Community Values and Norms

As a teacher-powered community we strive to rise above traditional education dichotomies and tensions and remain focused on creating student-centered learning communities designed and led by professional educators at the school site. We are a respectful, inclusive, and passionate group dedicated to improving the education system and serving all students in our local communities.

Community norms create the ability to respond effectively to emotional challenges. Drawing on Elena Aguilar’s work, community norms should:

  • create conditions to be able to work from emotions toward a positive outcome
  • create an affirmative environment
  • encourage proactive problem solving

With this in mind, our Teacher-Powered Community values and norms are as follows:

  • Teacher-powered schools are a means to create equitable, high quality, culturally affirming, student-centered learning environments. At the end of the day, we do our work with and for the benefit of students.
  • Teacher-powered schools are designed to serve the unique needs of their students and community. This work is never done in isolation and relies on the deep partnership with students, families, and community members.
  • Teacher-powered governance models lie on a spectrum, with some teams wanting and securing more or less autonomy than others; all are valued. It is up to the individual teams to decide which autonomies are needed to best serve their students and staff.
  • National, state, and local teacher unions are valuable allies and often support teacher-powered teams and opportunities.
  • Teacher-powered teams are successful in district and charter settings. It is up to each team to decide the best setting in which to secure authority and autonomy. Regardless of setting we have much to share and learn from each other.
  • Principals and administrators are key allies in teacher-powered schools, helping the group of teachers to facilitate shared purpose, advocate for the decisions of the team, and be a resource. We welcome all educators and supporters committed to these values.