Mineral County math teachers Katie Capaldi, Amy Cowgill chosen for M3T program

Staff Writer
Mineral Daily News-Tribune
Mineral Daily News-Tribune

KEYSER – Mineral County Schools is pleased to announce that Katie Capaldi and Amy Cowgill, mathematics teachers at Keyser High School and Frankfort High School, respectively, have been selected as “Mountaineer Mathematics Master Teachers (M3T) Noyce Fellows.”

The program is part of a $3 million grant to West Virginia University (WVU) from the National Science Foundation’s Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program, supported by additional grants from the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE).

Capaldi and Cowgill are two of only 19 M3T Noyce Fellows in the first cohort participating in the project, representing 17 counties across West Virginia.

“I am beyond honored to be able to continue my involvement in this program by being part of M3T’s first official cohort of Noyce Fellows,” said Capaldi. “The M3T program is an exceptional way to open doors between mathematics classrooms so that mathematics teachers can learn from themselves and others in order to work toward providing the best possible instruction for West Virginia students.”

“It’s an honor to be selected for participation in this program. I am looking forward to improving what I do in my classroom based on the work I do with M3T,” said Cowgill.

The M3T project builds on previous efforts to support secondary mathematics teacher leadership and instructional improvement across West Virginia, which started in Pocahontas County about a decade ago. Over the next five years, fellows will work with M3T project leads Dr. Matthew Campbell, assistant professor of mathematics education at WVU, and Joanna Burt-Kinderman, instructional coach for Pocahontas County Schools, who was recognized in 2019 by Education Week as a “Leader to Learn From,” as well as a team of other mathematics and mathematics education faculty at WVU.

“We have a unique and powerful opportunity to work with these outstanding mathematics teachers across West Virginia over the next five years,” said Campbell. “Our state’s teachers should be at the center of improving mathematics teaching and learning and, with this cohort of fellows, we will work to understand how to make that possible.”

M3T Noyce Fellows must continue to serve in their role as a middle or high school mathematics teacher as part of their commitment to the program. Fellows will work as a network to identify and solve specific problems in their own classrooms and share that learning. In time, they will also lead similar improvement efforts with teachers in their local school or district context. By the end of the project, fellows will be supported to mentor other emerging teacher leaders across the state.

“Math teachers’ problems, solutions and perspectives are too often locked in their classrooms, where no one can learn from or with them,” said Burt-Kinderman. “M3T fellows will link problems of teaching and learning to potential solutions across the state and nation and, as we learn to improve, we are excited for teachers across the state to learn with us.”

Since they began their work with the project this fall, fellows have met regularly to build their improvement network, attended national conferences virtually, and collaborated with the WVDE on the development of materials for educators across the state. In the spring, fellows will begin a process of developing, testing, and refining possible solutions to problems they have identified in their mathematics classrooms.

“We are delighted to have Ms. Capaldi representing Keyser High School on the M3T project. Ms. Capaldi is deeply committed to her students and to her profession, and she is a natural leader.  Her enthusiasm is contagious, and we are confident that she will have a huge impact on West Virginia students and teachers from her participation in the M3T program,” said Lois Spencer, Keyser High School principal.

"We are thrilled to have Mrs. Cowgill representing Frankfort High School on the M3T project. Her consistent success as a passionate, hard-working, and innovative math teacher makes her an ideal fit for a leadership position. Teachers and students alike across the state of West Virginia will undoubtedly benefit from the knowledge she brings to the M3T project,” said Orie Pancione, Frankfort High School principal.

“We are extremely proud to have Amy Cowgill and Katie Capaldi recognized as two of the state’s best math teachers and thank them for representing Mineral County Schools as a part of the M3T program.  With their excellent teacher-leadership and support from WVU and WVDE, we will continue our path towards ongoing improvement in math teaching and learning in Mineral County,” said Troy Ravenscroft, Mineral County Schools superintendent.

The M3T program will be accepting applications for a second cohort of fellows in Spring 2021, with a goal to support at least 40 fellows total.

Katie Capaldi