Teacher Forum

Teacher Forum was founded in 1998 to advance teacher leadership in Virginia Beach City Public Schools and to serve as an advisory group to the superintendent and other school system leaders. At the beginning of each school year, new members are invited to attend a Teacher Forum Orientation where they receive an overview on the organization as well as information on its plans and responsibilities for the school year. Teacher Forum is governed by a Leadership Council, which includes the current citywide Teacher of the Year, former citywide Teachers of the Year and finalists. Current building Teachers of the Year serve as liaisons to the Teacher Forum Leadership Council.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Teacher Forum is to recognize teachers of the year; promote teacher leadership; provide teachers a channel for communication in all facets of educational issues; and partner with school administration, school board and lawmakers in progressive educational advancement.

Teacher Forum Initiatives

National Speaker Series: In support of the division's strategic framework, Compass to 2020: Charting the Course, the Teacher Forum Leadership Council and VBCPS sponsor a National Speaker Series open to VBCPS employees. Speakers have included educational authors, motivational speakers, college professors, National Teachers of the Year and other writers and leaders.

Tagged by the Superintendent Award: Each school year, two employees are identified from every school for having made a significant contribution or positive impact on others. The selected employees receive a Teacher Forum lanyard and a recognition letter from the superintendent.

I Make a Difference Award: Presented on a weekly basis, this award recognizes those individuals who make a difference in their schools. The first recipient chooses the next recipient, creating an on-going cycle of honoring staff members.

Citywide Teacher Forum Event: This event is offered to past and present Teachers of the Year and typically involves panel or roundtable discussions on any number of division initiatives, educational topics or other programming.

Benefits to Teachers

  • Emphasizes professionalism and leadership.
  • Expands teachers' vision beyond a single classroom in a particular building.
  • Generates energy and ideas as concerned teachers seek ways to improve education.
  • Increases knowledge of professional community, educational policy, and content area.

Benefits to Administrators

  • Provides the teachers' perspective on policy issues.
  • Creates a strong sense of partnership among teachers, administrators, and policy makers.
  • Gains teacher support of administrators through a broader understanding of total school operations 
    and management.
  • Promotes teacher utilization of current research for educational improvement.