April 2017

As spring flowers begin to grow, so do the professional development opportunities to grow your practice. This issue is jam-packed with training opportunities in May, June and July. NBCT Marianne Hunter continues to track education related issues and sends weekly highlights every Friday to everyone on the CSTP listserv ( read her last update).

As always, be sure to   and encourage them to sign-up for our emails  to stay on top of events and opportunities.
Free Teacher Leadership Labs in North Thurston and Steilacoom School Districts

We are partnering with the Steilacoom and North Thurston School Districts to offer free Teacher Leadership Labs in May. Leadership Labs provide a specific format for educators to hear about a beset practice and learning of one school or district and then interactively discuss and apply that learning to their own context. CSTP provides materials, morning snacks and lunch and substitute teacher reimbursement for participants.

Steilacoom School District Teacher Leadership Lab

A Teacher Leadership Lab in the Steilacoom School District will take place on Thursday, May 11, 2017. The focus of this Teacher Leadership Lab is to examine how Saltar's Point Elementary School has moved beyond student engagement toward student ownership of learning. Come and learn how they are utilizing teacher leadership and student perception surveys as well as other tools and resources to develop a whole learner perspective and leverage new pedagogies and practices which grow student voice and autonomy.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Teachers, principals and central office administrators interested this work.
WHAT: Steilacoom Teacher Leadership Lab
WHEN: May 11, 2017, 9 am - 2:30 pm (a light breakfast and coffee at 9 am with Lab starting at 9:30 am)
WHERE: Saltar's Point Elementary, 908 3rd Street, Steilacoom, WA 98388
COST: Free
WHAT ELSE: A light breakfast and lunch provided. CSTP will also provide substitute reimbursement to attendees.

North Thurston Public Schools Teacher Leadership Lab

North Thurston Public Schools and CSTP are hosting a Teacher Leadership Lab on Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 at the NTPS District Office Board Room. The focus of this Leadership Lab is to learn how River Ridge High School Math Professional Learning Community has become a collaborative place for authentic and powerful teacher learning and reflection with a deep focus on student achievement. Come and learn how the River Ridge Math PLC used Teacher Leadership and Systems Thinking to create an environment of honest feedback, data reflection and instructional risk that has transformed the work of the PLC and created a place where teachers want to come to learn and grow.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Teachers, principals and central office administrators associated with Professional Learning Community work
WHAT: River Ridge High School Teacher Leadership Lab
WHEN: May 24, 2017, 9 am - 2:30 pm (a light breakfast and coffee at 9 am with Lab starting at 9:30 am)
WHERE: NTPS Administrative Center, Board Room, 305 College Street NE, Lacey, WA 98516
COST: Free
WHAT ELSE: A light breakfast and lunch provided. CSTP will also provide substitute reimbursement to attendees.

Learn more about Leadership Labs at Questions: Contact Nasue Nishida at .

Jana Dean Webinar on 13th International Congress of Math 

Earlier this month we held a webinar featuring 6th grade math and science teacher - and storyteller extraordinaire - Jana Dean. She recounts traveling to Hamburg, Germany to attend the 13th International Congress of Math Educators and discusses what she learned about education systems and philosophies in other countries.

