Gary has been a lifelong teacher/educator and writer/researcher based primarily in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. His education includes a BS in English Education from Northeastern University; a MS Degree in Education from Idaho State University; a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study at the University of New Hampshire(UNH); advanced graduate work in reading and writing from the UNH Literacy Institute; and the PhD program(ABD) in Literacy and Schooling at UNH.
He was a founding administrator of the Virtual Learning Academy Charter School in New Hampshire, a public online high school that has grown from an initial 450 student enrollments to approximately 30,000 student enrollments during the initial stages of the 2016-17 school year. As the school’s initial Chief Learning Officer and a current consultant, writer and researcher for the school, Gary has helped facilitate the introduction of 21st Century Learning Pathways, including college, internships, and projects for middle and high school students. He has always forged institutional and personal relationships into working learning cultures specific to a community. This is evidenced with the growth of blended school communities in NH seamlessly intersecting face-to face and virtual teacher/student environments throughout New Hampshire.
Gary’s background in education as a teacher and administrator; as well as in adult development, school change and structures, and personal & organizational literacy has allowed him to approach challenges schools face from a relational/relationship stance rather than beginning with designing processes and tasks designed to simply reform rather than transform needed school change.
His extensive writing and research experience has focused both on the formal and informal value of writing as a means for developing connections in schools and classrooms. Like several prominent researchers of writing, he believes that the act of writing actively promotes thinking, clarity and reflection; the gateways to meaningful relationships and constructivist learning environments.
Gary’s primary interests and the central topics of posts to his blog will include:
- Reflections on his professional/personal writing and work to attempt to make meaning of the continuing efforts educators and policy makers to transform rather than reform schools, teaching, and learning.
- Insights on the changing landscapes of literacy issues, centered on reading and writing. Especially those changes created by technology and the impacts created for both adults and children
- The needed alignment of adult development considerations as institutions and schools provide professional development to meet demands in rapidly changing societies.
- The importance of differentiating the informal and formal with both adults and children when reading, writing, and reflecting on content, curriculum,instruction, evaluation and assessment; especially if we expect risk taking and growth for all teachers and learners.