Jennifer Green is the CEO and co-founder of Urban Teachers. She is a veteran urban educator of 25 years, whose career has focused on improving classroom instruction. Prior to launching Urban Teachers, Jennifer was the director of curriculum and instruction for Baltimore City’s public high schools. In 2004, Jennifer was named by the Baltimore Business Journal as one of Baltimore City’s “Top 40 under 40.” Jennifer earned her M.Ed from Harvard University and her B.A. from Boston University.

The potential of this group is enormous, and I’m looking forward to working with and learning from my colleagues.

Why did you decide to join Deans for Impact?

I’m thrilled to be part of a forward-looking, entrepreneurial group of deans who are willing to challenge the status quo in how we prepare teachers. We have so much ground to cover before we are collectively preparing teachers who are ready to teach on their first day; getting to that point will require innovative thinking and bold action. The potential of this group is enormous and I’m looking forward to working with and learning from my colleagues.

What is one pivotal moment in your career in educator preparation that left a positive impact on you or others?

Prior to launching Urban Teachers, I worked in Baltimore City’s central office. I’ll never forget a day that I visited an early career teacher. When I visited her classroom she had run out of desks for her 40 students, so some students were at desks, others were on the radiator, or on the floor. The room was utterly silent except for the teacher working side by side with one student on a reading assessment. The rest of the class was reading independently in books that they had selected, immersed in what they were doing. This was the result of extensive training for the teacher and appropriate curriculum, in a district where many teachers believed children couldn’t or wouldn’t read.

What most excites you about the opportunity to transform the field of educator preparation in the years ahead?

Too many first-year teachers have the experience that I did. When teachers enter the field unprepared, students pay the price. My 25-year career has been spent in urban education, where we see far too many first-year teachers because of the high teacher-turnover rates. The impact of these new teachers on the student achievement gap is significant. The good news is that this is a solvable problem, and the one I am most excited to address.

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