You can watch the recording now at

Jana Dean teaches in the Jefferson Accelerated Math and Science program in the Olympia School District.  She facilitates Math Education Collaborative workshops and leads middle school professional development sessions for the Olympia School District.  She is a finalist for the 2016 Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching. She lives near Olympia with her husband, one of her two grown children, one dog, and one cat.
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In This Issue
Upcoming Events & Opportunities
PESB Educator Retooling Scholarship
When:  April 28, 2017
Amount:  $3,000
CSTP and Steilacoom Teacher Leadership Lab
When:  May 11, 2017
Cost Free
CSTP's NBCT Leadership Conference
When:  May 20-21, 2017
Where: Leavenworth, WA
CSTP and North Thurston- Creating High-Functioning PLCs
When:  May 24, 2017
Cost Free
PESB's Teacher Shortage Grant
Deadline:  May 26, 2017
OSPI's NBCT Facilitator Training, Day 1, 2, & 3
When:  June 27-29, 2017
Where: Spokane Area, TBA
WEA's National Board Jump Start 
When:  June 27-30, 2017
Where: Spokane Area, TBA
#CampCSTP: A Deeper Dive into Teacher Leadership
When:  July 17-18, 2017
Where: North Bend, WA
#CampCSTP: Advocacy and Messaging
When:  July 18-19, 2017
Where: North Bend, WA
#CampCSTP: Writers' Retreat
When:  July 19-21, 2017
Where: North Bend, WA
WEA's National Board Jump Start
When:  July 31- August 3, 2017
Where: Seattle, TBA
WEA's National Board Jump Start
When:  August 15-18, 2017
Where: Vancouver, TBA
OSPI's NBCT Facilitator Training, Day 1, 2, & 3
When:  August 14-16, 2017
Where: Vancouver Area, TBA
Register Now for Camp CSTP!

2016 Camp CSTP Participants

It's never too soon to start making your summer time plans and we hope your plans include #CampCSTP! This week-long teacher leadership professional learning opportunity will take place July 17-21, 2017, at the Rainbow Lodge in North Bend. Three sessions will be offered during the week and teachers can pick and choose individual sessions, or attend all three sessions.

Space is very limited in all three sessions and you are encouraged to submit your application as soon as possible.

Session I: A Deeper Dive into Teacher Leadership:

July 17 - 18, 2017
Cost: $150 
Includes: Overnight lodging on July 17 at Rainbow Lodge, lunch, dinner and snacks on July 17, breakfast on July 18, and all session materials.
Description: Explore CSTP's Teacher Leadership Framework - the knowledge, skills and dispositions necessary to be an effective teacher leader. Spend time crafting what your teacher leadership journey might be as you emerge with a strong foundation in teacher leadership.
Register Now for Session I: A Deeper Dive Into Teacher Leadership

Session II: Advocacy and Messaging:

July 18 - 19 , 2017
Cost: $150
Includes: Overnight lodging on July 18 at Rainbow Lodge, lunch, dinner and snacks on July 18, breakfast on July 19, and all session materials.
Description: Understanding how to effectively advocate on education issues you care about is a critical skill for a teacher leader. Develop skills to craft your message that you can adapt to a variety of audiences, whether it is in your own hallway at school or in the halls of Olympia. This deeper dive into advocacy provides you with two days of planning, refining and practicing your message using CSTP tools and feedback from critical friends.
Register Now for Session II: Advocacy and Messaging

Session III: Writers' Retreat:

July 19 - 21, 2017
Cost: $275
Includes: Overnight lodging on July 19 and 20 at Rainbow Lodge, dinner and snacks on July 19, breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks on July 20; breakfast and lunch on July 21, and all session materials.
Description: Develop your writing skills and writing style to elevate your voice and write about your teacher leadership journey. This multi-day writing retreat will give you the gift of dedicated time to write and expert feedback to hone your writing. Participants' writing will be published in a booklet. Check out Teacher Stories Volume 3 from the 2016 Writers' Retreat.
Register Now for Session III: Writers' RetreatLearn More & Save More!

Register for multiple sessions and receive a discount!
  • Register for Sessions I, II, and III for $500 ($75 savings)
  • Register for Sessions II and II for $400 ($25 savings)
  • Register for Sessions I and II for $275 ($25 savings)
About Rainbow Lodge:
Rainbow Lodge is a rustic retreat center nestled in the mountains in North Bend, WA. Each attendee receives their own sleeping room with a washing sink; however, mens' and women's restrooms with showers are shared. Coffee, tea, water, soda and snacks are available 24 hours during your stay.
Claim One of the Last Seats at the 2017 NBCT Leadership Conference


Great news! We have extended the NBCT Leadership Conference registration for a limited time to fill the few remaining seats. This will be your last chance to attend a NBCT Leadership Conference before we go on hiatus in 2018. All NBCTs, included past attendees, will have one last chance to join us at the 4.5 star Sleeping Lady Resort in Leavenworth, WA. Specifically tailored to NBCTs, you will attend sessions on Teacher Leadership, Advocacy and attend two additional breakout sessions of your choosing.

