Category: Teachers & Leaders

When the numbers didn’t add up, this Denver principal came up with her own solutions to the problem

When Jessica Valsechi first arrived to teach in Denver, she saw one word problem written on the face of every kindergartner who entered her classroom: If you have ten kindergartners, and five of them graduate high school, how many go on to earn a college degree? When Valsechi found that the answer was one, she spent two years helping University…

Lifting as she climbs. By opening her own school, families wouldn’t be faced with the same choice her parents were forced to make for her

Growing up in Northwest Houston, Lindsey Lorehn had access to strong public schools. Her parents wanted a school where they felt welcome, where their voices could be heard and where they could actively contribute to Lorehn’s education. Not unlike most parents, they wanted a school that had a reputation for academic excellence. With degrees from Xavier, Tulane and even med…

Coffee Break: Colorado Ed Reformer Mike Johnston on DeVos, DACA and His Future in the Democratic Party

By Katelyn Silva Mike Johnston was a Teach For America corps member in the Mississippi Delta, a principal for six years in Colorado, and served as a senior education advisor to President Obama. He just wrapped his tenure in the Colorado State Senate where he fought for pivotal education changes, including improved identification of students with learning disabilities, the provision of…

This Fifth-Grade Teacher Has Some Questions for Betsy DeVos

By Caroline Corcoran Despite my middling efforts, I was not invited to question Betsy DeVos ahead of her confirmation hearing as secretary of education—it certainly would have been nice to be invited. Alas, the hearing was on a school day, so even if I had been invited I would have had to say no. As a fifth-grade teacher in an urban…

A Denver Teacher’s Call for ‘More Urgent Path Forward’ on Improving Schools

The Denver Board of Education last month voted to phase out or close three elementary schools for poor performance and declining enrollment. In the wake of that tough decision, Denver teacher Kathleen Anderson wrote this piece about the importance of strong school accountability. By Kathleen Anderson Students and families in Southwest Denver have been underserved for nearly 20 years. Kepner Middle…