AUTHORS & CONTRIBUTORS
Get to know the people behind the revolution!
Dr. Paul Bloomberg
Dr. Paul Bloomberg is the founder and Chief Learning Officer for the Core Collaborative, a professional learning network that specializes in student-centered approaches to learn¬ing. Paul is the co-author of the best seller, Leading Impact Teams: Building a Culture of Efficacy published by Corwin Press. In addition, Paul serves on the advisory board for Spiire, a network made up of individuals, coaches and thought leaders committed to growing the potential of LGBTQI community.
Prior to founding The Core Collaborative, he was the former director of TIDES (Transformative Inquiry Design for Effective Schools &Systems), a nonprofit in San Diego focusing on inquiry-based learning. Paul is a former principal and instructional leader and has directly supported multiple, successful school turn-around and school innovation efforts nationally. Paul also served as national Author Consultant for Corwin Professional Learning, a North American Visible Learning Consultant for John Hattie, and a Distinguished Professional Development Associate for the Leadership &Learning Center, founded by Douglas Reeves.
Paul’s passion is partnering with professional learning teams and sys¬tems in an effort to empower ALL students to take ownership of their learning. He is deeply committed to enhancing student success and believes that we all share in the responsibility for equity and diversity. Paul resides in San Diego with his husband Tony and his two sons, Alex and Taylor.
Barb Pitchford is the Executive Director of Professional Learning and co-founder of The Core Collaborative. During her 30 plus years in public education, Barb has worked at all school levels - high, middle, and elementary - as a teacher, counselor, assistant principal and principal. For the past several years Barb has worked for a variety of professional development organizations including The Leadership and Learning Center where she was recognized as a Distinguished Professional Development Consultant.
Barb also worked with Corwin Press as a consultant specializing in Visible Learning work. Barb is most proud of the work she led as principal of her last school that was awarded state recognition as a top performing school several years running. During that time, she also worked closely with Bob Marzano during the development of state-wide standards for Colorado.
Barb’s passion and commitment is around helping to ensure high-impact school leadership. Based on the research around collaboration and formative assessment, Barb specializes in developing Impact Teams to improve student and teacher learning.
As a consultant, Kara Vandas works with districts and schools around the country to implement processes and practices that best support student learning. She is the co-author of Partnering with Students: Building Ownership of Learning and Clarity For Learning. Her areas of focus include implementing practices that encourage students to be partners in learning, the Visible Learning research and professional learning, EmpowerED Coaching™, EmpowerED Assessment™ and EmpowerED curriculum design™.
Kara brings experience in these areas from her previous work as the Director of Teacher Effectiveness for the Colorado League of Charter Schools. In this role, she was responsible for partnering with over 30 public, charter schools around the state of Colorado in the implementation of Data Teams and Rigorous Curriculum Design. In doing so, Kara has had the opportunity to support rural, urban, and suburban schools of various instructional models, student populations, and across K-12 systems in order to best implement these powerful practices.
Over the course of her career in education, Kara has worked as a teacher, teacher leader, trainer, and program developer. She holds a Master of Arts in Education in Curriculum and Instruction from Regis University and Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Wyoming.
In her career, she has also worked to establish an innovative teacher education program for teachers serving high-need students. In addition, Kara worked with Edison Schools, now Edison Learning, to train teachers in effective instructional and classroom management practices. Kara also taught with Edison Schools at two charters in Colorado, where she taught middle school science, reading, and language arts. Her teaching career began at the Denver Street School, an alternative school for high-need youth in Denver, CO.
Kara remains passionate about supporting all students in becoming successful learners and views her work as an opportunity to reach students around the country through working with teachers and administrators in implementing proven and powerful practices.