the philanthropic community. 

 

Eligibility

All applicants must be current classroom teachers with a minimum of two years of teaching experience in a Chicago school (charter or district), with a student population of at least 70% free or reduced lunch. Applicants must demonstrate that they possess the critical skills and competencies required for effectively leading their peers. If you have questions about these guidelines, please feel free to reach out to Kristen Ciciora (occasionally we will make an exception for a particularly compelling problem of practice that ties into our other programs or priorities).

Application Process

Part 1 – Online Application
Part 2 – Performance task & virtual interview
Part 3 – Principal phone interview & reference check 
 
Application and Series Timeline
  • Application Deadline: Sunday, May 8th @ 11:59 pm
  • Teacher Leader Interviews (conducted virtually): May 23rd-26th
  • Principal Phone Interview & Reference Check: Week of June 1st

Please contact Kristen Ciciora (kciciora@teachplus.org) with any questions.

Interested in becoming a teacher leader?

Click below to start your application.

Know a teacher leader?

Nominate a teacher who wants to achieve change in their schools and in the broader education system.

Teacher Voices