The Dr. Linda L. Curtis Educator of Promise Award was created in 2019 to recognize DoDEA educators with less than 3 years of teaching experience with DoDEA who demonstrate teacher leadership qualities. Only one Educator of Promise will be the recipient each school year.
The Educator of Promise Award was created by the DoDEA Director to honor the legacy and service of retired senior leader and long- time educator, Dr. Linda L. Curtis. Among the many contributions of Dr Curtis over 33 years of service to DoDEA was her support and recognition of teachers as leaders and the advancement of a teacher leadership initiative across DoDEA.
Dr. Curtis established Focused Collaboration time as a way to empower DoDEA educators to discuss student learning, develop learning outcomes, and collaborate with colleagues with a focus on student achievement. Her belief in the power of teacher voice guided this decision.
In collaboration with the DoDEA Director and other DoDEA stakeholders, Dr. Curtis guided the transition from a practice of recognizing teachers for excellence to enhancing the leadership skills of participating teachers, through a Teacher Leadership Summit (TLS).
The inaugural DoDEA TLS was held at DoDEA Headquarters, September 2016, as a way to “Connect Leaders across the World.” Since the inception of the DoDEA TLS, over 50 educators have been trained in the Teacher Leader Model Standards (TLMS) and have implemented action plans in their communities that addressed an educational issue.
In 2017, Dr. Curtis allowed a Teacher Advisory Board to be formed to collaborate with the three (3) regional Centers for Instructional Leadership (CIL) in order to discuss and make recommendations for teacher leadership across the school system.
In 2018, Dr. Curtis approved and resourced DoDEA’s first Teacher Leader Academy (TLA) in Europe. In 2019, while at the TLA, Dr. Curtis announced the addition of a teacher leadership critical success factor to DoDEA’s Blueprint for Continuous Improvement.
In August 2019, she also authorized the adoption of the definition of teacher leadership and the Teacher Leader Model Standards by DoDEA.
During her career, Dr. Curtis has been instrumental in the advancement of teacher leadership across DoDEA. The Educator of Promise Award will provide a lasting tribute to her efforts and continue to elevate the importance of teacher leadership in empowering learning communities in DoDEA schools around the globe.