Dr. Dennis LittkyDennis is the co-founder and co-director of Big Picture Learning and the Met Center in Providence. He is nationally known for his extensive work in secondary education in urban, suburban, and rural settings, spanning over 40 years. As an educator, Dennis has a reputation for working up against the edge of convention and out of the box, turning tradition on its head and delivering concrete results. Presently, Dennis’s focus is to expand the Big Picture Learning design to include college-level accreditation through College Unbound, where students will have the opportunity to earn a B.A. and advanced certifications through a critically challenging, real-world based, and entrepreneurial course of study.
Dr. Katherine BolesKatherine is a senior lecturer on education and faculty director of the Learning and Teaching Master’s Degree Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She writes and teaches about school reform, teacher education, and new forms of teacher leadership. Her work advocates for increased teacher collaboration and thoughtfully developed teacher teams that will enable teachers to tackle the most difficult issues of teaching and learning. Dr. Katherine received her doctorate from Harvard, and her courses examine the latest research on school reform, teacher education, teacher teams, and new forms of teacher leadership.
Dr. Linda NathanLinda is the faculty director at the Institute for Creative Educational Leadership, Boston University. Linda Nathan was the founding headmaster of Boston Arts Academy, Boston’s first public high school for the visual and performing arts. She was also a lecturer at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and holds a Doctorate in Education from Harvard University. Dr. Nathan is a nationally and internationally recognized leader in education reform, and has lectured and written widely on topics ranging from the importance of arts education to developing schools centered on equity to developing strong structures that support teachers and leaders. Her book, The Hardest Questions Aren’t on the Test: Lessons from an Innovative Urban School,was published in 2009, and her articles have appeared in numerous publications.
ParthoPartho heads Auroveda Gnosis, an organization engaged in the field of educational research and training of teachers and corporates. His prior experience includes heading Mirambika Free Progress School in New Delhi and the Sri Aurobindo Foundation for Integral Education and Research (SAFIER), a unit of the Sri Aurobindo Society of Pondicherry. Partho has been working in the field of spiritual and Yogic education and training for more than fifteen years and is himself engaged in the practice of Vedanta. Partho spent years in exploring spiritual and mystic traditions seeking a more comprehensive and meaningful way of life. He joined the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Delhi at the age of 26 and got involved in personal research in the field of spiritual-Yogic education and practices.
Partho’s research in education and its long term impact on social and human growth led him to his involvement with social and corporate management and leadership. He has been conducting courses in personal growth and self-actualization for over ten years now. He works with schools, teachers, small individual and corporate groups on personal growth, change, excellence and self-actualization in the context of Vedanta and Integral Yoga. He runs these courses in India, Europe and the United States.
Sadanand Ward MailliardSadanand Ward is one of the founders, and has served for 35 years as the President of the Hanuman Fellowship, the Non-profit corporation that sponsors Mount Madonna Center. He serves as Vice President and member of the Executive Board of Mount Madonna School, and Vice President of the Sri Ram Foundation, a charitable trust that sponsors Sri Ram Ashram, an orphanage and school in Northern India. He is deeply committed to the learning process, and building bridges of understanding cross culturally, and between the secular and spiritual aspects of life.
An educator for over 27 years, Mailliard is deeply engaged in exploring how education can be transformed to better serve the real needs of society. He began the "Values in World Thought" curriculum in 1992. As part of this program, Mailliard co-sponsored “Project Happiness” in 2007 with the Dalai Lama Foundation, where he helped create a student-oriented curriculum based on “Ethics for the New Millennium.” This was the subject of a documentary film released in 2009.
Steven LevySteven is a school designer for Expeditionary Learning Schools, USA. He works with teachers to design curriculum and improve instructional practice, and conducts workshops in project-based learning throughout the country. Levy has taught every grade level from kindergarten through college in his 28 years of teaching. He was recognized as the 1992-93 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year, and honored by the Disney American Teacher Awards as the national Outstanding General Elementary Teacher in 1994-95. In 2001, Mr. Levy was the recipient of the Joe Oakey Award for his national impact on project-based learning. He received the John F. Kennedy Prize for the teaching of history, and his project, "Lexingtons, USA" was highlighted by the American School Board Association. Mr. Levy and his fourth grade students were designated "Conservation Heroes" by the National Park Service for their study of the effects of a local bike path on the environment and the community.
Usha MenonUsha, the co-founder of Jodo Gyan, is engaged in the task of banishing fear of mathematics from the minds of children. Jodo gyan is a not for profit social enterprise working with thousands of teachers across the country and empowering them with innovative methods to improve practice. Previously, she was a scientist with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research’s Delhi-based National Institute of Science, Technology and Development Studies. She was also a researcher with Centre for study of Multinational Corporations. She has her masters in Chemistry from IIT, Madras and Science Policy from Jawaharlal Nehru University.
Dr. Venita KaulVenita, prior to joining Ambedkar University, she was also a Senior Education Specialist at the World Bank for about ten years. She is currently the Director of the School of Education Studies and of the Center for Early Childhood Education and Development, Ambedkar University, Delhi. She has a rich experience in the area of Early Childhood Education and Primary Education and was previously the Head of Department of Preschool and Elementary Education at NCERT. Venita has a Master’s degree in Psychology from Allahabad University. Her doctorate is from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.
