“From my second year of teaching, my classroom has been a public place–to current and new teachers, to district official, politicians, and parents,” says Augsburg alumna Jacki Brickman, ’97.
She adds: “Teachers are at their best in their classrooms facilitating learning, and when teachers open their doors to one another and make their classrooms a public place, we are able lead and teach at the same time. Both the teacher observing and the teacher being observed can grow in their practices if they engage in reflective conversation after this shared experience.”
Teachers in Jacki Brickman’s school meet regularly in study groups to share their practices and strategies in order to help each other grow.”
The Augsburg Education Department prepares its students to have the “right and responsibility to exercise leadership,” according to Vicki Olson, associate professor of education. This has never been as evident as when it was announced last October Brickman was one of two teachers in the Minneapolis/St. Paul School Districts awarded the Milken National Educator Award.
The Milken Family Foundation has been recognizing teachers and principals around the country for 20 years for their effectiveness in the classroom, accomplishments outside the classroom, leadership and the ability to inspire students, teachers and the community.
Brickman, a 10-year teacher was surprised by the announcement during an assembly at Hall International Elementary School in Minneapolis where she is now a mentor. Brickman and the other recipient, Martha James from Crossroads Elementary School, will each receive a $25,000 award.
“The Education Department is very proud of Jacki and the contributions she makes every day as a Minneapolis public school teacher,” Olson said. “She lives out her vocation as a teacher leader with generosity of spirit, good humor, and passion for teaching and learning.”
Brickman, who also is an adjunct instructor in Augsburg’s Weekend College program, is the second graduate of Augsburg to receive this prestigious award. Margaret Knutson, ’91, fifth grade teacher at Orono Intermediate School received the award in 2004.
Education is the second largest major at Augsburg with approximately 500 students in the undergraduate and graduate programs.