Chicago Teacher Residency hosts Partnership School Visit at Marquette School of Excellence

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Publish date: January 8, 2024
Categories: News from the Network
Post author: Jacob Pieczynski

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On Thursday, December 7th, the Chicago Teacher Residency (CTR) held “Impact in Action: CTR Partnership School Visit,” providing attendees with a unique opportunity to witness the impactful outcomes of the CTR program in-person. The event brought together AUSL supporters, Partnership School Principals and Assistant Principals, Program Partners, and future Residents.

Marquette School of Excellence and their tremendously passionate and talented teachers generously hosted the event. Marquette School of Excellence is a PK-8 school on Chicago’s Southwest side that serves over 1000 students, of which 43.1% speak limited English, 77.4% are low income, 15.5% are Diverse Learners, and 98.4% identify as students of color. The school has been a CTR training site for 10 years. Over that time, 87 Residents have trained on-site and 16 current Marquette School of Excellence teachers are former CTR residents.

After a comprehensive overview of the CTR program, attendees then participated in a panel discussion featuring a current CTR Resident and Mentor Teacher pair. Each CTR Resident is placed with a Mentor Teacher and embedded within their classroom for 1000+ hours of training throughout the school year. Mentor Teachers are teacher leaders for CTR Residents, opening up their experience, passion, and skillset to help foster confident, responsive, and highly-effective teachers.

Attendees had the opportunity to hear Ashley Pate, CTR Mentor and 7th grade ELA teacher, and Grace O’Keeffe, CTR Middle School ELA Resident, describe what it’s like to learn and grow together within their mentorship. 

While talking about their partnership, Ms. Pate (Resident Mentor) said, “I really appreciate our reflective conversations. I see the growth every day and you can really see the growth over time.” 

Ms. Okeeffe (CTR Resident) shared her own insight on what makes their partnership so valuable, saying, “I know we can be honest with each other. Ms. Pate will tell me what I’m doing great and what I can improve. We can be vulnerable with each other and that’s really valuable!”

Ms. Okeeffe (CTR Resident) also shared what her learning looks like in practice, adding, “Ms. Pate and my [CTR Associate Director] coach, Brook, give me glows and grows after I teach and those are so valuable!”

AUSL provides a CTR Associate Director coach and ongoing professional development to aid both Residents and Mentor Teachers throughout the year so they’re supported in their journeys together.

A highlight of the event was the school tour, offering a firsthand look at current and former CTR Residents’ classrooms in action as they put the “teacher moves” taught in their residency into practice. Attendees had the chance to observe CTR Residents engaged in bilingual instruction, individual instruction, small group instruction, and whole class instruction, watching for key look-for’s as they visited classrooms.

The event concluded with a closing session featuring representatives from AUSL, CTR, and Marquette School of Excellence Principal Marzano, bringing together key contributors to this partnership to share their perspectives and reflections on the impactful work being done.

“Impact in Action” truly lived up to its name, offering attendees a remarkable opportunity to engage with CTR Residents, CTR Mentor Teachers, and CTR training staff. The event served as a platform to showcase the transformative power of the CTR and the partnerships forged with schools, educators, and school leaders.

Thank you to Principal Marzano and the Marquette School of Excellence team for hosting this impactful event!

To learn more about the Chicago Teacher Residency program or to apply, visit

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