State and City of Residence:
New Haven, CT
What brought you to work in education?
When I was in high school I had a school counselor tell me that I was not college material. I was an honor student in high school and I did not play sports. If I had listened I might not have gone to college. I wanted students of color to have an advocate for them to achieve their fullest potential and shield them from educators who do not believe ALL students can achieve. I am a strong advocate for at-risk students and work daily to ensure that all students, especially students of color receive a high quality education.
Tell us about something that you have done in education that you feel has made or will make a big difference for your community.
I have been appointed to the city of New Haven's Blue Ribbon Reading Commission. The commission includes six committees and is comprised of educators and faculty members from local schools and colleges, librarians, physicians and other community stakeholders who specialize in or have an interest in helping promote literacy. The commission is a joint city of New Haven and Board of Education initiative to explore, assess and identify best practices to help improve reading skills and literacy proficiency across the district. The commission also includes a community engagement component focusing on family outreach.
What’s your favorite part about being an America Achieves Fellow?
Attending the NBC Education Nation Summit, a national conference held in New York City, to discuss the state of education in America to meet and advise policy makers, public officials and educational leaders on educational policy and practice. Taking part in the Fellowship Program helped equip me to take an active part in decision-making at the local level and provide leadership to build high quality educational systems in our great city. The best part is being around great educators that are part of the America Achieves Fellowship!
If you could change just one thing about our current education system, what would it be?
Decrease the amount of assessments! In my opinion, we should have assessments that educators can use to drive instruction and not administer assessments for compliance.
What is your biggest aspiration?
To be the policymaker in my school district.
If a song played every time you walked into a room, what would that song be?
Sam Cooke. A Change is Gonna Come.
What’s the best thing a student ever said to you?
I love you Mr. Worthy!
What’s your dream vacation?
Playing golf in Hawaii
What is one fun fact that most people don’t know about you?
I never wanted to be principal!
What is your other favorite thing to do (besides education, or course!)?
Watch college football alone!
What is one book every educator must read?
Schools that Change: Evidence-Based Improvement and effective Change Leadership by Lew Smith