Who We Are
Dedicated teacher leaders representing a diverse range of teacher-powered schools who bring their counsel, voices, resources, and influence to the initiative.
Education Evolvingis a Minnesota-based nonprofit that works to advance student-centered learning for all students, by supporting teachers designing and leading schools, and by advocating for policy that catalyzes community-led innovation. Read more about Education Evolving.
Amy Junge is a former California public elementary and middle school teacher and assistant principal. She started working with teacher-powered schools in 2009 and was a contributing author for Trusting Teachers with School Success: What Happens When Teachers Call the Shots. Today, Amy works with Education Evolving supporting teacher-powered schools through the Teacher Powered Schools Initiative.
Marcus Penny runs communications for the Teacher-Powered Schools Initiative and Education Evolving. Before joining EE, he ran communications at a national nonprofit supporting service-learning. There he worked with teachers to develop a project planning platform and helped plan multiple national conferences designed for teachers and students. His first job after college was as a social emotional advocate for preschoolers in Head Start programs, after which he never strayed from the path of supporting teachers to nurture young minds.
Teacher-Powered Schools Initiative
Sarah Giddings is a National Board Certified Teacher who is a teacher leader and curriculum coordinator for the WAVE Program—a reimagined alternative high school she helped develop. She is also a Teacher Ambassador for the Teacher-Powered Schools Initiative, where she supports professional learning opportunities and communications and engagement.
Alex spent the first part of her career working as a teacher in Minneapolis and abroad in Costa Rica and Italy. She grew frustrated with the system and left teaching to advocate for education reforms. Today, Alex handles outreach and engagement for EE in Minnesota—spending her days talking to teachers and learning what matters to them. She also supports teachers in Minnesota who are interested in or actively working in teacher-powered schools. Witnessing teachers make the changes they know are needed, without having to leave their classrooms is what inspires Alex.
Contact Alex Vitrella at firstname.lastname@example.org
Lars was first exposed to teacher-powered schools as a student. He graduated from the Minnesota New Country School, a teacher-powered high school in Henderson, MN. In his time there, he saw first-hand how collective autonomy allowed his teachers to connect with him as an individual, and to shape a personalized learning trajectory that motivated and inspired him. Lars is deeply grateful for the idea of teacher-powered schools, and is excited to advocate for them now as an adult!