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Perspective | Public School Forum of NC launches Rural Teacher Leader Network

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This week, the Public School Forum of North Carolina convened its inaugural cohort of the newly launched Rural Teacher Leader Network (RTLN), which is designed to bring together diverse groups of educators across North Carolina who seek to strengthen their practice, foster community with teacher leaders from across other rural districts, and develop their own leadership capacity in order to guide other teachers in their schools. The network aims to create a strong and lasting community of rural educators with a focus on equity, trauma-informed practice, global education, and teacher leadership. 

“We are thrilled to kick-off the first cohort of the Rural Teacher Leader Network with a phenomenal group of elementary, middle, and high school educators serving communities across the rural, eastern part of our state,” said Dr. Mary Ann Wolf, the Forum’s president and executive director. “We had a very strong applicant pool of teachers who wished to participate in this opportunity, which only reinforced the need and demand for a program like the Rural Teacher Leader Network. The selected educators for this cohort will come away with an experience that we believe will equip them to lead their fellow educators and students in their communities in transformative ways.” 

The RTLN was made possible through a generous grant made by the Anonymous Trust, which will initially support this inaugural cohort that comprises educators from Clinton City, Duplin County, Greene County, Jones County, Onslow County, Sampson County, and Wayne County schools. This grant will provide support for another cohort beginning in the summer of 2022. 

The programming will be facilitated by the Public School Forum in partnership with Leading EDge Learning. The Forum hopes to expand the RTLN to other regions across the state in future years. Additional outreach and convening support was provided by the Southeast Education Alliance RESA, which includes several districts represented by educators in the Rural Teacher Leader Network. We would like to congratulate this year’s cohort members:

  • Dana Bergeron, Jones County Schools
  • Christopher Brothers, Onslow County Schools
  • Syrena Bryant, Wayne County Schools
  • Arlisa Broadnax-Dail, Onslow County Schools
  • Albertia Burgess, Onslow County Schools
  • Mykkia Combs, Jones County Schools
  • Kelly Dillman, Onslow County Schools
  • Briana Edgerton, Wayne County Schools  
  • Kristen Ess, Sampson County Schools
  • Kimberly Gagliano, Wayne County Schools
  • Colleen Gallagher, Duplin County Schools
  • Vanessa Garcia, Clinton City Schools
  • Jane Greene, Duplin County Schools
  • Alisha Gulick, Sampson County Schools
  • Barbara Hayes, Jones County Schools
  • Mercedes Hopkins, Wayne County Schools
  • Megan Hunt, Onslow County Schools
  • Jennifer Jackson, Sampson County Schools
  • Leah Jorgensen, Onslow County Schools
  • Kimberly Kammerer, Jones County Schools
  • Kristen Kane, Duplin County Schools
  • Emily Lahr, Greene County Schools
  • Cynthia Lee, Sampson County Schools
  • Thomas Loftin, Greene County Schools
  • Vevlyn Lowe, Clinton City Schools
  • Arleta Maria Lupa, Onslow County Schools
  • Chelsea McGraw, Sampson County Schools
  • Anna Maxwell, Onslow County Schools
  • Stephanie Orosco, Wayne County Schools
  • Casie Penner, Wayne County Schools
  • Catherine Ruiz, Sampson County Schools
  • Meagan Stephens, Onslow County Schools
  • Sherida Suggs, Wayne County Schools
  • Kimberly Sutton, Wayne County Schools
  • Kristen G Taylor, Greene County Schools
  • Kristine Travers, Sampson County Schools
  • Carol Williams, Sampson County Schools
  • Katelyn Williams, Onslow County Schools
  • Johanna Wood, Wayne County Schools

Editor’s note: The Anonymous Trust supports the work of EducationNC.

Public School Forum of North Carolina

Since 1986, the Public School Forum of North Carolina has been an indispensable and nonpartisan champion of better schools and the most trusted source in the state for research and analysis on vital education issues. We bring together leaders from business, education, and government to study education issues, develop ideas, seek consensus, and ultimately inform and shape education policy. We do that through research, policy work, innovative programs, advocacy, and continuing education for educators and policymakers.