Teachers from across New York will kick off state’s first-ever summit to elevate the teaching profession; Chancellor Carmen Fariña and UFT head Michael Mulgrew to speak

As a result of a rapidly growing teacher leadership movement, Teaching Matters, the New York City Department of Education, the United Federation of Teachers, ASCD, and a broad array of partners have joined together to launch the inaugural New York Teacher Leadership Summit: Powered by Teach to Lead® this month. Teach to Lead is an initiative jointly convened by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, ASCD, and the U.S. Department of Education, with the mission to advance student outcomes by expanding opportunities for teacher leadership.

The summit will empower teachers from across the state to use their expertise and experience to elevate the teaching profession and drive change in New York schools. Elevating the teaching profession is a core aim of the summit. New York City has already made an unprecedented investment in new teacher leadership roles – the current teacher contract between the New York City Department of Education and the United Federation of Teachers provides structure and support for more than 1,000 teacher leaders in public schools across the city.


Lynette Guastaferro, Executive Director of Teaching Matters, says "I am thrilled at the big tent of organizations that have come together to support teachers to lead in their profession.” 

Amy Way, Executive Director of Teacher Recruitment and Quality at the New York City Department of Education, adds, “Teachers receiving the support and professional development to strengthen their craft must be at the center of any efforts to improve instruction and achievement in the classroom. Teacher leadership is an important and innovative tool in this critical work, and New York City is excited to be participating in this work.”  

The two-day summit is drawing teams of teachers from all over the state. These teams will spend the bulk of their time at the summit refining initiatives they have designed, and then take them back to their schools with developed action plans. Partner organizations will mentor and give feedback to teams as they incubate their ideas. Teacher reviewers have selected 20 participating teams based on proposals submitted.


New York City schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña and UFT President Michael Mulgrew will share remarks. In addition to offering a broad perspective about teacher leadership and its growth, speakers at the event – many of whom are current teachers – will address New York City’s reforms to achieve equity and excellence across all public schools.

Teaching Matters is hosting and organizing the summit and financial support for the summit was provided to ASCD by The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust. The roster of partners backing the event also includes, among others, the UFT; America Achieves; Arizona K-12 Center, Discovery Education, Educators4Excellence;  Eskolta; the Literacy Design Collaborative; and the New Teacher Center.

The summit will be held at 475 Riverside Drive in New York City, Friday, June 17, 8:30am - 5:30pm, and Saturday, June 18, 9:00am - 3:00pm. There will be a press availability Friday evening at 5:30 during the event’s reception.

“The U.S. has learned the hard way that until we respect and position teachers to be change agents in this profession, we won’t make the kind of progress for education we need,” said Guastaferro.

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Teaching Matters is dedicated to increasing teacher effectiveness, one of the most critical factors in student success. Teaching Matters’ services transform how educators work together at urban public schools, helping the most effective teachers develop the skills they need to lead their peers and drive school-wide improvement. They also partner with school leadership to create a work environment that equips teachers to succeed in the classroom.

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