Run Schools Like Disney: Equitable Access for All With Lynmara Colón
What if schools were run like Disney? How would this philosophy affect the educational experiences of all students, and particularly ELs? What can we learn from Disney about providing access to opportunities that keep students coming back?
We discuss these questions and much more with Lynmara Colón, Director of English Learner Programs at Prince Williams County Public Schools in Virginia. Lyn brings the perspective of a teacher, assistant principal, and principal—positions she has held since joining education in 2003. As principal of an Elementary School in 2014, she served over 1,000 students in grades kindergarten through fifth grade and was able to increase reading engagement by leading a culture of literacy, personalized learning, and collaborative learning teams.
Lynmara believes all schools should be run like Disney; providing magical experiences to every student regardless or their background. She now heads the office that provides comprehensive registration services to English learners and immigrant children, including translation and interpretation services, to a school division serving over 90,000 students. These students represent 124 countries and 149 languages. Colón holds two master’s degrees: a degree in curriculum and instruction, and the other in educational leadership. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in education through Old Dominion University.
During our conversation, we mention the following resources:
- Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, by James Clear
- Principles: Life and Work, by Ray Dalio
- Highest Aspirations episode with Melany Quintero, an EL student who is currently beginning her first semester at Darmouth College
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