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International Literacy Association Releases 30 Under 30 List
posted by: Melissa | January 08, 2019, 05:26 PM   

The International Literacy Association released it’s 30 under 30 list this week. ILA is an association dedicated to the promotion of evidence-based literacy instruction and equitable educational policies. Its 30 under 30 list recognizes rising leaders in the field of literacy.

The list includes people from 13 different countries and all aspects of education including teachers, administrators, nonprofit leaders, volunteers, and researchers. It honors “innovators, disruptors, and visionaries creating positive change in the global literacy landscape.”

The Association of American Educators is always gratified when everyday school administrators and classroom educators are recognized for being the innovators that they are. This year, the list included:

Gerald Dessus, 29, Social Justice Teacher, Mastery Charter Schools – As a middle school English language arts teacher, Dessus designed a social justice course that has been adopted by six other campuses in the charter school chain.

Elaysel Germán, 27, Literacy Manager, NIA Community Services Network – After starting a career in the classroom with Teach For America, Germán became the literacy manager for NIA Community Services Network in Brooklyn. There, she coordinates enrichment programming that helps build a culture of literacy inside schools.

Farhana Hoque, 29, ELA Teacher, Midwood High School – Hoque is a first-generation college graduate in a family of Bangladeshi immigrants. Currently, she is ELA teacher team lead for a high school in New York. There, she’s led the inclusion of culturally conscious and diverse literary texts into the curriculum.

Henry “Cody” Miller, 29, ELA Teacher, P.K. Yonge Developmental Research School – Miller is a ninth-grade English language arts teacher with a focus on how young adult literature influences students’ view of the world. He has led professional development sessions on writing instruction and developing inclusive spaces for LGBTQ students.

Maria Morfin, 29, Dean, KIPP Sol Academy – Recently named dean of KIPP Sol Academy, Morfin has made literacy a focus for the school. She organizes the school’s Literacy Night, an event that features hands-on workshops tailored to students’ needs.

Danje Morris, 29, First-Grade Teacher, Indian Valley Elementary School – Morris has shown extraordinary dedication to the literacy of her students. She works with them after school, on weekends, and even during the summer.

Matt Panozzo, 27, Seventh-Grade ELA teacher, Annunciation Orthodox School – Panozzo is dedicated to create a community of readers both in his classroom and across Texas. While a full-time teacher, he also serves as the director of the Community Involvement Committee for the state affiliate of ILA and supervises its Growing Readers program, among other efforts.

Eugene Pringle, Jr., 29, Assistant Principal, Odyssey Middle School – Pringle is a former English teacher, literacy instructional coach, and College Board SpringBoard trainer. He has always used innovative strategies to ensure that students and adults gain an understanding of literacy, and now leads his school in achieving that same goal by developing a cross-curricular approach to literacy.

Daniel Reichard, 29, Fifth-Grade Teacher, Kate Waller Barrett Elementary School – Reichard is a dynamic educator who has fostered a love of reading by hosting family nights, weekend field trips, camping trips, and innovation nights. He was named Washington Post’s 2018 Teacher of the Year.

Michelle Vallerio, 28, Assistant Principal, Randallstown Elementary School – Valerio was a child when her family emigrated from the Dominican Republic and that experience has shaped her as an educator. She is dedicated to her EL students and supports them in language acquisition, reading development, and a love of literature. She sponsored the school’s first student council, a jump rope club focused on self-confidence, and the Mighty Girls and Good Guys Book club, which engages students in reading culturally diverse texts with strong female protagonists.

Shontoria Walker, 28, Instructional Coach, Empowerment High School – Walker is a Teach Plus Senior Teaching Policy Fellow and instructional coach. She’s pursuing her doctorate in professional leadership and literacy, focusing on using culturally relevant pedagogy to influence literacy education for her black, male students.

You can see the entire list on the ILA website.

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