Bigger Community, Bigger Lens

Collaboration, that’s the essence of EdCo’s mission.  Teachers learning from teachers, professionals learning from professionals.  Program Director and EdCo Member, Amy Nystrand recently ‘’sat down” virtually with Jennifer Weinblatt, 6th grade English teacher at Harding Academy, and Jennifer confirmed just how powerful the reach of that collaboration can be.  

*originally published March 9, 2021

“When I was introduced to EdCo it looked like a place where you came to talk to other teachers, that was the purpose. To make teachers talking to teachers and meeting teachers the whole focus, I thought was genius, and then the kinds of learning opportunities that would be offered to us were so current, and they were so immediately practical and useful,” she says.

However, it goes beyond the learning opportunities.  “It has offered me exposure to so many ideas”.  Not only has she loved visiting other schools for the various EdCo events, getting the chance to see where learning is taking place, but also learning about the similarities and differences across public, private, and charter schools here in Nashville.  “It has exponentially reinforced my respect for teachers who have worked with huge bureaucracies. It really makes me want to scream out against people who rail against the system, ‘this is what’s wrong with public education’. Many things are wrong with public education, but it’s not the teachers,” she exclaimed.

“I love how it has enhanced my understanding of what different kinds of teachers in different kinds of communities have to go through, and yet how common everybody’s commitment is, how professional people are, and even how in very different environments we can all exchange ideas.”  

Collaboration, that’s the essence of EdCo’s mission, and we are incredibly grateful to all the educators that come together to allow that to happen.  The brain power, commitment, and heart that are brought to the table offer experiences like Jennifer’s to happen.  What that means for our community, for our students, is invaluable.  

The Educators\’ Cooperative is a non-profit organization that provides a professional learning community for K-12 teachers. Created for teachers by teachers in 2016, EdCo provides professional development and support for educators to collaborate across sectors, disciplines, and career stages. EdCo aims to revolutionize teacher development and leadership by focusing on the essential agency, autonomy, and common ground all teachers share. EdCo is based in Nashville, Tennessee with a reach far beyond that physical location and potential for replication in communities throughout the nation. When educators collaborate, the future of education is greater than the sum of its parts.   

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