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Michael Page

Resident Year Experience

Programming / April 16, 2024
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This blog has been adapted from an interview with Michael Page, cohort 8 teacher resident at the Educator Academy and teacher at Eugene Ware Elementary School. A staff formatted this to fit a blog, making edits solely for legibility purposes.

Michael Pages’s Journey into Education

The Educator Academy is a place of opportunity for aspiring educators. Through its teacher residency program, individuals like Michael Page find a pathway to fulfill their lifelong passion for teaching while impacting students’ lives in Kansas City, KS. Michael’s journey into education began when he was just a kid. Despite a 27-year career in the private sector, his calling to the classroom remained fueled by the experiences of his teachers, who nurtured accountability, care, and cultural understanding.

“I have always wanted to be a teacher since the 8th grade!” he recalls with unwavering determination. We previously interviewed Michael about his education journey and what being a career changer looked like for him at the Educator Academy. 

Today, Michael teaches in Kansas City, KS, at Eugene Ware Elementary School. Here, Michael has shown his passion and commitment to the students inside his classroom and to education at KCK. Every day, Michael creates a safe environment for his students through his ability to build positive relationships, encourage their journey in education, and strengthen their desire to learn. Michael says he wanted to join The EA because his pathway to becoming a teacher was a decision rooted in purpose and reflection. “I wanted something purpose-driven,” Michael shares. 

Becoming a teacher at the Educator Academy provides a comprehensive and immersive experience designed to prepare aspiring educators to stay in the classroom for the long term. The first year of residency is when individuals become certified teachers of record. The program emphasizes hands-on learning through classroom experience alongside mentor teachers, supplemented by rigorous coursework. One-on-one instructional coaching from EA staff ensures personalized support and professional development, while service through AmeriCorps provides a meaningful avenue for community engagement.

During his residency year, one day and one evening each week are dedicated to EA coursework. Mondays are spent with our teacher residents at the seminar, and then on Wednesday evenings, participants have methods where they focus on their content areas. At The EA, coursework is structured in a way that equips residents with essential instructional skills and grounds them in foundational principles of education. The remaining four days of the school week are spent in the classroom, where residents work closely with their mentor teachers, serving students and applying their learning in real time.

Michael Page on Being a Black Male Teacher in Kansas

At the core of The Educator Academy’s mission and vision lies a commitment to equity, excellence, and empowerment. The EA believes we work towards a future where every classroom is led by compassionate, highly effective, culturally and emotionally responsive educators; partnering with school systems, they aspire towards the day where all students are represented and have access to a high-quality education.

As a Black male educator, Michael’s presence in the classroom embodies representation and empowerment, enriching the educational experience for all students. His journey is a testament to the unwavering pursuit of purpose and the boundless potential within each educator to ignite change and inspire future generations. He says, “My 5th-grade teacher and one of my other teachers, he was a unicorn because he looked like me. He was a male African American. They held us accountable, cared for, and culturally understood us, and I looked at them and thought I could do that.”

We know we need more male Black teachers. In 2023, the National Teacher and Principal Survey revealed a stark reality: just 1.3% of public school teachers were Black men in the 2020-21 school year. This underscores the critical need for initiatives like The Educator Academy and organizations such as BLOC, which provide mentorship and support for men of color in education. The EA believes that our need for more Black Male teachers should be discussed as we continue to navigate education.

Why Michael Page Feels DEI is Important in Education 

Despite the current climate and education narrative in the United States, areas are still committed to diversity and inclusion. These include resources such as the Department of Education and its commitment to English Language Learners. According to them, English learners (ELs) are a growing part of the K–12 student population. Between the 2009–10 and 2014–15 school years, the percentage of EL students increased in more than half of the states, with increases of over 40 percent in five states.

For Michael, the most rewarding educational experiences stem from the seemingly small yet profound moments of connection and growth. Whether building trust with English Language Learners or witnessing the “little lightbulbs” of understanding illuminate in students’ minds, each moment reaffirms his passion and dedication to the transformative power of education.

Michael Page’s presence in the classroom embodies representation and empowerment, enriching the educational experience for all students. His journey is a testament to his pursuit of purpose and the potential to ignite change and inspire future generations.

The Kansas City Landscape is dynamic, ever-evolving, and changing. The Educator Academy is a catalyst for innovation, equity, and excellence. Through its many programs, it continues cultivating a new generation of educators dedicated to the equity of all students.

Ready to embark on your journey to teacher certification in Kansas? 

Explore The Educator Academy’s residency program today and take the first step towards making a difference in the lives of students and communities. To learn more, check out our teacher residency page and see if this program is for you.