During her last visit to Detroit, Emily met many inspiring educators but one in particular really stood out; Jen McMillan. Jen is the Co-Founder and Head of School at Detroit Prep Academy,  an elementary school in the Indian Village neighborhood. The school is a bright spot in an educational ecosystem that has certainly seen it’s fair share of challenges. Detroit Prep uses the EL Education approach and focus on providing students rich and deep learning experiences –that both help them grow academically and personally.

We wanted the Getting Smart audience to hear more from Jen about how she works to help create a learning culture that is collaborative, compassionate and courageous. Teachers at Detroit Prep work together, embrace learning themselves and are ready to face any challenge if it will lead to better experiences and outcomes for students.

While we  trust her passion will come through in the podcast interview, it’s important to say that it was clear during Emily’s visit that Jen has a relentless commitment to the students and families Detroit Prep serves.

Key Takeaways:

[2:00] All about Jen’s background and current role at Detroit Prep.
[2:52] How Jen got to where she is currently at Detroit Prep.
[4:43] What Jen has seen this past couple of years in Detroit’s education system.
[7:25] About Detroit Prep’s diverse student body and individualized support to give all children a first-class education.
[9:23] Detroit Prep’s current building hosting.
[10:19] All about Detroit Prep’s deeper learning experiences.
[11:11] Detroit Prep’s six habits of character and weekly goal student goals.
[13:17] The element of community and bringing the community experience to the school.
[15:11] What the switch to the new curriculum has been like for teachers.
[19:00] What a culturally responsive classroom looks like day-to-day for teachers and students.
[23:49] What brings Jen hope and joy about teaching and learning in 2018.

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