Register for the 2022 Fall Conference!

Rooted in Truth, Reaching For Light


ICTE Fall Conference 2022

As an English teacher, whenever the concept of truth enters a classroom discussion, I’m compelled to ask follow-up questions: Whose truth is represented? Whose is left out of the story? Which perspective has the best evidence to support their truth? How do we sift through different versions of facts and opinions to get at the truth?

At the root of all of these complex questions lie two truths: 1)My students need to wrestle with these ideas to be educated humans and 2)My students are able to thoughtfully wrestle with these questions.

Unfortunately, very real challenges to our students’ complex literacy experiences blow across the national landscape, certainly gaining traction in Iowa. We teachers must reground ourselves in the truths we know in our bones about what our students need and deserve. This intense focus can take a toll; we must also intentionally look for the bright spots and honor the joys of our profession and our students.

With these goals in mind, we invite you to join us October 13-14, 2022 in Johnston, Iowa, for our ICTE Fall Conference: Rooted in Truth, Reaching for Light.

This year, Thursday will take a different shape. Rather than a traditional keynote, we will engage in an Iowa Writing Project experience, one that will ground us in writing pedagogy that has fueled so many of us in this state. Iowa Writing Project work is rooted in three truths we know all writers cling to: time, choice, and response. This heavy focus on writing pedagogy is sure to help root us in what matters most.

Cornelius Minor

Then, Friday, we will learn from Cornelius Minor, author of We Got This: Equity, Access, and the Quest to Be Who Our Students Need Us to Be. Cornelius’s work is grounded in knowing our students deeply. As he says, “My job as a teacher is not to merely teach the curriculum or even to just teach the students; it is to seek to understand my kids as completely as possible so that I can purposefully bend and remix curriculum to meet them.” When we fully see the students in front of us, we remember that they are the reason we do what we do.

Cornelius’s keynote and breakout sessions will not only ground us in what matters most, his passion and energy will uplift us and inspire us to do our best work in our classrooms and communities.

I, personally, have been devastated at the chipping away of some of the important truths in our public conversation around education. But what has disheartened me even more is the way that these actions have also chipped away at the hearts and minds of educators. More and more, I see us collectively sinking into a negative narrative about teaching that steals our joy–and let’s be honest–makes it more difficult to show up in our full humanity each day.

As we ground ourselves in the complexity of the work, together, let’s stretch: for the light of our students’ bright futures, the light of insight as we professionally grow, the light of validation that often comes from seeing our struggles reflected in the faces of our colleagues we admire.

As we look to summer, please consider ways you can share your light with our ICTE community: participating in our summer book study around We Got This, submitting a breakout proposal, and registering for the fall conference. We honor the truth of your work, as always, and know that we can continue to reach for the light–together. 


In Solidarity,

Brenna Griffin

2022 Conference Chair