Celebrating the 2023-24 LENS Cohort

Congratulations to the 2023-24 cohort on successfully completing the BES LENS leadership development program! 

This year, 16 individuals from across the country completed the program. Members of this cohort hold various roles including Teacher, Principal, Assistant Principal, Instructional Coach, Chief of Staff, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Director of Academies, Teacher & Grade Team Lead, Director of Operations, Associate Dean, Executive Administrator, Manager of Talent HR, and more.

For the last year, LENS leaders gained a new network of support, had bi-weekly 1:1 remote coaching from BES coaches, and engaged in comprehensive, in-person and virtual trainings that covered a range of topics including:

  • Grounding our work in equity to increase awareness of biases and move toward becoming more responsive school leaders.
  • Analyzing data through an equity lens to make informed decisions about shifts in practice to improve outcomes for students.
  • Engaging in courageous conversations about race, identity, and power, so leaders can identify and confront moments of injustice in their schools.
  • Diving into the strategic planning process to prepare for the upcoming year by making critical choices about curricula, programming, and staffing.

Our cohort also participated in two in-person visits to study schools that have equity-centered practices and demonstrated excellent results. Thank you to partner schools in Nashville and Atlanta who opened their door to our LENS leaders and allowed them to get a first hand look of diverse and exemplary school models: DeKalb Brilliance Academy, Drew Charter School, East End Prep, Ethos Classical, Intrepid College Prep, and Valor Collegiate

Members of the 2023-24 LENS cohort:

  • Tammy Chavez, Etoile Academy Charter School
  • Lanasha Edwards, Cold Spring School
  • Summer Graves, Clarksdale Collegiate Public Charter School
  • Halie Griffin, Indiana Math and Science Academy
  • Nitara Jenkins-Morgan, Bloom Academy Charter School
  • Britney Jones, Elevate Collegiate
  • Coral Peters, Collegiate Academies
  • Jennifer Rhinehart, Indiana Math and Science Academy
  • Michael Saltouros, Cold Spring School
  • Tyler Schwartz, Invent Learning Hub
  • Tiffany Valentine, Houston Classical Charter School
  • Jade Falcon, Jefferson RISE
  • Stephanie Innella, Forte Prep
  • James Parker, Houston Classical Charter School
  • Samiaa Shields, Jefferson RISE
  • Eric Tabb, Boston Prep Charter Public School

In their roles, these leaders are making a profound impact on education, and we are proud of their growth and advancement. We commend their commitment to transforming education in our communities and ensuring students across the country are receiving equitable and excellent instruction. They now join a group of over 370 school leaders who have successfully completed the LENS program since 2012. Since then:

  • 3 out of 4 LENS participants have moved into heightened leadership roles within two years of completing the program.
  • 100% of participants said they would recommend LENS/BES coaching to friends from underrepresented backgrounds (2023-24 mid-year survey).
  • 95% of LENS participants said the program was “very effective” or “extremely effective” at growing them as a leader (2022-23 end-of-year survey).

In order to join the program, LENS participants were nominated by their school leader and were required to meet the following qualifications: 

  • Should hold responsibilities beyond classroom instruction.
  • Must be coaching and/or managing adults in schools for at least two hours per week or be responsible for a school-wide program or initiative in the school year to fully access the content of the program.
  • Aligned with BES beliefs about excellent, equitable leaders and schools and are available to participate in the full calendar of LENS training.

 

BES is now enrolling school leaders for the 2024-25 LENS leadership development program. Learn more here.