One of the most important decisions that a parent will make for their child is choosing their school. Thankfully, we live in a state that offers more public school choice options to parents than in many other states across the country, and I hope everyone takes a moment to celebrate these policies in Colorado.
This week is National School Choice Week, which is a unique time of year for students, parents, teachers, community leaders, and other stakeholders to come together to reflect on the progress that has been made toward empowering families through school choice.
As we celebrate, it is not only important to recognize the positive impact school choice has had on families, but to also take notice of the ways in which school choice has had a positive effect on the teaching profession. As a charter school teacher, school choice has changed my life and my career in a very positive way. I am proud to be a teacher at a charter school that provides a unique educational option for students.
School choice has opened new pathways for teachers to have more career choices, creating a more fulfilling experience for many. In states like Colorado, teachers are able to choose if they want to teach in a traditional, public charter, virtual, innovation or some other type of public choice school. The existence of these various school environments makes it possible for students and teachers to find a school that best fits their needs.
As a member of the Professional Association of Colorado Educators (PACE), which supports teachers in all school settings, it is wonderful to join with educators from across the state in a partnership with National School Choice Week.
To celebrate, PACE is hosting events in Denver and Colorado Springs to bring teachers, parents, and other community members together to talk about the positive impacts school choice has had on the teaching profession and student achievement. More information can be found at www.coloradoteachers.org.
If you are a teacher that has ever wondered what it is like to teach in a choice environment or you are a parent thinking about enrolling your kids in a charter or other choice school, these events are a great opportunity to learn more about school choice. There will be food and drinks, but more importantly there will be teachers and parents from public charter and other choice schools there to talk about their experiences and answer your questions.
It is estimated that there are now over 6,000 charter school teachers in Colorado, and that number will continue to increase each year. Now is a time for educators to unite together in celebration of the great challenges and incredible opportunities that school choice offers to our profession.
By giving each stakeholder an opportunity to make choices in education, our schools will become places where students, parents and teachers are working together to improve achievement.
Teresa Brown is an elementary grades teacher at Academy for Advanced and Creative Learning, a Colorado Springs charter school.
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