Joe has worked in education for over 20 years as a teacher, principal, and district administrator, and is the founder and CEO of Crescendo Education Group (Grading for Equity: What It Is, Why It Matters, and How It Can Transform Schools and Classrooms (Corwin) was published in 2018. Crescendo Education Group has partnered with the National Education Association as well as the American Federation of Teachers, National Association of Independent Schools, and Stanford University’s Challenge Success. His online course for Grading for Equity launched this year.), which since 2013 has supported K-12 schools, districts, and colleges/universities nationwide to improve grading and assessment practices. He has presented at many education conferences, and his writings have been published in Education Week, Kappan, Education Leadership, District Administrator, and Black Press USA. His book,
Joe earned his B.A. from Stanford University and a Master’s degree in Teaching and Curriculum from the Harvard School of Education, and is also the author of Teaching Without Bells: What We Can Learn from Powerful Practice in Small Schools (Paradigm, 2010). He lives in Oakland with his wife and two children.
Mark Boswell is a career educator who has worked in education for almost 20 years. He began his career in afterschool programs for underserved students in Atlanta, GA and throughout his career he has taught World History, helped to develop curriculum focused on weaving social emotional learning into all subjects, and co-founded a professional development opportunity for educators of color seeking administrative opportunities within independent schools (The BOLD Summit: Atlanta, GA).
Mark holds an MA in Private School Leadership from the Klingenstein Center at Teachers College, Columbia University and B.A. in Political Science and Economics from Emory University. He currently serves as the Assistant Head of Upper School at the Marin Country Day School in Corte Madera, CA.
Chris has been teaching science in the classroom for 7 years with diverse groups of peers and pupils, the last 6 of which have been in middle grades 6-8 in Bancroft Middle School in San Leandro Unified School District (California), and has used equitable grading practices for several years in his classroom. He is a Proud Papa of his brand new baby boy, and in his waning spare time he likes to play and watch soccer as well as music.
Dr. Jennifer Obidah graduated magna cum laude with a BA in Sociology from Hunter College CUNY, an MA in African American Studies from Yale University and a PhD in Education from UC Berkeley. Her career began as a middle school teacher and after obtaining her PhD, she spent 25 years of her career as a professor and administrator in academe. Currently, as a Certified School Leadership Coach, her work focuses on the social and emotional learning of adult learners. She focuses in particular, on educator’s leadership development in addressing issues of equity and diversity in teaching and learning processes, and cross-racial conflict mediation. Jennifer assists educators in building their capacity to acknowledge, mediate and hold space for themselves and others during moments of tension and conflict. She is the co-author of 2 books both published by Teachers College Press, Columbia University. Her first-authored book titled, “Because of the Kids: Facing Racial and Cultural Differences in Schools,” won the 2001 Gustavus Myers Book Award, an award which recognizes “works that increase understanding of intolerance and bigotry, and that inspire and inform strategies and actions that can lead to greater equity in our society.” Jennifer has also authored and co-authored 52 journal articles, book chapters, conference proceedings and technical reports for educational organizations with topics on teacher education, racial and cultural differences between teachers and students and education in urban schools. She has presented her work at conferences in Barbados, the Bahamas, Grenada, Jamaica, Canada, Namibia, South Africa, Suriname, and the United States. Her work has been recognized by invitations to speak at meetings of the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Adolescent Development and Juvenile Justice, the National Equity Project, and, the Harvard University Civil Rights Project.
Sarah has been teaching high school English for the past 8 years, has fully integrated equitable grading practices into her work. For the past 6 years she has also served as her school’s Curriculum & Instruction Coordinator. She is passionate about equity, social emotional wellness, and relevancy in my teaching practices. She attended Sonoma State University to obtain her Bachelor’s Degree in English Education, and attended Sacramento State University to earn her teaching credential.
Nikole Richardson is a Research and Clinical Associate at the Stanford School of Education. She conducts research related to increasing the number of teachers of color, as well as teaches graduate level courses to teacher / Ed.M. candidates–courses that include Adolescent Development and Learning and Curriculum and Instruction for the Humanities. Prior to joining Stanford School of Education, Nikole was a Visiting Professor at the School of Education at Mills College, as Director of Humanities in the Teachers for Tomorrow’s Schools. She earned her PhD in Curriculum and Teacher Education from Stanford University, where she focused on culturally-responsive pedagogy within school contexts. Before earning her doctorate, Nikole taught high school social studies and humanities for 10 years, primarily on the East Coast.