Educator leadership has the power to transform student learning. It puts the power of the teaching profession exactly where it should be — in the hands of teachers working in classrooms with students. As effective leaders, educators   can help transform student growth, elevate their fellow professionals and lead district-wide initiatives all with the aim of raising achievement and making a difference in the lives of each individual student.

The Cadre of Distinguished Educators offers the David Douglas School District the opportunity to identify, elevate and develop the capacity of the highly diverse, talented and exceptional educators throughout our P-20 system.CODE_Brochure

Cadre of Distinguished Educators: Purpose

Educators hold  immense knowledge about their profession. They are the experts of the classroom in all five domains: Planning and Preparation, the Classroom Environment, Instruction, Professional Responsibilities, and Student Learning and Growth Goals.

District decisions should involve educator voice, and district initiatives should include educators along the way, seeking their expertise on the broadest range of issues — curriculum, professional learning, student proficiency, data collection, facilities, and much more.

The Cadre of Distinguished Educators identifies leaders through a reflective application process, classroom visitations, and interviews in order to bring a variety voices to the table.

Cadre of Distinguished Educators: A Definition

A distinguished educator in David Douglas first and foremost has a proficient practice, as defined through the Teacher Growth and Evaluation System and the David Douglas Teacher Performance Standards. These educators have made their classrooms, students and colleagues a priority in their professional lives.

Additionally, distinguished educators constantly seek to grow in their profession specifically in ways that will lead to stronger outcomes for their students. Professional growth takes many forms:

  • Perfecting an instructional system or method;
  • Taking on building, program and district leadership roles;
  • Using student data dynamically;
  • Or developing a deeper understanding of content.

Distinguished educators seek out and invite feedback from peers and administrators, welcoming the opportunity to continually grow.Distinguished educators also look for opportunities to help their colleagues grow. They do not hide their skills and expertise, but look for opportunities to share with other teachers so their peers may grow — and help their students grow — as well.

Distinguished educators come from all subjects, all levels, and all specialties. One may excel in a specific instructional strategy or curricular focus. Others may excel in leadership and working with other educators. The hallmark of a distinguished educator lies in the pursuit of lifelong learning and ongoing professional reflection.

Benefits of Joining the Cadre

Professional educators have more than enough work on their plates. Taking on leadership roles can sometimes feel like one more thing, one more duty that takes away from our core mission: educating students.

Joining the Cadre of Distinguished Educators, however, provides several benefits to teachers.

    • Results for Students: Through shared leadership, educators can identify issues or problems that are barriers to student success and then use their leadership to solve those problems. Educators working together to address issues helps students succeed both academically and socially/emotionally.
    • Influence Decisions: Educators in the advisory track will contribute to decision-making in the district through the CODE Think Tank and Superintendent’s Advisory Council. District leadership will engage with educators in these groups to gain their perspective to inform district-level decisions.
    • Long Range Planning: Members of the CODE Advisory Council will serve as visionaries for the district, engaging in long-term planning and thinking about how to help educators and students be successful in the David Douglas School District.
    • Professional Learning Opportunities: Cadre members will have increased opportunities to lead meaningful professional learning for their colleagues and engage in professional learning. This could include but is not limited to serving as a lab classroom teacher, leading workshops, coaching in your building, facilitating book study groups, vetting curriculum or instructional materials, serving on adoption teams, and more.
    • Compensation: Cadre members who take on additional responsibilities will also receive additional compensation for their work. Compensation could include stipends, additional release time, or materials, among other possibilities.

Applying for CODE

Step One: Nominations
Applicants can self-nominate or colleagues can nominate each other to become members of the cadre. Once identified, all interested nominees will participate in an informational session to learn more about the application process.

Step Two: Application
Nominees who wish to proceed with the application will embark on a reflective application process with ongoing support for applicants in after school meetings. Applicants who submit completed applications will receive a stipend for the time spent working on the application.

Step Three: Visitations
Applicants will host a selection committee to visit their classroom. For non-classroom educators, appropriate visitations will be arranged.

Step Four: Interview
Finally, the selection committee interviews the applicants before recommending them for induction into the cadre. Interviews will occur after the end of the contract day.

Step Five: Induction
The selection committee will use scoring rubrics from the applications, visitations, and interview to recommend educators for induction into the Cadre of Distinguished Educators each Spring. All applicants will receive feedback on their application including areas of strength and areas of growth.

Examples of Opportunities for Cadre MembersCODE_PathwaysGraphic

  • District advisory committees;
  • Instructional coaching in specific areas;
  • Priority access to professional learning opportunities;
  • Leading professional development, either on an ongoing basis or one-time trainings;
  • Lab classroom site;
  • Key trainers (trainer of trainers model):
  • Writing curriculum or assessments to share;
  • CODE Advisory Council;
  • Creating videos of model lessons in various curriculum areas and Professional Teaching Standards;
  • And projects or endeavors proposed by CODE members.

For more information on the Cadre of Distinguished Educators, contact the CODE Coordinator at