Theme of the month

Theme of the Month

Join us each month as we focus on a topic of interest to STEM Teacher Leaders with a webinar panel, open discussion, resources and blog post. 

December Expert Panel: Leading without Leaving the Classroom

Recorded December 5, 2019 at 7:30PM EST

*There is a technical glitch with this recording (Presenter Barnett Berry's video is out of synch with the other presenters). This is not representational of the live event and we are working with Adobe Connect to resolve this issue.


Description: In our first interactive online panel, facilitated by Jay Labov (Retired Director of the National Academies Teacher Advisory Council) and Margo Murphy (high school science educator and recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching), we discuss the challenges and opportunities that exist for teachers who want to stay in the classroom to work directly with students but also want to continue developing professionally as a STEM teacher leader.

The panel includes several perspectives on STEM teacher leadership including two classroom teachers who have built strong leadership capacity (Julie Olson and Jose Rivas), a former teacher who has left the classroom and who now works as a professional development leader with teachers in her district (Claudia Walker), and an expert in the scholarly research on leading without leaving the classroom (Barnett Berry).


Margo Murphy is a recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, and is currently a high school science educator.
Jay Labov led the Teacher Advisory Council at the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine for many years.


Claudia Walker is Singapore Math and Science coach at Murphey Traditional Academy, a K-5 elementary public school in North Carolina. She is a former member of the National Academy of Sciences Teacher Advisory Council (TAC), has received grants to support STEM instruction, and has participated in several local and national STEM projects.

Jose Rivas left the engineering world 16 years ago to pursue a career in education. As the physics and engineering teacher at Lennox Math, Science and Technology Academy, he has created minds-on and inquiry based instruction that has been recognized nationally. He was awarded this year with the Presidential Award for Math and Science Teaching, in 2016 with the Northrop Engineering Excellence Award and in 2015 with the NSTA Shell Science Teaching Award. Jose has served on several committees which have included Infiniscope, the California Committee on School Accreditation, the Academy of Science Teacher Advisory Council and is a Science Friday Educator Collaborator.

Julie Olson, Science Teacher, Mitchell High School, Mitchell, SD. An educator for 32 years, teaching science at Mitchell High School and Mitchell Second Chance High School for at-risk students in Mitchell, SD. She was a member of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) national writing team (Life Sciences) and helped write and translate the current South Dakota state standards (NGSS modified). She is co-editor for the newsletter and past-President of the South Dakota Science Teachers Association. Ms. Olson has a BS in Biology with a minor in Chemistry, an MA in Biology.

Barnett Berry is a research professor at the University of South Carolina, where he also serves as the founding director of The Accelerator for Learning and Leadership for South Carolina (ALL4SC) — marshalling the assets of an entire university to fuel community-based schooling and a comprehensive educator development system need to serve all children and their needs and aspirations. Previously, Barnett led CTQ – a non-profit he founded in 1999, to ignite change inside of the public education system fueled by the best practices and ideas of teachers. For over three decades most of Barnett’s scholarship and advocacy work has centered on creating the conditions so teachers can lead reform, not be the target of it.