Meet the Team: Christopher Iafrati, Human Performance Center Adjunct Instructional Specialist

Earlier this fall, Christopher lafrati was named our Adjunct Instructional Specialist for our Human Performance Center (HPC) — a role that has the Upstate New York native tasked with organizing morning exercise and intramurals, as well as overseeing safety in our Olympic size swimming pool, and teaching classes that help Eagle Rock School students establish and maintain healthy life skills.

Christopher lafratiWhile Christopher is new to his current role on our instructional staff, he’s is no stranger to Eagle Rock, having served as part of the HPC team as a Public Allies Fellow in 2015/2016. And lucky for us, he’s also no stranger to taking on optional assignments, which this trimester includes teaching yoga and becoming a part of our school’s ensemble group.

Our new adjunct instructional specialist received a Bachelor of Science degree in exercise science from the State University of New York at Buffalo (aka University at Buffalo) and, following his fellowship year, returned to that school to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology.

We recently asked Christopher to fill us in on a few other details of his life, and below are his responses: Continue reading…

Eagle Rock Blueprints Describe Both Physical and Mission Projects

A set of blueprints is most often construed as an architectural plan for a physical building project. And, in truth, we’re discussing such a construction project in today’s post that will see the first of two new buildings bringing a welcome — and needed — addition to Eagle Rock 640-acre campus in Estes Park, Colo.

But we’re also talking today about a second set of “blueprints” that specifically affects Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center’s institutional planning process. Called Vision 2020, this blueprint enables our board members and staff to fulfill our mission by carefully planning for the allocation and use of resources.

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As the result of a thorough planning process conducted several years ago, our board — assisted by students and staff — adopted an updated plan that incorporates seven major areas of focus (called domains) to be carried out over a multi-year period.

These domains range from one dealing with the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion; to another describing the implementation of an Continue reading…

Meet the Team: Jannai Smith, Human Performance Instructional Specialist

Jannai SmithJannai Smith, the Human Performance Instructional Specialist here at Eagle Rock School, kick-starts her work days by taking our students through their morning exercises, conducting intramurals and recreation activities. In addition, she’s responsible for our Human Performance Center, where she plans, organizes and directs the operations of sports and fitness programs, activities and services aimed at addresses students’ physical fitness and healthy living.

Jannai joined us this past summer, and she arrived here with an impressive work history, having been a physical education teacher at a public school in Muncie, Ind. As a coach, she recalls spending many nights on the road, traveling to different games for volleyball, basketball and track & field. Prior to that, Jannai worked for three years in a juvenile detention/treatment center and another three years as a Ball State Recreational Center intern.

We asked Jannai to tell us a little about herself, and here is what she had to say:

Eagle Rock: Why did you choose to come to work for Eagle Rock?

Jannai Smith: I decided to apply because Eagle Rock offered Continue reading…

Professional Development Team on Pace to Facilitate 30 Events This Trimester

As our 76th trimester gets underway at Eagle Rock School, our Professional Development Center continues to host and facilitate the needs and opportunities of educational organizations around the country — with 30 such events on the calendar for the trimester at hand.

With an asset-based lens embedded in our facilitation, we support educators in determining and applying steps that lead towards powerful organizational transformation. The objective is to re-engage students in their own education. Learn more about our work by visiting the Professional Development Center section of our website. Or, for a more precise accounting of our work — including a partial list of current PDC clients and the work we’re doing between now and the end of this year — please see below:

AUGUST 2018

August 9 – 10

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iLEAD, Castaic, Calif.: Founded 10 years ago in the Santa Clarita Valley area of Southern California, iLEAD  charter schools focus on project-based learning and student-led assessments to improve the quality of education. Dan Condon, Eagle Rock’s Associate Director of Professional Development, spent two days with Empower Generations (a charter school that supports pregnant and parenting teens) and Innovation Studios (a high school with a hybrid learning environment of human resources and technology). Dan’s objective was to cover enduring understandings and learning targets with the two program’s instructors.

August 20 – 21

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I Have a Dream Foundation (IHAD), Boulder, Colo.: With the objective of assisting low-income students to and through college, iHAD’s seeks to provide a long-term, comprehensive educational and cultural enrichment programs to members of Boulder’s student body. Dan Condon was on hand to provide support for launching professional learning communities within this organization.

August 24

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New Visions Charter School for the Humanities IV, Queens, N.Y.: Dan visited the charter school in Queens, N.Y., to discuss a future partnership. New Visions school in Rockaway Park, offers routes to success for urban students who otherwise might not have access to both formal arts training and a college preparatory education. Eagle Rock envisions working with the organization to Continue reading…

Eagle Rock School Seeks a Math Instructional Specialist

If your idea of fun includes empowering diverse teens to learn math concepts and skills, and you believe in learner-centered education, then this blog post could change your life! Here at Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center, we’re conducting a search for an Interim Math Instructional Specialist — a position on our school’s faculty that works directly with students who have agreed to pivot and engage themselves in their own education.

The initial contract for this position runs from Jan. 3, 2019 through Aug.13, 2019 (thus the “interim” status), with the opportunity for the incumbent to apply for a permanent position as our Math Instructional Specialist post that begins in August of next year.

Video—Watch an Eagle Rock School Math class in action:

Regardless of job status, the Interim Math Instructional Specialist, who will report to our Director of Curriculum, serves as a key part of our instructional team, and will be responsible for students’ development of math reasoning and related skills — both through designing and implementing innovative curriculum and through extracurricular math opportunities.

An obvious plus for us is a candidate who has experience working with diverse adolescents, including a mix of Continue reading…