Education Pioneers Leading the Way With James Tynan of Khan Academy and Shanna Peeples

During this week’s radio show you will learn about:

  • Khan Academy’s Mission and Work Outside of the Classroom
  • The Importance of Teaching ‘Hustle’
  • The Power of Personalized Learning
  • How Trust Affects Education of Those Dealing With Trauma
  • What is Inspiring in Public Education Today
James Tynan

James leads the Adoption team at Khan Academy. This means he drives efforts to bring a free world-class education to more students by developing programs and working with partner organizations.

Over the past few years James has developed and launched partnerships with organizations including Bank of America, Comcast, Disney/Pixar, NASA, MoMA, and the Aspen Institute.

James came to Khan Academy from McKinsey & Co by way of Purpose.com, a startup that specializes in building and mobilizing online communities. At Purpose he was the founding GM for an advocacy group dedicated to collaborative consumption. At McKinsey he led teams of healthcare and IT professionals to design new modes of care for chronic illness utilizing fiber networks. He also helped develop the Implementation Plan for Australia’s $43 billion fiber-to-the-premises network and delivered the growth strategy for one of Australia’s most popular sports.

James graduated from the University of Technology, Sydney with a degree in Arts (Communication) and a Law degree for which he won the University Medal (Valedictorian).

You can learn more about the Khan Academy here.

Shanna Peeples

Shanna Peeples is the 2015 National Teacher of the Year.

She took a circuitous route to the classroom. She worked as a disc jockey, medical assistant, pet sitter and journalist before teaching, as she says, chose her. Peeples now teaches at Palo Duro High School in Amarillo, Texas, where she spends half of her day as a high school English teacher and the other half mentoring, coaching and challenging her colleagues to grow in the teaching profession.

At Palo Duro High School, her students come from many different backgrounds. Amarillo is one of several cities in the United States that helps refugees find new paths in life and gain access to critical resources. As a result, Peeples works with many students who speak English as a second language or recently entered the United States from another country.

“My students, survivors of deep and debilitating trauma, have shaped the kind of teacher I am,” she says. “They have taught me to never make a promise I can’t keep because so many already have learned to see the world through suspicious eyes. To be the best teacher to them, I have to remember this and honor their background. I remember so I can gain their trust because I want them to read and write their way out of where they are.”

As the 2015 National Teacher of the Year, Shanna is shaping the conversation in this country about working with students in poverty, and those who have already faced extreme challenges in their young lives. Through a variety of teaching methods, Peeples reaches her students and helps them achieve their full potential far beyond her classroom walls.

Shanna has taught for the past 12 years, four of them in her current role. She earned an Associate’s degree from Amarillo College, a Bachelor of Arts from West Texas A&M University and a Master of Education from the University of Texas at Arlington.

You can learn more about Shanna here.

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