In the keynote address, Dr. Matthew Springer provided an overview of the research on how great teaching impacts student learning and shared findings on education policy ideas that can support the recruitment, development, and retention of great teachers.


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Matthew Bristow-Smith

Principal, Edgecombe Early College High School; 2019 Wells Fargo North Carolina Principal of the Year

Dr. Matthew Springer

Hussman Distinguished Professor of Education Reform, UNC-Chapel Hill

In this panel discussion key education experts provided perspectives of how North Carolina’s teacher recruitment challenges are felt by students, educators, and educator preparation programs from PreK through higher education.



Leah Carper

Teacher, Northern Guilford High School; 2022 Burroughs Wellcome Fund North Carolina Teacher of the Year

Dr. Valerie Bridges

Superintendent, Edgecombe County Public Schools; 2022 Craig A. Phillips NC Superintendent of the Year

Dr. Alfred Bryant, Jr.

Dean of the School of Education and Human Sciences, Campbell University

Keiyonna Dubashi

Executive Director, Profound Ladies

Dr. Kimberly Gold

Associate Vice President of Academic Programs, North Carolina Community College System

Dr. Anthony Graham

Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Winston-Salem State University


Additional Resources:

State Superintendent Catherine Truitt shared a video with Inspirations from state education and policy leaders, then frames the objectives of the draft Pathways to Excellence for Teacher Professionals plan.  Then Julie Pittman, State Superintendent’s Special Advisor on Teacher Engagement, moderated a discussion about the draft Pathways plan with Maureen Stover, PEPSC Subcommittee co-chair & 2020 NC Teacher of the Year and Dr. Van Dempsey, PEPSC Chair & Dean of the Watson College of Education at UNC-Wilmington. They discussed the ways in which the draft Pathways plan seeks to develop a teacher pipeline that is robust and calibrated to fit the needs of North Carolina’s public schools. They also discussed feedback they have received from teachers and other members of the public, inviting the audience to continue to provide feedback as the plan evolves.


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Dr. Van Dempsey

Dean of the Watson College of Education at UNC-Wilmington; Chair, PEPSC

Julie Pittman

Special Advisor on Teacher Engagement, Office of the State Superintendent, NC DPI; 2018 Western Region Teacher of the Year

Maureen Stover

Teacher, North Carolina Virtual Public Schools; 2020 Burroughs Wellcome Fund NC Teacher of the Year; Member, PEPSC

Superintendent Catherine Truitt

State Superintendent for North Carolina, NC DPI



Email questions and comments about the Pathways Plan to


Additional Resources:

NOTE: Due to technical difficulties, recordings of the 2022 North Carolina Education Innovation Lab breakout sessions will be temporarily unavailable. Please check back in towards the end of the month to view these recordings and share them across your networks. Thank you for your patience, and pardon our dust!

This breakout session explored opportunities to develop teacher apprenticeship models across North Carolina, examined the various types of candidates who may be eligible, and explored potential financial assistance.



Kathryn Castelloes

Director, Apprenticeship NC

Tammi Ward

Interim Superintendent, Hertford County Schools

Dr. Hank Weddington

Dean of the College of Education, Lenoir-Rhyne University

This breakout session provided an overview of research around new and innovative ways to measure teacher effectiveness, including reliable and valid student surveys and new approaches to teacher evaluation.


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Dr. Thomas Kane

Walter H. Gale Professor of Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Dr. Lynn Moody

Strategic Advisor, SparkNC; Former Superintendent, Rowan-Salisbury School District


Additional Resources:

This breakout session shared more about the Advanced Teaching Roles initiative and about the impact that Advanced Teaching Roles are making in Guilford County Schools.


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Nikki Buxton

Multi-Classroom Leader, Welborn Middle School, Guilford County Schools

Abe Hege

Principal, Fairview Elementary School, Guilford County Schools

Dr. Sean McWherter

Director of Restart Programs, Guilford County Schools


Additional Resources:

This breakout session provided an overview of how micro-credentials are being developed and utilized across the state, and shared more about how professional advancement accounts could help support teacher growth.



Dr. Jackie Ennis

Dean of the School of Education, Barton College

Erin Shoemaker

Executive Director of Learning & Teaching, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

Dr. Thomas R. Tomberlin

Senior Director of Education Preparation, Licensure, and Performance, NC DPI

This year’s Innovation Lab theme was Converging to Strengthen Teacher Recruitment and focused on the many organizations, entities, and initiatives converging around the critical issues of teacher recruitment, licensure, advancement, and retention in North Carolina, including those listed below: