Michelle Reinke, the K-12 science resource teacher for Wayzata Public Schools, was selected by the University of St. Thomas School of Education to participate in the second cohort of a fellowship program designed to produce extraordinary classroom teachers.
Reinke is one of 10 teachers selected from 89 applicants from 25 school districts in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. She will receive a stipend, iPad and graduate-level academic credits. The program’s goal is to bring together a group of accomplished educators and help them further develop their teaching, mentoring, critical-thinking and technology skills.
“This program offers me an opportunity to connect with other Minnesota teacher leaders and collectively engage in work that ultimately improves student learning in all of our respective districts,” said Reinke. “It is through our collaborative work that we challenge both practices and beliefs to enhance our practice. In the end, it is not only the fellows who benefits from this experience, but the teachers and students with whom we work with,” she added.
Applicants were required to have five years of classroom experience and to have shown the kind of dedication and leadership that will help them become extraordinary teachers. Most of the teachers selected for this year’s cohort already have or are working toward their master’s degrees.
“The program provides a setting of support and professional development for teachers who are experienced and want to become experts,” said Dr. Bruce Kramer, dean of St. Thomas’ School of Education. “The ultimate goal is to ensure more learning for students through the development of their teachers.”
The second cohort, twice as large as last year’s inaugural group, consists of four men and six women. They come from nine school districts and teach in the areas of social studies, English and language arts, construction, chemistry, biology, athletics, and mathematics and science.
Reinke serves as the professional-learning-community coach at Wayzata Central Middle School. Previously a middle school science and consumer-science teacher, she holds a bachelor’s in family and consumer education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a master’s in education from the University of Minnesota.
(Information provided by a Wayzata Public Schools press release.)