Enriched began as one teacher’s daydream. Hungry for better substitute coverage and more enriching moments in schools, Andre tested the concept of transformative guest educators in the summer of 2012. Instead of a worksheet or a movie, students participated in a movement and mindfulness class taught by a local instructor.
In the year since, Enriched has grown to include a variety of flexible educational staffing needs. Nowadays, we provide schools and partners with a range of talented professionals who can teach a prepared lesson, bring their own curriculum, or support the ongoing work of caring for and developing young minds.
The way it works is simple: great people sign up and tell us about themselves -- their passions, their skills, their availability. We pair them up with roles for which schools need support, and support them throughout the position. On a regular basis, we hold gatherings and share info aimed at promoting their growth as a guest educator.
We are working toward a world where adults in a community can seamlessly contribute their skills and talents to the education of their children, and where all learning moments have the potential to engage, inspire, and empower.
Our mission is simple: to tap the power of community wherever and whenever learning happens.
Why? Our communities are overflowing with talent. Our neighbors have tremendous skills, passion, and experiences to contribute to the education of our city’s children, and are looking for a way to do so.
Simply put, Enriched exists to bring great educators to great kids. We allow full-time teachers to rest assured that their class is in good hands and that no hour of learning is lost. The kids don’t miss a beat.
We envision a world where the boundaries between schools and communities are fluid and permeable, where talents of community members are seamlessly integrated into a child's education and where each moment of learning has the potential to surprise, excite, inspire, empower and comfort.
From second lines to crawfish boils, no city knows community like New Orleans. For us, Community means two things.
First, we believe that when it comes to providing a world-class education, it takes a village. We think there is a place in schools for grandmas, poets, chefs, scientists, and community leaders. We know that students behave better when a parent is in the room, and that they learn more when they see their course material play out in real life. For these reasons we seek out guest educators with commitment to and passion for their community.Second, we believe that bringing our diverse educators together on a regular basis leads to improved practice. At our professional development sessions and monthly gatherings, we plant the seeds for mentorship and networking so that folks can challenge their own perspectives and gain support as they grow.
We believe in letting our educators bring their “spark” to their classrooms. Whether it is a national slam poetry champion performing a poem about a family member or a public health advocate incorporating wellness into her after-school sports class, we see each day as a chance to bring something unique and engaging to students.
Moreover, we think schools can be places where children find their voice. By bringing in role models from a variety of professions and backgrounds, we believe we can assist them in discovering and activating their own identity and aspirations.
We believe that our partners and our educators deserve our best service so that they can focus on what they do best: educate. We do our absolute best to stay responsive, punctual, and proactive so that everyone's Enriched experience is a positive one.
We know that there is always going to be room for us to improve. To this end, we seek continual feedback and evaluation so that we can provide better service, to all of our stakeholders, from start to finish.
"I am a dancer, yogi, and former english teacher who wants to help learners and teachers connect because powerful learning moments spark passions, build innovators and grow strong communities."
André began her career in education as part of Teach For America, where she taught high school English at Chalmette High School. During her first years teaching, Andre founded Youth Run NOLA to provide positive, safe and structured after-school programming for her own 9th grade students. Since then, Andre has worked for the TFA - Greater New Orleans regional staff team and as a LEE Policy Fellow. Andre graduated with a dual degree in English and French, and Dance minor, from Barnard College, Columbia University.
She is excited to be a part of Enriched because of the special moments that are possible when community leaders, grandparents, artists, poets and more share their passions with young people. When she's not observing talented educators in action, Andre can be found reading the Sunday paper at the fly, ordering chicken pho on the west bank or yelling "whodat" on game day.
Alex came to New Orleans in 2010 and quickly dove into the work of helping our city’s youngest students learn and grow. Over the past five years, he’s been helping his First Grade students develop their skills as readers, writers, mathematicians, and critical thinkers. He studied Literature, Philosophy, and Chinese as an undergraduate and completed a Masters in Education in 2012.
Our communities are full of talented and passionate people that have so much to contribute to our schools and their students. Enriched matches these amazing people to the needs of our schools. Alex is excited to help Enriched do this even more effectively in New Orleans and bring the model to schools in other communities across the country. When he’s not working with Enriched, Alex can be found reading, traveling, running, and working with students as a reading and writing small group instructor.
“I am a hip hop artist, mentor, and songwriter who wants to inspire and empower children because so many people have guided and shaped me.”
Shannon’s passion for music and using it for positive influence took her from the stage to the classroom, where she was able to teach and mentor middle school youth here in New Orleans. She recently graduated from Loyola University New Orleans with her B.S. in Music Industry Studies and a minor in Business Administration. Volunteering her time with organization such as the Freret Neighborhood Center, One by One Productions, and True Love Movement has given this Pittsburgh native more insight into the New Orleans education system.
Shannon is excited to be apart of Enriched because she realized that her passion for life and learning is a product of the enrichment she received in school. She plays an integral role in Enriched events, partnership development, and new applicant processes. In her spare time Shannon (also known as ShayBriggs) can be found on a local stage, at the recording studio, and (soon) on your iPod.
"My favorite part of Enriched is that it connects one of the best assets in New Orleans – its creative, talented people – to on-going staffing needs in our schools all for the purposes of student learning."
Leslie Garrote started began teaching in January 2003, a month after graduating from Tulane University with a degree in history and math. She joined the faculty of Desire Street Academy, an all-boys school in the Ninth Ward of New Orleans. Leslie served at DSA for five years as a social studies, math and Spanish teacher, and eventually as curriculum coordinator and headmaster. Leslie earned an M.A. in Secondary Social Studies Education from The City College of New York in 2009 and recently completed a M.Ed. in School Leadership from Covenant College in May 2015. From 2012 to 2015, she served as a coach to new teachers and as a professor of education for the Memphis Teacher Residency.
