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Spirited Practice And Renewed Courage

The Program & Application Process


The Friends Council's Spirited Practice and Renewed Courage (SPARC) program is a leadership development program based on principles from Parker Palmer's "Courage to Teach" work. Together, over a two-year cycle, the group explores personal and professional growth through critical reflection, dialogue, and feedback. Teachers from Friends schools are selected to take part in this learning community and use collaborative inquiry and reflective tools for self-directed professional development.

SPARC is in its seventh cycle, and the ripple effects of this spiritual leadership program are gaining strength. Over 170 Friends school educators have now experienced this unique program, with many schools sending teams of two or more faculty members to participate. Schools report experiencing a deeper engagement of the Quaker dimension in their schools and classrooms as SPARCers return to share reflective tools with their colleagues. SPARC participants emerge as confident faculty leaders contributing to collegial professional development in their schools through accreditation processes, sharing clearness protocols as a tool to connect with teenagers, co-leading a school's Quaker self-study process, and more.

The SPARC program is based on the principles of teacher formation from Parker Palmer's "Courage to Teach" work. A group of two-dozen teachers from Friends schools are selected to take part in this collaborative community, using reflective tools for self-directed professional development. Together, over a two-year cycle, the group explores the art and calling of teaching.

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Program Leadership

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