Rural Schools Collaborative is proud to announce the second term of the Young Educators’ Advisory Council, featuring five returning early career teacher leaders from the first cohort and four new friends eager to contribute to the group’s work.
In the education sphere, teachers are often the linchpin of supporting both students and community alike. Since our founding, RSC has persisted in elevating the voices and perspectives of rural teachers whenever possible, culminating in the Young Educators’s Advisory Council (YEAC). This cohort was established in 2020 as a way to both give early career rural educators a space to connect and collaborate and for Rural Schools Collaborative to pay teachers for their expertise, experience, and advice.
Visit the Rural Teacher Resiliency Guide
Our 2020-2022 Young Educators Advisory Council cohort worked together to create the Rural Teacher Resiliency Guide, offering advice and strategies to new, early career rural teachers to help them make connections, find balance, and start strong in their new roles.
Hoping to remain responsive and relevant to the actual needs and wishes of educators, RSC's YEA Council invites rural teachers to share thoughts on the recruitment, preparation, placement, and retention of rural teachers. The Council meets quarterly for frank discussions with RSC staff and each other about the state of rural education and pathways into the profession. Along with seeding new content for the Early Career Teacher Resiliency Guide, these discussions ensure that educators themselves help shape the resources and opportunities RSC and its Regional Hub partners offer to teachers nationwide.
The Young Educators’ Advisory Council class of 2024 consists of:
Abigail Parker, Coloma WI
Bridget Larsen, West Plains MO
Emma Rage, Kensal ND
Max Frommelt, Dodgeville WI
McKenzie Campbell, Abingdon IL
Nick Foertsch, Milnor ND
Osbaldo Gonzalez, Nyssa, OR
Shawntasia Butler, Morehead KY
Sidney Freeman, Livingston AL
Theressa Smith, Casper WY
The new YEAC cohort recently met for the first time to get to know each other and begin setting the tone for the next two years of program advising and project collaboration. Reflecting on the past school year, the teachers underscored that while challenges and stressors were rampant, there was still much to celebrate with regard to the relationships built and opportunities found in rural schools and communities.
As they looked forward to the school year ahead, and to the work they wish to do on the Council, they highlighted the need for authenticity and engagement in the rural education sphere. The Councilors shared at length about the importance of giving future teachers more exposure to the realities of being a rural educator. This includes:
Increasing mentoring opportunities for teacher candidates;
Strengthening rural school outreach and teacher recruitment;
Building genuine awareness about the challenges and opportunities of teaching in a rural place;
Fostering connections between rural teachers regionally and nationally; and
Helping teachers make a positive impact and change in their communities.
Rural Schools Collaborative is excited to dive into these topics and more with the ‘22-’24 Young Educators’ Advisory Council over the next two years! Thank you to these nine amazing educators for their time, thoughts, and friendly collaboration!
Reflections from the Inaugural Young Educators’ Advisory Council
June 16, 2022
The cohort of ten early career educators reminisce, celebrate, and share final words of wisdom