Lately, the exciting events surrounding The Innovation School has filled me with hope and joy. We have signed on three amazing teachers to begin our journey this fall. It was a difficult choice to make considering all the qualified and talented educators that applied and were interviewed, however, these three top applicants are so excited about this endeavor and to have a chance to change the paradigm surrounding education.
Sara Wussow will be leading our youngest class at The Innovation School this fall. Sara believes in the beautiful things children are capable of and is excited bring out the best in each of her students. Sara enjoys spending time with her husband and 2 sons in the outdoors, stretching their bodies and minds while hiking, biking, or climbing. Sara is currently spending her summer in Montana but will return in August to aid in the final touches on the space. Sara has taught at a Reggio-inspired preschool program and has a great handle on designing the classroom as "the third teacher". I am excited to work with Sara for several reasons. I can tell that she values relationships and builds them easily with others. She seems to enjoy collaboration and has many great ideas to share. Sara has an incredible amount of patience and believes in the goodness of children. I am ecstatic she has agreed to join us this fall!
Kaylee Dahl will be leading our middle class. These may include students in grades 1-4, depending on what ages of students apply. Kaylee sees unlimited potential in children and enjoys working with them to bring this potential to the forefront. She enjoys spending time with her new husband, who is teaching her a new skill in the form of weightlifting. Kaylee also likes singing and playing the piano... she spent some time working with local musicians and recording and thoroughly enjoyed it. A few years ago, Kaylee took a full time position at a local church and revolutionized their children's program. Designing and implementing this program allowed her to experience true creative energy and fanned her passion for guiding and leading children as they walk through life. I am delighted to be working with Kaylee. She has an incredibly sensitive heart and excels at listening and observing. She has a strong desire to see a change in education and has been looking for this type of school since graduating with her education degree. I can see how this passion for change, combined with her spark, drive, and love for children will be an amazing combination for this fall!
Kelsy Power will be leading our oldest class at The Innovation School. Kelsy values her relationships with her students above all else and strives to help them develop and build their own relationships. She enjoys traveling and spending time with her friends, family, her dog, and especially her new fiance. She is very active and enjoys being outdoors including biking and hiking. Kelsy has taught at a local private school for 5 years. After departmentalizing subjects, Kelsy was able to teach math to all the students in upper elementary. Working closely with the science teacher (her mom!) she was able to create many cross-learning STEM projects and found a passion for project based and student-led learning. I am thrilled to be working with Kelsy. She has a zest for life and enjoys experiencing new things and sharing new ideas. She sees children as individuals and has a strong desire to help them find their places in the world, which ties perfectly with our mission. Kelsy has a lot of energy and is fun to be around, which will help inspire our oldest students and ignite an excitement for lifetime learning this fall!
It is humbling to have found these beautiful women to embark on this journey with me. Each of them is excited about this venture and are willing to be a part of this "start up" type environment. When I put my work out there on April 25th for everyone to see, it felt like such a scary thing. But I truly felt compelled, so I surged forward. And the educators who have supported me and supported this idea has been overwhelming. Finding these three teachers among the many applications I received has reaffirmed that the "scary thing" is worth it. I feel buoyed up by these women and supported on a whole new level. The excitement of this new independent school continues to build and these three educators give us another level of credibility.
Thank you Sara, Kaylee, and Kelsy. The hard work of this adventure will seem like play with the three of you on board. I can't wait to see what we accomplish together!