2022 Symposia Series: United By Purpose

The logo reads "United by purpose" and includes abstract line art representing people linked arm-in-arm.

At the Charles Butt Foundation, we believe every child, in every community, deserves access to a high-quality public school so they can pursue and reach their full potential. This requires a strong principal at the helm of every school, and an effective teacher in every classroom.

Our statewide programs were developed with this vision in mind. Our Raising School Leaders program invests in leadership development training for campus and district leaders. The Charles Butt Scholarship for Aspiring teachers – one leg of our Raising Texas Teachers program – provides financial and professional support to aspiring Texas teachers. 

These programs extend well beyond one-time investments. All current and former grantees are invited to join an ongoing learning community we call our Leadership Network and Scholar Network, respectively. These networks exist to support practitioners in collaborative continuous learning, professional networking and advancement, and mutual support.

Through this alumni engagement work, we host two annual Symposia to bring these statewide communities of educators together for shared learning. 

This year will mark our 14th annual Leadership Symposium and 4th annual Scholar Symposium. The 2022 Leadership Symposium, originally scheduled for mid-February, was postponed to October 31-November 2, out of concern for statewide school staffing shortages this spring. The 2022 Scholar Symposium takes place in San Antonio from June 10-12

Each year, we develop a unique theme for the pair of events with consideration of what’s on educators’ hearts and minds. Past themes included:

This is Where We Shine (2021) 

Texans for All (2020)

Raise Your Voice (2019)

Unstoppable: 1000 Leaders, 10 Years, 1 Purpose (2018)

This year’s theme is United by Purpose. We chose this theme for a handful of reasons:

1). The expansion and restructuring of our organization

In January, the Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation combined with, and became, the Charles Butt Foundation, rightly placing Charles’ generous philanthropy in education under his named organization. Raise Your Hand Texas will continue, as always, as the exemplary policy and advocacy organization supporting the 5.5 million school children in Texas. 

Our shared work and deep partnership continued throughout restructuring and will continue going forward. As sister organizations, we remain united in our efforts and in our complementary missions.

2). A call to stand together as a network and coalition of public education advocates

Through a third pandemic school year, a turbulent political climate, and growing staffing shortages, educators continue leading their communities with grace, determination, and courage. 

Despite momentous challenges ahead for public education, the Charles Butt Foundation, Raise Your Hand Texas, and our Leadership and Scholar Networks stand together as a learning community, a support system, and a coalition of public education advocates. We will continue to champion and support educators, as they champion and support Texas students. 

As a Charles Butt Foundation network, we are united in an unwavering mission to build an equitable and prosperous future for all students, especially our students of color and those from low-income families.

3). Rerooting in our connections with one another 

In these challenging times, our connections with one another give us strength. Our Leadership and Scholar Alumni have countless stories of how they’ve shown up for one another over the years. This year’s symposia will help our networks reflect on these moments of connection and celebrate the deep roots that have been built through this network. 

Together, as a united front, we will weather these storms and build a stronger and more equitable public education system and stronger communities across Texas.