A leadership story: Learning and leading from CO teacher leader Joe Bolz

Joe Bolz is a teacher leader serving in a hybrid role at George Washington High School in Denver, CO. In addition to teaching high school students every day, Joe is able to observe and coach his colleagues, sharing his expertise and spreading great ideas among the teaching faculty in his school. Because of this hybrid role, Joe has been able to share one of his passions: culturally responsive pedagogy.

In addition to sharing with colleagues, Joe is able to collaborate with teachers across Colorado through the network of teachers involved in CTQ-CO. Over the past two years, he has participated in projects related to culturally responsive teaching, and has shared this work nationally through a blog published with CTQ: “My choice to encompass social justice in my AP Calculus class.”

After going public through his blog, Joe was asked to contribute to a book, writing a chapter sharing his expertise as a classroom teacher and cultural responsive pedagogy advocate. He was also asked to lead professional development in other states and facilitate social justice workshops at national events like ECET2 Seattle. Joe continues to impact his students and colleagues at George Washington High School, but because of his willingness to share and lead, he is now impacting students and teachers across Colorado and around the United States.

In May 2016, Joe presented the opening session at the Emerging Knowledge Forum in Denver. Using the Ignite presentation model, he shared his story of leading through his passion while staying focused on meeting the needs of the students in his classroom every day. His presentation provided evidence and local context for CTQ’s 2016 report: “Teacher leadership & deeper learning for all students.”

Please watch and share Joe’s message as a way to promote authentic teacher leadership, educational equity, and systems support for deeper learning.

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