Tiffany M. Martin

Defense of Degree - M.Ed. Educational Leadership

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What's behind my theme?

I chose this verse and the road as my theme because I had no plans for a Master's degree when God called me. I just had to be obedient, step out on faith and trust in His plan.


Table of Contents

1. About Me

2. Philosophy of Education

3. Diversity

4. Director Selected Competency

5. Candidate Selected Competency

6. Service Learning

7. Future Goals

8. Closing


All About Me:

I have been teaching 7th through 12th grade students the subject of Spanish for 14 years! I love secondary education especially Junior High School.
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My Family

In this picture taken Easter 2015 you see my stepson Jesse (now 16), Jeff, my husband of almost eight years and me.


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Philosophy of Education

I believe that all students can learn and that they will rise to the level of expectation if they know that their teacher cares for them. In my experience with secondary students, most of whom are teenagers, the relationship is far more important than the subject matter. The best way to earn respect is to give respect and to live the life of a servant leader. For me, teaching has always been a calling to ministry. Even though I cannot preach about my beliefs, I can live them out on a daily basis by loving my students, being honest even when it seems no one is watching and always being willing to admit when I am wrong. In my opinion, students learn more from how we live than what we teach.


The words of the apostle Paul recorded in Ephesians 4:1-2 - "I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love."

The words of Jesus recorded in Matthew 20:28 - "The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."



Breaking down stereotypes

Hispanic or not?

Building relationships with Islamic students

One of the things that has helped me the most is to know the basic rules and language of Islam.

For example:

Mosque = Masjid

Head scarf = Hijab

Forbidden = Haram

Some students from the Muslim Student Organization at our school wanted to start an inter-faith group and they asked me to sponsor it because they felt that even as a professing Christian I respected them and their faith.


John 3:16-17 says, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him."

John 13:34-35 says, "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”


Director Selected Competency

Competency 4

The principal knows how to facilitate the design and implementation of curricula and strategic plans that enhance teaching and learning; ensure alignment of curriculum, instruction, resources, and assessment; and promote the use of varied assessments to measure student performance.


Competency 4 was a bit of a challenge for me because I have never taught in a "tested" subject. Until I started my internship things like YAGs, TAPR, CNAs and STAAR tutoring programs were completely foreign.

Thankfully, my principal has really made an effort to make sure I get experience in those areas. In addition to taking the lead on our Cumulative Needs Assessment, I am also in charge of organizing the STAAR tutoring program for 6th-7th grade reading/math and 8th grade science/social studies.

Since testing is often what a new assistant principal is assigned I really appreciate any experience that I can get.


Candidate Selected Competency

Competency 5

The principal knows how to advocate, nurture, and sustain an instructional program and a campus culture that are conducive to student learning and staff professional growth.

Current Action Research Project

I am currently working on an Action Research Project that will show how effective our STAAR tutoring program was this semester. The main focus is on 8th grade ELAR because the preliminary scores will be back at the end of April. The plan is to take what we learn and make some changes in the program before we start again next year.


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Service Learning

High School Step Team Sponsor

This particular performance was at a pep rally that was the culmination of Friends Reaching Out and Giving (FROG) week. During FROG week the students raised/donated money to help send a terminally ill child and his family on a dream vacation.

Adult Sunday School Teacher

This was a big change from teaching Spanish to junior high and high school students!
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“Don't shine so others can see you. Shine so that through you, others can see Him.” - C.S. Lewis

“In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.” Titus 2:7-8


Future Goals

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This is a challenge because God has surprised me a lot over the past two years. What I have discovered so far is that my next step is definitely to become an assistant principal.

At some point in the future, I can imagine myself going to law school and eventually becoming an Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources. Through my classes, I discovered a love for law that I could have never anticipated.

When God made it clear that I would be enrolling as a graduate student at Dallas Baptist University; I had no idea what was next but I trusted Him and He provided.

Being totally honest, I really do not know what is next but I know that if I seek God first He will direct my steps. That is the plan for my future.


Jeremiah 29:11 says, "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

“I don't know what the future may hold, but I know who holds the future.” -Ralph Abernathy



From Spanish Teacher to Administrator

I started my Master's degree in Educational Leadership a confident Spanish teacher but a hesitant future administrator. I knew that God had called me to step out of my comfort zone; however I was unsure that I would have the ability to be successful.

Thanks to the encouragement of Dr. Tribble, my advisor, as well as the patience and prayers of my other professors, I have developed the knowledge and confidence that I needed to become a good leader. I also would like to thank Dallas Baptist University for providing the faith based education that has played a crucial role in sharpening my skills as a servant leader.


"Trust in You," by Lauren Daigle, has been my theme song during my time at DBU. If we have time I would like to share it with you.
Lauren Daigle - Trust In You

A few lines that I really want to share:

Your ways are always higher
Your plans are always good
There’s not a place I’ll go,

You’ve not already stood.

When You don’t move the mountains I’m needing You to move
When You don’t part the waters I wish I could walk through

When You don’t give the answers as I cry out to You

I will trust in you.