Leading Effective Academic Practice, or LEAP, is the growth and performance system for teachers that helps ensure we have a great teacher in every classroom. LEAP helps us grow and develop great teachers by helping them identify areas of strength and opportunities for growth. LEAP was developed with input from teachers, school leaders and members of the Denver Classroom Teachers Association for the purpose of defining excellent instruction and providing clear expectations for what great teaching looks like. Learn more about LEAP here.
Most teachers in DPS schools are organized in teams of teachers, led by an instructional leader – a Principal, Assistant Principal, Dean of Instruction or a Teacher Leader. Teachers work in teams to have regular conversations about student work, instructional planning, and working together to meet the needs of their students. Teacher development in DPS includes shoulder-to-shoulder work in classrooms with instructional leaders who know the teacher’s students, improving instruction in real time in service of the students they are supporting today. Schools, networks and the district also offer robust opportunities to engage in formal learning experiences to deepen teachers’ knowledge and skills on Culturally Responsive Teaching and other priorities.
An important part of teacher growth and development in DPS is our Teacher Leadership & Collaboration model. Because DPS schools use a distributive leadership model, teachers benefit from having instructional leaders in their classrooms offering feedback, coaching and support regularly throughout the year. Additionally, teachers have the opportunity to grow in their leadership and impact more students through various teacher leadership roles. Once teachers have an established, strong instructional practice, there are various roles that allow DPS teachers to lead without leaving the classroom. Learn more about TLC and how to apply to teacher leadership roles here.