WSCA Annual Event

Thank you for considering me as a keynote speaker at WSCA’s annual event. With my background as an educational researcher, curriculum designer, and classroom teacher, I have a deep connection to your conference topics and a strong record of training school leaders and professionals for success.

Proposed talk:

“Feedforward, Not Feedback: Setting a New Tone for High-Performance and Partnership at School”

Summary and Key Outcomes:

The journey to career success takes shape in the classroom, where the messages students receive about their performance and potential carry lasting impact. Too often, these communications diminish, rather than elevate, students’ aspirations and goals. To create thriving, successful and career-ready populations, teachers, administrators and student support professionals must change the tone and trajectory of everyday feedback to address the whole child.

This entertaining and evidence-based talk will help school counselors learn the art and science of “feedforward” – a transformational feedback approach that sets the conditions for positive and purposeful communication. Instead of focusing on the unchangeable past, feedforward calls attention to the unfolding future. It supports academic and social-emotional growth through actionable guidance and authentic partnerships. Driven by research and practical techniques, feedforward redefines the focus on performance and potential, paving the way for courageous conversations about student work, career readiness, and personal growth.

Actionable Impact:

1. Master the mindsets and methods that create high-trust, authentic relationships between students and their adult champions.

2. Learn proven strategies that span the cultural divide. Create stronger relationships between cross-functional student support teams.

3. Foster collaborative partnerships that boost student trust, agency and career readiness.

Why me?

RESEARCH-FOCUSED: I am a PhD-level researcher who studies ways that school professionals can develop the leadership capacity of others. Drawing on proven methods to build empathy and resilience, I’ve conducted evidence-based trainings and workshops for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Dallas Independent Schools, the National Center for Educational Research and many other educational groups.

PRACTICAL TAKE-AWAY VALUE: I make high-level research more accessible with clear examples, relevant case studies and active practice. Based on my award-winning character education program, I’ve developed real strategies used by school support professionals to foster resilience and empathy. My trainings are high-level but always high-touch.

EXPERIENCED EDUCATOR: With more than a decade of actual (and active) classroom experience, I understand the needs and demands of teachers, counselors and student support professionals. I’ve shared my insights with educators, administrators, school support professionals and policymakers as a presenter at national conferences like LearningForward, Deeper Learning, ASCD and Prizmah. 

TRAINING PARTNER: In cooperation with a top-tier university, I designed the curriculum for an online certification course in differentiated instruction and taught graduate-level coursework to school professionals across the country. My recent book, “The Feedback Fix,” was chosen by the University of Michigan-Flint’s office of student support as a book study. Several other school districts have done the same. Some of my recent education/non-profit clients include The University of Dayton, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Jewish Federation of Dallas, and High Tech High. I’ve also shared my work in the areas of resilience and conflict resolution with the Southwest Conflict Resolution Network to more than 150 mediators and legal professionals.

THOUGHT LEADER: Always passionate about sharing my insights with fellow educators, I’ve written on topics like resilience and collaboration for publications like The Wall Street Journal, Educational Leadership, Inc. and Edutopia, and recently spoke at TEDx.