Courage To Teach Series

“Every profession that attracts people for “reasons of the heart” is a profession in which people and the work they do suffer from losing heart. Like teachers, these people are asking, “How can we take heart again so that we can give heart to others?”—which is why they undertook their work in the first place.”

― Parker J. Palmer, The Courage to Teach: Exploring the Inner Landscape of a Teacher’s Life

In a time when teachers, support staff, and administrators are under growing demands and pressure, Courage to Teach® provides educators with an opportunity to reconnect with the reasons of the heart that lead us to become a teacher in the first place. Through connection with other teachers and most importantly our own inner teacher, we can regain the courage to teach in difficult times. The program, originally conceived by author and educator Parker J. Palmer, offers educators of all kinds an opportunity to reflect on the inner dimensions of teaching and leading with courage in today’s world.

Early-Bird (Before Dec. 15)


Re-Inspiring the Heart of a Teacher

Event Details

Join this 5 session Circle of Trust ® series for a monthly morning gathering that holds space for your own reflection, renewal and rejuvenation. Together we will seek to understand, honor, and celebrate brave conversations, deep listening, and reconnection with our love of teaching in community with one another. Teachers, educators, and administrators from all levels and areas of education are welcome, regardless of previous Circle of Trust experience.

What to expect:

“If we want to grow as teachers -- we must do something alien to academic culture: we must talk to each other about our inner lives -- risky stuff in a profession that fears the personal and seeks safety in the technical, the distant, the abstract.”

― Parker J. Palmer, The Courage to Teach: Exploring the Inner Landscape of a Teacher’s Life

Unlike many professional development opportunities that use lectures to distill information from an expert, the Circle of Trust ® process uses time-tested practices that support the development of interpersonal relationships through structured sharing and time for individual reflection. Participants will learn and practice the skills of deep listening and open questions that support healthy relationships with students, colleagues, and parents/guardians. Our time together will include the use of poetry, imagery, and other evocative prompts to invite opportunities for personal reflection, and space for sharing in small and large groups.

This workshop welcomes educators and administrators from all backgrounds and beliefs, all races, ethnicities, genders, sexualities, ages, religions, abilities, identities, and experience. 


Paula Cornell is an enthusiastic idea generator and curious question asker. She holds a Master of Social Work from Dalhousie University and previously worked in Summer Camps, Group Homes, and for 10 years with people experiencing homelessness in Edmonton. Paula is an instructor and the Chair of the Child and Youth Care Diploma program at NorQuest College, and has taught Social Work at The King’s University and MacEwan University. Paula has a deep appreciation for the interconnectedness of humanity and is perpetually curious about what it means to live a meaningful life.

Witty Sandle has over 30 years of experience working with in both high school and post-secondary education. She has a professional qualification in careers guidance and Masters in Spiritual Formation at Portland Seminary with a certificate in Spiritual Direction. Witty has a passion for people and describes her vocation as being someone called to be an attentive presence by creating safe spaces where others can discover all they are called to be and do. Witty leads and directs the work of the Center for Career and Calling and offers vocational discernment services at The King’s University in Edmonton, AB.

Dates and Times:

1 Saturday morning gathering per month from January - May 2023 from 9:00 am - Noon at The Star of the North Retreat Centre in St. Albert, AB.

Registrants on a first come basis. A minimum of 10 participants is needed for the series to run.


  • Early-Bird (before December 15): $325
  • Regular (after December 15): $375

If registration costs are an issue, please contact us at 




Saturday January 28, 20239:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday February 18, 20239:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday March 25, 20239:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday April 22, 20239:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday May 27, 20239:00 am - 12:00 pm

Early-Bird (Before Dec. 15)




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