She returned to New Orleans and is excited to be a part of Enriched because it allows her to stay in practice as a teacher, an instructional coach while also granting access to schools and students across the city. When she's not guest educating or observing other talented educators in action, Leslie can be found reading in Crescent Park, gathering with neighbors on her front porch facing St. Roch park, or working an evening shift at Koreole in the St. Roch Market.
Miami native and passionate fan of any team from her hometown, Kelly comes to Enriched after teaching Spanish with Teach for America DC in Prince George's County, Maryland at Oxon Hill High School. The daughter of a Cuban immigrant mother and Bronx-raised father, Kelly took an early interest in social justice issues in her extremely diverse but socioeconomically divided hometown. Kelly earned her BA in government from Georgetown University in 2013 and called the District home for six years before returning to Miami.
Kelly is excited to join Enriched because she loves her hometown and its people, and can't wait for Enriched to serve as a connector of the amazing gente and students of Miami as well as a problem-solver for schools. In her spare time, Kelly can be found exploring neighborhoods, eating comida cubana, lounging on the idyllic sands of South Florida, or vigorously cheering on the Heat, Fins, or Canes.
Darla Bunting is driven by an unshakeable belief that a child's life’s outcomes shouldn't be determined by where s/he is born. Prior to joining Enriched, Darla led College Summit's national strategy to build an alumni program to support students in college and career. Her career in education began as an elementary school teacher in New Orleans and Washington, DC as part of Teach For America. When Darla's not working, she's actively volunteering in her community. She established and chairs Team First Book-DC, the local affiliate of First Book, and has led the board to raise and award over $130,000 in book grants to teachers, non-profits and community programs serving kids in need. Additionally, she volunteers with BUILD in order to teach high school students about entrepreneurship, and is a member of the Junior League of Washington, Capital Cause and Leadership for Educational Equity. Darla's received The EnVest Foundation's 40under40 Award, Millennial Week's Award for Social Good and numerous other accolades for her public service contributions. She resides in Washington, DC, holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland and a Masters of Education with a focus in Education Policy and Leadership from American University.
Darla is thrilled to lead Enriched’s work in the nation’s capital connecting schools to communities during times when schools need them most. She’s most excited about seeing kids get excited about engaging learning experiences that are a break from the typical school day. Follow her @darlabunting.
“I am a former English teacher, non-profit organization leader, and community activist who has dedicated my life to public service, youth advocacy, education, and philanthropy. I believe that all children can excel and reach their peak of success despite their family background, socio-economic status, or community challenges.”
A native of Washington, DC, Portia understands the power of endurance and perseverance on the journey to success. Portia earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. With a deep interest in juvenile justice and education policy, she earned a Master of Science degree in Public Policy from Drexel University. After recognizing her strong passion and investment in equal education for inner city youth, Portia joined Teach for America in 2011. She was afforded the opportunity to teach in a school in the same community where she grew up, which has greatly influenced the strong relationships that she has built with her students, parents, and members of the community. In May 2013, Portia completed a Master of Science in Special Education from George Mason University. Portia is the CEO/Founder of Tumaini DC, Inc., a non-profit organization that provides mentoring, academic enrichment, and social services to youth and families in underserved communities across Washington, DC.
She is excited to be a part of Enriched because it allows her to empower and educate students, teachers, and parents daily. When she's not spending the day “enriching” schools, Portia can be found spending time with her son Mahari, attending a yoga class, facilitating youth development workshops, or traveling.
New Orleans native born and raised, Patrick didn't always subscribe to the philosophy that New Orleans is the big easy. An experienced community organizer and peer educator, Patrick is currently focused on improving educational opportunities for disconnected youth citywide.
Patrick believes he is called to work in education and this is where his passion and purpose meets. Patrick is always there networking, mentoring, teaching, inspiring, and enriching not only at work but in life. Patrick walks the talk in community development and fighting for a better future for all our children.
Bro. Shack is a community empowerment specialist based in New Orleans, Louisiana, but serves communities nationally. He is a speaker, educator, mentor, facilitator and promoter who emphasizes the social and cultural development of Black men in America.
Bro. Shack partners with many different community organizations in an effort to unify and mobilize the community-at-large for economic development, social change and self-sustainability. Bro. Shack thinks that deliberate action changes things. His mantra is "Be Intentional."
Laura Burns has taught and worked with teachers in New Orleans for the past five years. She’s primarily an English teacher with a passion for the written word. As an Enriched educator, she wants to focus on creativity and LGBTQ education.
Laura believes that an education that nurtures critical thinking and creativity is what all children deserves. She envisions an educational system in which communities, schools, parents, teachers, political leaders, and everyone in between are working together as advocates for our students.
"I am a technology guy. I love making products that are slick, easy to use and beautiful."
Tanzeel is a Babson MBA. He has been involved with a number of technology startups and is currently advising a bunch of them on making it big. Tanzeel is excited to be part of Enriched because he thinks by taking the concept of Enriched online and bringing it to a bigger audience will make a huge difference in the current education system.
Tanzeel has had the experience of living in a number of different parts of the world and he adds value to the Enriched team through his diverse experience. Tanzeel loves skiing and he is a paragliding pilot as well. When he is not in front of the computer screen he is definitely out there in the mountains.