Statewide Coordinator, Beginning Teacher Leadership Network
Joanna Schimizzi is a National Board Certified Biology teacher and was recognized as a MeckEd Teacher of Excellence. She taught Biology and AP Biology in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools for over 9 years before leaving the classroom to work from home and stay home with her son. Joanna currently collaborates with Special Education teachers across the state to teach Biology through the OCS Program at North Carolina Virtual Public Schools. Joanna is committed to public schools and collaborates with organizations such as Hope Street Group, the Public School Forum, and the NC Association for Educators to include educator voice in policy discussions.
One policy issue that Joanna strongly believes in is the support and elevation of beginning teachers. Beginning teachers (years one through three of their career) are filled with energy, new ideas and passion for students, but they are also overwhelmed with the intricacies of being a classroom teacher. Joanna believes that by providing beginning teachers with opportunities to collaborate with each other, they will find increased support to stay in the profession and their students will benefit from what teachers learn from each other. Helping beginning teachers engage with policymakers allows these professionals to learn more about how to influence the policies that impact their students and ensure that all educators have a voice in policy discussions.
Joanna has led the Beginning Teacher Leadership Network cohort in Mecklenburg County and is proud to support the statewide collaboration of cohorts that Public School Forum has created.