Advisory Committee

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


Joel Bezaire

EdCampNash

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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 jbezaire@email.usn.org.


Colleen Cummings

Grants and Development

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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.    


Alecia Ford

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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

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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 Jacqueline.gregory2@mnps.org or jackiebgregory7@gmail.com.


Mike Mitchell

Community Connections and Collaboration

I am one of many artists at Father Ryan High School and try to connect as many students and teachers in Nashville to one another as possible through art, service projects and technology. I can be reached at cowboyconceptual@gmail.com or MitchellM@fatherryan.org .


Amy Nystrand

Project Coordinator

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I am currently in my fourth 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 Amy.Nystrand@mnps.org.


Greg O’Loughlin

Director

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Now in my 10th 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. I am now happier than ever teaching 6th grade English where I get to share my passions for the written word, grammar, and poetry.

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 greg@educatorscooperative.com.


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 Lindsay.Roe@leadpublicschools.org

Chris Spiegl

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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”.