MORE THAN 200 CONNECTICUT TEACHERS TO ENGAGE THE WORLD THIS SUMMER TO BRING EXPERIENCES BACK TO THE CLASSROOM
On APRIL 5, 2017, the partnership of the Dalio Foundation, Fund for Teachers (FFT), and 60 public school districts across Connecticut celebrates 210 Connecticut teachers receiving professional learning grants totaling more than $800,000. As FFT Fellows, these passionate and dedicated teachers will spend part of their summer vacations traveling around the world to pursue personally-designed learning experiences in various fields and disciplines. Teachers will document their remarkable journeys, and when they return, they will apply what they learned to enhance student experiences in their classrooms.
Above, Ms. Brown at Global Communications Academy was 1 of 5 HPS teachers surprised with summer trips by the Dalio Foundation’s Fund for Teachers.
“The Dalio Foundation and Fund for Teachers supports teachers who identify needs and opportunities in their school communities, seek out solutions, and strive for excellent teaching and learning by demonstrating awareness, inquiry, empathy, and resilience. We are proud to add these newly-selected Connecticut FFT Fellows to our cohort of teacher experts and leaders,” said Karen Webb, FFT Executive Director.
The 210 teachers represent small towns and urban communities across Connecticut. In total, 145 teacher-created professional learning projects are being awarded grant funding, enabling teachers working in 123 schools in 60 public school districts to embark on summer learning odysseys in 48 countries for the benefit of thousands of students.
This year’s FFT application process showcased an inspiring theme of teachers helping other teachers to pursue their professional goals and passions. Dozens of 2016 FFT Fellows were instrumental in recruiting and increasing the number of Connecticut teachers who applied for FFT fellowships in 2017, and many of the planned learning projects rely on teacher-to-teacher sharing across cultures. FFT Fellows will explore topics including: education leadership, history, kinesiology, language through cultural immersion, literature, math, science, social justice, special education, technology, and the visual and performing arts.
“This is a rare and powerful experience for teachers to shape their own professional development. Fund for Teachers encourages teachers to create their dream professional learning scenarios and then allows them to live those dreams. It has been one of the most remarkable and engaging experiences in my professional life,” said Joel Hinrichs, 2016 Connecticut FFT Fellow of Branford High School.
Hart ford Public Schools teachers from the following schools received awards:
University High School (1 teacher)
Global Communications Academy (2 teachers)
Bulkeley High School (1 teacher)
Asian Studies Academy (1 teacher)
“Fund for Teachers empowers educators to pursue their passions and find creative ways to strengthen their practice and elevate student learning,” said Commissioner of Education Dianna R. Wentzell. “I am so inspired by the journeys and projects teachers right here in Connecticut will embark on through this incredible opportunity. I want to thank Fund for Teachers and the Dalio Foundation for helping Connecticut teachers turn their creative ideas into reality.”
For the third year in a row, the Dalio Foundation has supported FFT and public school districts in Connecticut to provide professional learning grants for teachers. “I am inspired by the teachers’ commitment to instill in their students the thrill of learning. To partner with these 60 school districts and Fund for Teachers to help bring this about brings me great joy,” said Barbara Dalio of the Dalio Foundation.
About Fund for Teachers
FFT annually awards grants to Pre-K through 12 teachers to pursue self-designed summer fellowships for professional learning. Connecticut’s FFT Fellows were chosen by local selection committees comprised of teachers, administrators, union leaders, and community stakeholders. Through the rigorous selection process, every fellowship application was read three times and carefully reviewed against FFT’s objective rubric.
Since 2001, FFT has awarded more than $27 million in grants, empowering nearly 7,500 teachers to explore their passions, deepen their scholarship, and enhance their craft. FFT Fellows have studied in 145 countries on all 7 continents.
FFT Fellows become powerful change agents in their schools and communities. They inspire and challenge their students to apply their learning to real-world issues, embrace perseverance, take ownership of their learning, and build empathy of others. For more information, visit: www.fundforteachers.org.