Advisory Committee

The Advisory Committee of the Educators’ Cooperative consists of CoOp members who teach in schools and classrooms all over Nashville and Middle Tennessee. They share a vision for the power and potential of the Cooperative and ensure its sustainable growth and improvement. Their work and commitment are essential to the operations and goals of the Cooperative.

Joel Bezaire


Joel Headhost

I teach 7th grade Pre-Algebra at the University School of Nashville. I have presented at the Tennessee Math Teachers Association, International Society for Technology in Education, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, and Twitter Math Camp conferences and have been published by Christianity Today, the NCTM, and Fathom Mag. You can learn more about my work, publications, and appearances on my website, Pre-Algebra OneI am a member of EdCo Cohort 1 and and love collaborating with like minded teachers on behalf of all of Nashville’s students. Contact me via Twitter @joelbezaire or email at

Sydney Britt

My name is Sydney Britt; I am a teacher, speaker, and activist from Fayetteville, Georgia. I currently teach English at McMurray Middle School here in Nashville, TN. I graduated from Agnes Scott College with a degree in Music and Education. After moving to Nashville, I achieved a Masters of Arts in Teaching degree from Belmont University while simultaneously teaching 3rd grade as a resident of their year-long Metro Nashville Urban Teachers Residency program (MNUTR). I was a keynote speaker at Tennessee State University’s 2018 ACES Conference, and I currently enjoy the opportunities I have as a guest lecturer at Belmont University. Additionally, I am privileged to be a member of The Educators’ Cooperative as a Cohort 5 initiate. I have a deeply vested interest in the autonomy and boldness that education provides. Empowering young people with the tools necessary to advocate for themselves and for others drives both my teaching practice and my heart. For me, The Educator’s Cooperative is a space to engage fully with the educational challenges of our times. This alliance of excellent servant-leaders challenges me, and encourages me to teach bravely.

Colleen Cummings

Grants and Development

C. Cummings EdCo Photo

I came to the classroom by way of educational research and policy, where I investigated service-learning and civic education practices. I am currently in my sixth year of teaching in Nashville charter schools, with five of those years in first grade and one year in kindergarten.  I have been fortunate enough to be a founding educator at Explore! Community School, a project-based learning charter school in east Nashville, where I readily connect to my background in service-learning and civic engagement. 

 As an educator, I believe firmly that the primary goal of our institution is to prepare students to ask questions of, participate in, and improve their communities.  As such, I am grateful for the Educators’ Cooperative, as it gives me the opportunity to do the same of mine.  The un-siloing of educational sectors is imperative for continued growth, especially in a city as large as Nashville, and I appreciate the ability of EdCo to construct a space where educators can be vulnerable in sharing challenges while learning alongside each other.  I look forward to a day when the entire education system functions like EdCo, where individuals operate from a sense of common purpose rather than an emphasis on differences.    

Jenna Davis

I am a 3rd grade teacher at Glenview Elementary in Nashville, Tennessee. My educational career started overseas in Kyiv, Ukraine which fostered a love for English language learners. For the past thirteen years, I have taught third and fourth grade, obtained a Master’s degree in ESL, and earned administration certification through Lipscomb University. I have served in different capacities at the school and district level throughout the years by being a team leader, supervising practicum students and student teachers, developing the district scope and sequence for elementary math and facilitating district level PD for the EL office. 

I am passionate about using my voice for my students as I was a member of the MNPS Teacher Leadership Institute, as well as an inaugural member of the NPEF Teacher Cabinet. I also completed the TN Educator Fellowship with SCORE where I learned how to advocate on behalf of my students and their families at both the school and state level.  I love learning from other teachers and am a cohort 3 member of the Educators’ Cooperative.  I always leave our time together recharged and energized due to our shared commitment to all students in Nashville.  I can be reached at

Alecia Ford

My name is Alecia Ford, and I have been fortunate to have experienced a variety of diverse schools as a parent and teacher. Originally, I set out to be a scientist! I did become a food scientist and worked at Pillsbury for 8 years. While there, I volunteered in a 4th grade classroom with a program called KaPOW (Kids and the Power of Work), which makes explicit connections between what we do at school and the world outside the classroom. I loved sharing learning with others both at school and also in my training role in the lab at work, so I resigned and enrolled at Peabody, graduating with an M.Ed. in elementary ed.

Since then, I’ve taught at Jere Baxter, Meigs, East Literature and J. T. Moore Middle Schools, in that order. In between, my own children have attended the Canadian International School of Singapore, a neighborhood public school in Canada (truly neighborhood – no buses, we all walked or biked), and as of this year, both have graduated from Hillsboro High School and earned their IB Diplomas.

