Deirdre has six years of experience as a secondary English teacher in both urban and suburban schools. She teaches Masters and Doctoral students at Hunter College and Teachers College, where she helped to develop the School Change course with Dr. Thomas Hatch. In her work as TA for this course over a three-year time period, she helped Dr. Hatch experiment with innovative teaching methods by developing a website and Twitter account that support student-directed learning. In the Fall of 2016, she taught her own section of School Change, and brought in guest speakers from the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE), the Institute of Play, Bronx Arena Transfer High School, and Eskolta School Research and Design. Working again with Dr. Hatch, Deirdre led a study of the NYCDOE Local Measures of Student Learning, which are used to evaluate teacher and student performance in New York City Schools. Her dissertation research draws upon this work by focusing on how English and Social Studies teachers in grades 6-12 use data derived from high-stakes teacher evaluation policies for instructional purposes. Deirdre has presented her research at the Literacy Research Association Conference (LRA), the National Council for the Teachers of English Conference (NCTE), and the American Education Research Association Conference (AERA).
Deirdre is also the Managing Editor of the website International Ed News, where she shares online education news from around the world on Twitter, conducts interviews and writes scans that summarize relevant news on key issues, and conducts interviews with international experts. She is also the founding editor of an online publication called Esteem: Conversations Between Educators. Esteem publishes long-form interviews between doctoral students and the researchers, scholars, activists, leaders, and educators they admire. This year, she is conducting a year-long interview series with an international group of women who have been using Twitter to engage in a public conversation on the topic of women in education leadership.
Currently, Deirdre is a Research and Design Facilitator with Eskolta School Research and Design. This work brings her into New York City high schools on a regular basis to work with teams of teachers, as well as school and district leaders, on projects related to school improvement and student learning. In this position, Deirdre supports teams working on school change efforts, such as creating course maps aligned with school-wide literacy goals, and using the Hess Matrix (which combines Bloom’s Taxonomy with Depth of Knowledge) to help teachers develop questions that promote higher order thinking. She has worked with online data trackers and created reflection tools to support teacher learning from student data, including classwork and test score data. She has also helped to create instructional resources that can be used in the classroom and support teacher learning.
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