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2018 Introductory Courage to Teach Retreat

Friday, July 6, 2018 - Sunday, July 8, 2018

Santa Sabina Center - San Rafael, CA

July 6-8, 2018
Fri. 6 PM to Sun. 1 PM

Santa Sabina Center
Dominican University
San Rafael, California

ONLY $300
thanks to generous support


Register by June 15


In a time when stress and pressure on elementary, middle and high school teachers in public, private and charter schools continues to rise because of internal and external demands, Courage to Teach® provides educators an opportunity for rest, renewal, and re-engagement with their identity and integrity as teachers.

Margaret Golden, a professor in Dominican’s School of Education and Counseling Psychology, directs Courage to Teach, the only retreat of its kind in Northern California which focuses on renewing the inner lives of professionals in education.

“When we provide teachers with opportunities for becoming more mindful about their own practice, amazing things can occur,” Golden says. “Through participation in a Circle of Trust®, personal transformation can lead to the transformation of schools and institutions.”

What to Expect

This introductory Courage to Teach® retreat offers educators opportunities to reflect on the inner dimension of teaching and leading and explore “the heart of a teacher.” At the retreat, 25-30 participants gather to engage in honest self-reflection and to explore questions about purpose, values, and commitment to their challenging work. In doing so, they increase their capacity to listen, to stay true to their mission, and to engage with the work of teaching wholeheartedly.

academy2013-pairIn large group, small group, and solitary settings, participants will make use of stories from their own journeys, reflections on classroom practice, and insights from poets, story-tellers, and diverse wisdom traditions. They are invited to speak earnestly about their lives and work, and to listen and respond to each other—and to themselves—with encouragement and compassion.

Click to learn more about the Circle of Trust approach, developed by Parker J. Palmer and the Center for Courage & Renewal.

Kelly Camak is helping teachers cultivate confidence.

“Many teachers view the program as an antidote to the increasingly narrow focus on standardized testing in schools,” Golden says. “That’s compelling for teachers right now.”

On top of that, Courage to Teach helps teachers deal with the burnout and stress brought on internally by cutbacks and looming teacher layoffs, increased class sizes, decreased learning time, student behavioral issues and fewer counselors in addition to external pressure caused by increased poverty, high unemployment and rising expectations among parents.

"quote-LThe retreats provided guided opportunities and time to be able to reflect deeply on the guiding principles and values for myself as an educator, when neither the time nor context is as available in the school or home settings.”

"quote-LI feel a clearer sense of satisfaction and purpose. Each activity helped me to know myself better. It cleared the pathway to be more engaged with students and colleagues.”

"quote-LI learned to allow heart into everything I do. To embrace each of my students’ perspectives, lives, hopes, and interests.”

The Benefits

This unique professional development series can help you develop:

  • A stronger sense of purpose, renewed commitment & increased satisfaction with your work.
  • A heightened sense of personal and professional renewal, readiness to return to work refreshed and energized.
  • An increased capacity to be fully present in your work by providing a reprieve from the hectic bustle of teaching.
  • A deepened capacity to tune in to the individual needs and gifts of students and colleagues.
  • Expanded capacity to be resilient and purposeful in your work as an educator.

Experiences in these supportive circles have been effective in helping teachers create safer spaces and trusting relationships in their schools, with their students and colleagues, and within their communities. Past participants consistently rate the experience very highly.

Also check out these important findings on other key benefits, drawn from research and evaluation on Courage to Teach®.

About Our Venue

This retreat will be held at the lovely Santa Sabina Center adjacent to the Dominican campus in San Rafael, California. Santa Sabina Center, 25 Magnolia Avenue, San Rafael, CA 94901
(415) 457-7727  |

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Meet Your Facilitators

Margaret Golden, Ed.Dmargaret-golden-2014 directs the Courage to Teach program at Dominican where she is a Professor in the Department of Education. Her passions include educational equity and the study of social/emotional development and mindfulness in children and adults. She lives in Berkeley, California with her partner, David.

Lydia Poole, M.Ed., is an educator at a K-8 school in Portland, Oregon. She is committed to educational equity and helping teachers sustain their human spirit as they work with students who have to navigate insurmountable odds while also attending school. She lives in the Portland area with her four beautiful children.

Registration and Details
For full details, go to Dominican’s website.

FEES: $300 includes single accommodations and all meals. *This reduced price is made available to educators by a generous grant from the Kalliopeia Foundation.

REGISTRATION: To register, download the Courage to Teach Registration Form and follow the instructions.

DEADLINE: Please register no later than June 15, 2018.

Upon registration and deposit, participants will receive an email with detailed information, including directions and preparatory materials.

Cancellation Policy: Cancellations are subject to a $300 administration fee, and must be made 4 weeks prior to the first retreat date to receive any refund.

Questions about Courage to Teach?

Margaret Golden, Ed.D.

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