As an educator and a parent, I think this wide variety of schooling experiences and perspectives has helped me to be an open-minded and compassionate teacher, while my interest in science keeps me pointed at the latest research and what works. I have served in several leadership positions in my school over the years and am ready to reach out beyond my school. I’ve served on district level math committees as well as on the Nashville Public Education Foundation (NPEF) Teacher Cabinet last year. I am looking forward to continuing to learn and grow with other Nashville teacher leaders in the Educators’ Cooperative.


Jacqueline Gregory

Data and Trends

I teach PreK through 4th grade students as the Librarian at Glenview Elementary. I teach for many reasons: to share my love of learning, to guide children to believe in themselves, and to encourage them to help make the world a better place.  

The best way to reach me is through email at either or

Lemuel Holifield

I come to Nashville by way of Johnson City, Tennessee, I am a happily married father of four children. I enjoy regularly mentoring and advising former and current students with an emphasis on future career and life goals. My life’s main charter is to empower students to successfully navigate through life as well-rounded individuals with a strong sense of cultural identity. I constantly strive to be the trusted authority figure who guides others through life. I teach as an extension of living life itself. In August 2020 I became a founding member of Templeton Academy in Nashville. I currently hold the title of STEM department lead and STEM teacher,  this is my 10th year in education.  The Educators Cooperative is the ideal environment for any educator who is seeking growth. EdCo is an incubator for great educators and great ideas!

Mike Mitchell

Community Connections and Collaboration

I serve as the Kids on Stage Art Director for Mount Pleasant Schools in historically rural Mount Pleasant, TN. I work with all Dance, Music, Theatre, Visual Art, Audio/Video production students and teachers across all three schools and offer STEAM integration support and resources to ALL 100 teachers across the only TSIN/TDOE certified model status STEM school clusters in TN. I can be reached at or .

Amy Nystrand

Program Director

I am currently in my fifth year teaching 4th grade at Cole Elementary School in MNPS. I believe that education has the power to improve the lives of students from all different backgrounds, which starts by connecting with students on a personal level. In order to best prepare students for the future world they will face, I believe it’s imperative to teach the whole child academically, socially, and emotionally, so I strive to create strong classroom community. I teach because I love learning and want to pass my love for learning on to future generations. The Educator’s Cooperative allows me to connect with other teachers across the city, where we can discuss best practices, identify common issues, and generate working solutions. As a lifelong learner, EdCo provides the space and opportunity to continue to push my thinking and further develop my skills as an educator. It also provides for community, reflection, and a constant source of rejuvenation necessary to continue to work at optimum levels! I can be reached at

Greg O’Loughlin


2018 school pic

Now in my 11th year of teaching, I entered the classroom with the inaugural class of the New Teacher Project, Nashville Teaching Fellows. I taught 4th grade at Paragon Mills Elementary School for 3 years before moving to University School of Nashville to teach 3rd grade and then 6th grade English. I am currently teaching 9th and 10th grade Foundations at Templeton Academy.

My dream of a cooperative for teachers, by teachers became a reality in the summer of 2016 with the first cohort of the Educators’ Cooperative. I plan to grow the Cooperative over the next few years in an effort to bring Nashville’s extraordinary teachers together to collaborate, share, and learn together, regardless of the type of school in which the teach. I can be reached at

Lindsay Roe

I’m a proud teacher of newcomer English language learners at LEAD Cameron, a zoned charter school in Nashville. I love my work because of the students I teach and the community we create together. As a reading and language teacher, my goals are to get to know my students, celebrate their assets, meet them where they are, and support them in developing their language and literacy skills. I think instruction should always be meaningful and informed by the needs and interests of the current group of students sitting in the classroom. This requires a reflective practice that is always striving for new ideas and constructive feedback. Participating in the Educators’ Cooperative has connected me with phenomenal teachers throughout Nashville who have helped me to bring more energy, creativity, and positivity to my practice. I think every teacher needs the support system that is the Educators’ Cooperative. I can be reached at

Chris Spiegl


My name is Chris Spiegl. I currently teach Earth Science to 8th graders at the Montgomery Bell Academy, where I enjoy sharing an understanding of Earth’s complexity and diversity with my students in a hands-on, engaged and practical manner. Prior to MBA, I taught agronomy in the highland Andes to K-12 students and developed 4-F clubs as a Peace Corp volunteer. Following PC Ecuador, I taught bilingual science and math in NYC Public Schools and studied at Teachers College, Columbia University in the inaugural class of the Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Fellows program. My challenge and passion involves keeping abreast of changes in Earth systems, technology in education and best practices in pedagogy. Conferences help, but my endeavors are enhanced, enabled and maximized when ongoing and local with like-minded colleagues. The Educator’s Cooperative allows me regular interaction throughout the school year with incredible colleagues from a variety of school models, all committed to best practices and sharing of “what works”.