Vimala RamachandranVimala is the National Fellow and Professor at National University for Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA), New Delhi. She has been working on elementary education, girls’ education and women’s empowerment. She was involved in the conceptualisation of Mahila Samakhya (Education for Women’s Equality) – a pioneering Government of India programme – and served as the first National Project Director from 1988-93 and subsequently has been closely associated with initiatives for women and girls education. She established Educational Resource Unit in 1998 as a network of researchers and practitioners working on education. She worked there till December 2011, till she was invited as a National Fellow in NUEPA. She have been engaged in research on elementary and secondary education focusing on gender and equity issues, teacher status and motivation and systemic barriers to realising the equity goals of national policies and programmes for elementary education; adult literacy and continuing education and most recently have been engaged in researching educational needs of out of school youth – especially girls. She was a Rotary International scholar(1983-84) at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.
Vivian TroenVivian is the former Director of the Teacher Learning Project at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education at Brandeis University, where she supported school leaders in developing systems for supervision and evaluation to promote ongoing teacher learning for both novice and veteran teachers. As a consultant, she works with school districts and school leaders building school-wide capacity for teacher teams and Rounds groups, and addressing a wide range of issues surrounding professional learning.
Dr. Kamala MenonKamala is the ex-principal of Mirambika Free Progress School run by Sri Aurobindo Educational Society. She is one of the most eminent Social Science experts in the country. For the last 30 years, she has worked in geography education both at the National Council of Educational Research & Training (NCERT) and in The Mother's International School.
Of these 10 years were spent in the Mirambika Free Progress school in
practicing Integral education and Free Progress learning. She has created some resource material on project based learning. Her interest in alternative education and making the present system of education more meaningful continues out of Mirambika today.
Kaye JacobOver thirty years in international education, spanning three continents and six different schools, each with its own set of challenges and opportunities, Kaye is currently in her third headship, this time with The Heritage Schools, a group of progressive schools in the NCR in India. Back to mainstream education, Kaye’s vision is to integrate international best practices sustainably and accessibly to Indian kids and teachers. Her passion is creating learning communities from the inside out, empowering teachers and students to embrace diversity and seek maximum personal development and achievement in a nurturing, supportive, collaborative environment, especially in developing countries like Egypt and India. She is committed to empowering schools and has a Masters in Comparative and International Development Education from University of Minnesota, USA.
Manit JainManit, the Co-Founder of ‘I am a Teacher’, is the Founder and Director at The Heritage Schools. A radical thinker on education, he has been committed to developing a model for experiential education in large mainstream schools in the country. He has his Masters in Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Prerna ShivpuriPrerna has been in the field of education for more than 13 years and in the area of Teacher education since the last seven years. She has worked with some of the progressive schools and organizations of the country such as – Shikshantar School, The Heritage School (Gurgaon), Azim Premji Foundation and The Teacher Foundation, Bangalore. As an educator and curriculum developer, Prerna worked extensively with the Pre – Primary and Primary age groups. As a teacher educator, she has been designing and facilitating experiential training programmes for diverse groups of teachers. She has experience of working on the Pre- service, the In – service as well as Online Teacher preparation programmes.
Shaji EKShaji is the Co-Founder of Jodo Gyan and has been working relentlessly towards reform in math learning and teaching in diverse classrooms. He has led training of teachers and principals across the country.
Smriti JainSmriti, the co – founder of ‘I am a Teacher’, was the head of Middle School at The Heritage School, Gurgaon. She has worked as a teacher at Mirambika Free Progress School and has her Masters in Learning and Teaching, Instructional Leadership, from Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Sonika KaushikSonika is presently a Senior Consultant at the Early Literacy Programme (earlier known as the Reading Development Cell), NCERT, Sonika’s areas of interest include development of reading and writing in the early years. She has taught in primary schools for about seven years, including a year in a village. She was a faculty at the Department of Elementary Education at Jesus and Mary College. She has been involved in in-service programmes for school teachers, on committees for textbook development, review of textbooks, review of children's literature (Delhi government, Hindi textbooks post-NCF) and course development of teacher education programmes.
Dr. Tapaswini SahuTapaswini, Academic Director and a Faculty for I Am A Teacher leads the curriculum and mentoring programme of the PGDLT programme. She has been Lead Consultant to The World Bank, providing advisory support to Ministry of Women and Child Development in ECCE policy implementation and advise on technical aspects of developing a planning and monitoring framework and capacity building initiatives with States/UTs. She has taught children in preschool and primary years to begin with and moved on to working closely with teachers and school leaders in training, coaching and supporting them in making things happen in the classrooms. She has worked on several school reform projects with focus on curriculum planning and implementation, professional development of teachers, assessment and evaluation of children. She led the project for developing the "National Education Framework" for Bhutan: A collaborative initiative of iDiscoveri Education and Royal Education Council of Bhutan. She has her Doctorate in Educational Psychology from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi.
Vishnu KarthikVishnu is the Associate Director of The Heritage Schools and leads the new school projects. He is currently heading the Senior School in Gurgaon and his passion has motivated his team and students. He has a Masters in Mind, Brain and Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education.