Included in your registration is overnight lodging (in a shared room), 
four gourmet meals in the Kingfisher Restaurant, all materials, and a refreshing learning experience with professional NBCTs from around the state. 

When you are not attending the conference, you will can check out the bavarian-inspired downtown Leavenworth, hike local trails or indulge in the spa at Sleeping Lady.
Who Can Attend:  All NBCTs
When: May 20, 2017 - May 21, 2017
Where: Sleeping Lady Resort in Leavenworth, WA
Cost:  $175
Registration Includes:
  • Saturday Night Lodging at the luxurious Sleeping Lady Resort (shared with 2 other NBCTs per cabin)
  • 4 gourmet meals in the Kingfisher Restaurant - lunch and dinner on May 20, breakfast and lunch on May 21
  • All conference materials 
Breakout Sessions Include:

  OSPI's 2017 NBCT Facilitator Training Registration Open

To ensure consistency across the state for National Board candidates who are seeking this certification, facilitators are required to take Facilitator Training prior to hosting a cohort.

This three-day training hones facilitation knowledge and skills, provides a deeper understanding of the revised National Board process, as well as develops skills in working with adult learners. Attendees must attend all three days to become a facilitator trainer. The cost for this training is $60 per day. Current offerings are:

(Days 1, 2, 3) Tuesday-Thursday, June 27-29
Where: Shadle Park High School, Spokane, WA
Day 1: 9:00am - 4:00pm; Day 2-3: 8:30am - 3:30pm
Cost: $180
(Days 1, 2, 3) Monday-Wednesday, August 14-16
Where: WEA Headquarters, Federal Way, WA
Day 1: 9:00am - 4:00pm; Days 2-3: 8:30am - 3:30pm
Cost: $180
Registration coming soon.  Sign up for notifications.

Learn more about the facilitator trainings on OSPI's website.
NBCT Spotlight - Mandy Manning

Question 1) This year you were nominated and awarded the 2017 NEA Excellence in Teaching for Washington State at the NEA Gala in February. How has this award impacted your career?

Probably the biggest impact the award has had on my career is providing me with several opportunities to share what I do, my knowledge, my ideas, and my experiences with other educators. I was afforded the chance to speak at the recent Washington Education Association Representative Assembly in Spokane this past weekend, April 13-15. I got to share some of my students' stories, as well as, relate the impacts of the policies, budgets, and initiatives of both our state and national legislatures on our refugee and immigrant students. It was an empowering experience. I have also been asked to present about the Newcomer Center at the TURN Conference in Federal Way at the end of the month. Additionally, I've been approached about possibly visiting Guatemala to speak with educators there, and also to visit several school districts around our state to talk about English language learners and our schools. It's very exciting and I hope to continue this kind of work.

As part of the award, I was named a NEA Foundation Global Fellow. This has probably had the biggest impact on my classroom, as I have really examined how I globalize my instruction. Since I teach in the Newcomer Center, which is already an extremely diverse environment, I was challenged by the prospect of further globalizing my instruction. Since we already learn a great deal about the cultures represented within our classroom, I decided we needed to work at extending that learning outside of our classroom. There is one main thing we have worked on this semester, which is a class blog project. We have only just started, but our blog is up and running at - our first post is about flags from the students' countries. We are attempting to make a shareable cultural connection for every unit of our English studies and hopefully start a conversation through which community members can engage in meaningful interaction with these amazing students.

