ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: Tiered learning for teachers

By Marion Wilson
August 2019
Vol. 40 No. 4
There are multitiered systems of support and varied approaches to support student learning, but what about for adult learners? Adults come into schools, just like children, with prior knowledge, experiences, biases, skill sets, and ways of knowing that influence how they process, retain, and use information. Professional learning should afford teachers tiered opportunities for strengthening practice in a personalized, systematic, and meaningful manner. As a former principal of a struggling elementary school in a large urban district, my work to strengthen teacher practice was not effective until I realized that I had to meet my teachers where they were. I looked at their knowledge of content, pedagogy, personalities, willingness, and ability to do the work, and, most importantly, their belief in our school’s vision and

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Marion Wilson

Marion Wilson ( is a deputy community superintendent in the New York City Department of Education, senior consultant at DeePENN Consulting, and adjunct assistant professor at the City University of New York.


Danielson, C. (2008). The handbook for enhancing professional practice: Using the Framework for Teaching in your school. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.

Drago-Severson, E. (2008). 4 practices serve as pillars for adult learning. JSD, 29(4), 60-63.

Landsberg, M. (2015). The tao of coaching: Boost your effectiveness at work by inspiring and developing those around you. London, England: Profile Books.

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