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To show support and gratitude for health care workers, first responders, and other essential workers keeping communities safe during the COVID-19 emergency. Old Dominion University is illuminating its Education Building blue during May, as part of the national #LightItBlue campaign. Photo Chuck Thomas/ODU

ODU Doctoral Student Kate Maxlow Earns State Leadership Award for Leadership in Teaching, Learning

By Megan Shearin

Kate Maxlow, a Ph.D. student in Old Dominion University's Darden College of Education and Professional Studies, was recently named the recipient of the Virginia Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (VASCD) Leadership Award. The award is presented annually to one Virginia educator for outstanding leadership in teaching and learning.

Maxlow will receive her award during the annual VASCD Conference in Richmond on February 18.

Maxlow, who is earning her doctoral degree in educational leadership, currently serves as Hampton City Schools' director of innovation and professional learning. Maxlow works to guarantee that all instructors have access to quality professional development that is both engaging and useful. One of her primary interests is in instructional methodologies that engage students, both in the learning and in feeling like a part of their community. She works with colleagues from the Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment department to develop a guaranteed and viable curriculum program that is aligned with standards and student needs by incorporating a playbook of instructional methodologies, strategies, and assessments.

"This award is truly a representation of the work that students, staff, and the Hampton community put into Hampton City Schools every day," said Maxlow. "I have been lucky enough to work in a division where innovation is encouraged and everyone works together for the benefit of the young people we serve. It has been an honor to work in Hampton City Schools and help be a part of 100 percent of our schools becoming accredited without conditions. I cannot wait to see the ways that our division continues to grow."

In her role, Maxlow has organized the division's professional development program to help build staff capacity across the division. She organized efforts to create top notch banks of Essential Questions and Understandings as a feature of an initiative to grow the use of student performance-based assessments. This emphasis on deeper learning is helping to bring about a change in educating and learning all through the school division. The initiative has also led to an increase in teacher retention rates for Hampton City Schools.

The VASCD is a membership organization of more than 1,500 members statewide, including teachers, school administrators, and higher education faculty.

Isaiah Wright, M.S. 2021, contributed to this article.

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