Question 2) You have started the "great schools and great teachers" letter writing campaign with legislators. Can you tell us how the campaign started, and how educators can get involved?

I have been very frustrated by much of the rhetoric surrounding education. One thing I consistently hear is that our public schools are failing and filled with "bad" teachers. I have worked in several states and in several countries and can say, without a doubt, that our schools are not failing. In fact, educators across the country are making a difference every day.

Because of my frustration, I thought hard about actions I could take to try and change the conversation. I've participated in many endeavors, including visiting Capital Hill and meeting with legislatures both in Olympia and here in Spokane. I have also sent post cards and participated in email campaigns, but I was never satisfied. While these activities are wonderful, they weren't quite enough for me - I wanted to send a more personal message.

The seed of the idea came to me two years ago, but I couldn't quite wrap my mind around it. It was at NBCT Hill Day this year, when I was writing a note to my legislators about National Boards, before heading off to the hill, that it all came together. The main problem with current messaging is that we need to help our schools, that without funding we won't be successful, which maintains the idea that schools are struggling. We, of course, always need adequate funding, but educators are doing great things and our legislators need to know that. I believe that if we can steer the conversation toward how great our schools are and how they could be even greater with the support of our government and communities, we will begin to control the conversation and get what we need to continue to be the awesome educators that we already are!

So, once a month, I provide my legislators (from the district in which I live, the district in which I teach, and also my state legislators) with an update of the great things happening in our schools. I write a letter highlighting some of the happenings I see, hear about, experience and send it along. I write around 500 words, to keep it brief, but the stories I tell pack a punch. Only having just started, I am surprised, but please to say that I have already received a personal response from a legislator who does not have the best track record in supporting our schools. This is very exciting!

Next month, for my May update, I am not only writing my personal emails, but will also add a phone call. The call will be short, to remind them to check their email to get the latest update on our great schools, students, and educators. I would love for other educators to get involved. It's simple. Keep your eyes and ears open. Collect a few good stories about an educator, a school, a classroom, a student, jot it down in an email and send it along to all of your senators and representatives for both the district in which you live and in which you work. If you feel so inclined, add a phone call. Make sure to include your contact information and an invite for them to visit your classroom. They need to see what's really happening in our schools, because it's truly astounding. We are amazing!

See Mandy's Sample Letter

Question 3) You have had an amazing, yet busy year in and outside of the classroom. How did you get started in influencing education policy outside of your classroom? What are some tips or tricks you would give to someone looking to get involved?

I got started in influencing education policy outside of my classroom first through my local uniserv, Spokane Education Association. I became a building rep my second year in Spokane, and shortly thereafter became the newsletter editor. Since that time, I have participated in four WEA Rep Assemblies, and two National Education Association Rep Assemblies. These experiences had a huge impact on my perception of my job. I realized I have a responsibility to step outside of my classroom to advocate for my students, my colleagues, and myself. Being an educator isn't something that only happens inside a school. It happens every where.

The second thing I did was work toward and achieve my National Board Certification in English as a New Language. This opened so many doors. The first one I walked through was accepting an invitation to the Teacher Leadership Retreat at Sleeping Lady in Leavenworth put on by CSTP. This retreat was transformative. I learned about advocacy and teacher leadership and how to craft and communicate my message. I followed this up with camp CSTP in the summer of 2015 and learned the power of writing stories about education. Since then, I have sought every opportunity to be a teacher leader and to influence education policy.

There really aren't any tips or tricks to getting involved. All you have to do is say "yes!" It can be intimidating to invite district and legislative leaders into your classroom, but do it. Be fearless. Take a chance. We are the experts. We just have to believe in ourselves and realize that we must make our voice heard. After all, we're educators, we can teach anyone - so, let's teach our legislators about our great schools and what it takes to make them even greater!
Stories From School Roundup 

CSTP's Stories From School bloggers are always busy working on new stories.  Here is a recap of new articles for the past month.