As an avid reader, Dr. Suzanne Newell understands the power of words and the importance of sharing ideas. Her experiences as a first grade teacher allowed her to cultivate a love of reading in students. Throughout her career, she has worked in large and small, public and private schools as a primary grade teacher and curriculum administrator. For the past 19 years, she has worked as a curriculum specialist helping teachers and school systems to grow their capacities in the area of literacy instruction, to strengthen district-wide systems of support ensuring that students in every school within a district have common/quality access to literacy instruction, and to help connect the school context digitally so that students and teachers can experience the power that digital tools can bring to literacy learning.
Dr. Newell earned her B. S. in Early Childhood Education from Oklahoma State, her M. Ed. from the University of Texas at Austin in Curriculum and Instruction, and her Ed. D. in Educational Leadership from the University of North Texas. Her dissertation work focused on standards-based assessment, and she has spent the past 5 years helping school districts transition both their philosophies and their practices to more meaningful methods of assessment. She served as a trainer for the Abydos (formerly New Jersey Writing Project in Texas) for 12 years and is currently a member of the Learning Forward Academy studying the power of student voice as a tool for change in schools. She has consulted for states across the US, and she currently works as the Director of Humanities in a mid-sized school district in Texas.