Keynote Speakers
  • jo-boaler
    Keynote Speaker: Jo Boaler
    Dr. Jo Boaler is a Professor of Mathematics Education at Stanford University, and the co-founder of youcubed. She is also an analyst for PISA testing in the OECD, and author of the first MOOC on mathematics teaching and learning. Former roles have included being the Marie Curie Professor of Mathematics Education in England, a mathematics teacher in London comprehensive schools and a lecturer and researcher at King's College, London. Her PhD won the national award for educational research in the UK and her book: Experiencing School Mathematics won the 'Outstanding Book of the Year' award for education in Britain. She is an elected fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (Great Britain), and a former president of the International Organization for Women and Mathematics Education (IOWME). She is the recipient of a National Science Foundation 'Early Career Award' and the NCSM Kay Gilliland Equity Award (2014). She is the author of nine books and numerous research articles.
    Her latest book is Mathematical Mindsets: Unleashing Students' Potential through Creative Math, Inspiring Messages and Innovative Teaching (2016), and is published by Wiley. She serves as an advisor to several Silicon Valley companies. She was an Aspen ideas speaker and a White House presenter on girls and STEM. She recently formed to give teachers, parents and student the resources and ideas they need to inspire and excite students about mathematics. Her work has been published in the Times, The Telegraph, The Financial Times and many other news outlets. She was recently named one of the 8 educators "changing the face of education" by the BBC.

  • Featured Presenters
    • Gladys Graham
      Featured Presenter: Cathy Williams
      Cathy Williams is the Co-Founder and the Executive Director of youcubed. Previously Cathy served as the Director of K-12 Mathematics in the Vista Unified School District where her professional development series earned a California State Golden Bell Award. Cathy’s former roles have included a high school mathematics teacher, AVID coordinator, and mathematics department chair and district curriculum leader over an 18-year span before she became a curriculum and instruction administrator in 2003. Cathy served for seven years as the San Diego County Office of Education K-12 Mathematics Coordinator where her key projects included developing the book and professional development program, Math Language that Works and the online math teacher support program Getting Ready for Algebra.

    • Gladys Graham
      Featured Presenter: Gladys Graham
      Gladys Graham's life’s work has been supporting the development and sustainability of positive school culture, high student academic performance and effective leadership. She excels at designing and facilitating professional development for teachers, students and school leaders, whether serving as a Head of School or an independent consultant.
      Recent work includes establishing a clustered network of charter schools aligned with all components of The Children's Guild Transformation Education school model in the Maryland/DC area. Gladys has served as a School Designer and MD Regional Director for Expeditionary Learning, a school design model that provides teachers and students with academically rigorous experiences marked by purposeful learning, challenge, collaboration and perseverance. During her tenure at Expeditionary Learning, Gladys co-developed and facilitated many mathematics workshops. "Expeditionary Learning rekindled the math teacher in me! There's nothing more exciting than a student's habitual inclination to see math as useful and worthwhile and experience a deepening in a student's own mathematical efficacy."

    • Scott Laidlaw
      Featured Presenter: Scott Laidlaw
      Scott Laidlaw is a math teacher-turned-game designer. With 14 years of in-classroom teaching experience at the elementary, secondary and university levels since earning his doctoral degree from the University of Northern Colorado, Scott has focused on research into how students learn mathematics through the imagination and development of tools to enhance such learning. Scott began teaching math at a middle school where fewer than 28% of his students were proficient in math. Inspired by Sky Mall's World's Largest Write-on Map, Scott developed a math game based on the spice trade in the 1600s. Encouraged by his students' popular refrain, "do we get to play the game today?" he developed seven story-based, in-classroom math games with historical fiction themes that became the focal point of his classroom curriculum, and which also led to a remarkable 80% gain in proficiency over four years. One of the most popular games, Ko, as it was originally called, was written over the summer in an amazing region of the Andes amidst 20,000 feet peaks and played with stone totems on hand-painted deer hides. Five years later in 2010, with students still recalling how they had learned the Cartesian Coordinate system from Luna of the Night Sky, Scott released Ko's Journey to software, winning a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grant to disseminate nation-wide. Since the original release of Ko's Journey, Scott has led the design and development of The MSM Digital Toolset, incorporating Ko's Journey, Empires, the first socially-networked, story-based pre-algebra game, Test Trainer Pro, the MSM Clicker System and the MSM Story Project Library. Most recently, his MidSchoolMath team secured a Small Business Innovation and Research Grant from the National Science Foundation to support the development of an innovative Math Simulator.

    • Megan LeBleu
      Featured Presenter: Megan LeBleu
      Megan LeBleu is a National Board Certified teacher who taught math at a high-poverty middle school in Albuquerque, New Mexico for 14 years. During those years she became a master at collaborating with fellow teachers, making math curriculum engaging and accessible to students. She is highly skilled at integrating technology in the classroom and is well versed in the Common Core math standards.

    • Kevin Simpson
      Featured Presenter & Moderator: Kevin Simpson
      Kevin Simpson launched KDSL Global, an education consulting company in 2016 in the USA and in the UAE. The company focuses on empowering educators and education businesses globally. Mr. Simpson has served 500+ schools and thousands of educators worldwide in 20 countries. The majority of his work in education has centered on American curriculum schools. Since 2008, he has been focused on education in the MENA region, assisted numerous schools with accreditation, training, and development and served as a thought partner on school start-up projects. Simpson has authored two white papers on American curriculum schools in Dubai and co-wrote a bilingual document on American Education in the UAE. He has served as a math coach for 30 schools in Washington D.C. and Maryland. In addition, Simpson has collaborated on math reform projects in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and Nigeria. He has been training schools around the world on the Common Core mathematics standards since 2011 and co-founded the MENA Common Core Conference in 2013 as a source of support for educators. His current focus is on growing awareness of the new GCC ASCD Connected Community. Simpson holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education and a Master of Education degree in Curriculum and Teaching from Michigan State University (USA). Currently, he is a member of the Association for the Advancement of International Education (AAIE) and studying in their Institute for International School Leadership.

    • Kevin Simpson
      Featured Presenter: Steve Leinwand
      Steve Leinwand is a Principal Research Analyst at the American Institutes for Research (AIR) in Washington, D.C. and has over 30 years of leadership positions in mathematics education. Steve has served on the Mathematical Sciences Education Board during the development and publication of “Everybody Counts”, as president of the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics, and on the NCTM Board of Directors where he helped to review NCTM’s “Principles and Standards for School Mathematics.” Steve also served as Chair of the Writing Team for NCTM's Principles to Actions (2014). He has written numerous articles, books, and textbooks, including Sensible Mathematics: A Guide for School Leaders in an Era of Common Core State Standards (2012), and Accessible Math: 10 Instructional Shifts that Raise Student Achievement (2009).