I Am A Rural Teacher

Rural Schools Collaborative

Welcome to the I Am a Rural Teacher Podcast, a project of the Rural Schools Collaborative. We began with Julia Levine in 2020 to explore what it means to be a rural teacher from six different perspectives around the country. Now, we are continuing the project with other RSC staff members. read less
Matt Jaeger - Bellevue, IA
Matt Jaeger - Bellevue, IA
Special thanks to Jason Neises, our Iowa Hub contact at Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque, for connecting us with Bellevue Schools, and to Tom Meyer, superintendent of Bellevue School District, for partnering with Rural Schools Collaborative on this story. Read more about Bellevue Schools and CFGD here. When faced with adversity, rural schools often turn to innovation as a way of not just rising above their challenges, but of defining an even higher path forward. Our Iowa Hub partners at the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque have often worked with inspired schools doing this kind of transformational work, such as the Bellevue School District in Bellevue, Iowa. Wanting to see their work first-hand, the Rural Schools Collaborative team traveled to Bellevue and interviewed Matt Jaeger and his students. A high school social studies teacher and coach, Matt is the co-leader of the district’s innovative, student-led project-based learning site: Bellevue BIG. He shares in this episode how teachers eager to break the traditional mold find these student-led initiatives just as fulfilling and energizing for themselves as they do for students. Thank you for listening to this episode of the I Am A Rural Teacher Podcast. We’d like to thank our partners at the National Rural Education Association and the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque for collaborating with us on this episode. The I Am a Rural Teacher campaign is made possible by a grant from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.