Best Practices for Community Collaboration in Schools: Creating a Sound Learning Ecosystem



Webinar Objectives

  • Explore approaches to instruction in underserved communities 
  • Identify opportunities and challenges in serving these communities 
  • Learn about two successful school models which may be replicable in other situations and geographies 

Sponsored by Annenberg Institute and Akanksha.

Nancy Waymack

Moderator: Nancy Waymack
Director of Research Partnerships and Policy, National Student Support Accelerator

Nancy Waymack is the Director of Research Partnerships and Policy for the National Student Support Accelerator at the Annenberg Institute. Most recently she has served as a senior program officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and an education policy consultant. Prior to joining the Gates Foundation, Nancy was the Managing Director of District Policy at the National Council on Teacher Quality. Nancy spent a decade at the San Francisco Unified School District, where she served as the Executive Director for Policy and Operations. Prior to moving to San Francisco, Nancy was the Assistant Budget Director at the District of Columbia Public Schools and an elementary school teacher in Houston.


Susanna Loeb

Susanna Loeb
Director, Annenberg Institute at Brown University
Professor of Education
Professor of International and Public Affairs

Susanna’s research focuses broadly on education policy and its role in improving educational opportunities for students. Her work has addressed issues of educator career choices and professional development, of school finance and governance, and of early childhood systems. She is the founder and acting executive director of the National Student Support Accelerator. Before moving to Brown, Susanna was the Barnett Family Professor of Education at Stanford University. She was the founding director of the Center for Education Policy (CEPA) at Stanford and co-director of Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE). Susanna led the research for both Getting Down to Facts projects for California schools. She is a member of the National Academy of Education and an American Education Research Association Fellow. In 2020, she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She holds a PhD in Economics and an MPP in Public Policy from the University of Michigan, and a BA in Political Science and a BS in Civil Engineering from Stanford University.

Gloria Corral

Gloria Corral

Gloria Corral is the President and CEO of the Parent Institute for Quality Education (PIQE). Her passion for K-12 and higher education spans more than 25 years and includes work at the U.S. Department of Education, the House of Representatives and the Senate. Her expertise in education policy focused on Dual Language Learners, along with her extensive knowledge of system integration is both from developing policy and implementing programs that have been informed by years of working with state departments of education, local and state non-profits, advocacy organizations and large school districts. Corral previously served as the Assistant Executive Director at First 5 San Diego where she led San Diego County’s Quality Early Learning efforts along with other key initiatives for children 0-5 and their families. She worked in early learning for 15 years in policy, program and advocacy and continues her work in the educational equity journey through family engagement and empowerment.

Corral holds an undergraduate degree from the University of California San Diego and a master’s degree in Public Policy from the University of California Berkeley. She is the parent of two vivacious boys, Diego Emilio and Gael Antonio, who maintain her passion for improving access to high quality educational opportunities for all children.

Stacy Darga

Stacy Darga

Stacy Darga is the Community Schools Site Coordinator at Westside Elementary in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, USA. She truly feels honored to have been part of the team that brought the community schools model to Sun Prairie in 2012 which has grown from just her school to now six schools in our school district. She is truly passionate about her school and community where her and her husband's children were educated and where the family has resided since 1998.

Sushma Pathare

Sushma Pathare
School Leader, PCMC English Medium School Bopkhel

Sushma Pathare has been the School Leader (Principal) at the PCMC Bopkhel school since 2018. Sushma started her teaching career with Akanksha in 2005 as an after school center teacher before moving on to teaching at an Akanksha school. She has 16 years of experience as an educator, including 7 years in leadership.

Sushma is also a L1 facilitator for Social Emotional Ethical Learning certified by Emory University and is a Centa qualified teacher. Sushma is a continuous learner and has provided input to education strategy as part of the National Education Policy consultations in India.

Rahul Gupta

Rahul Gupta
COO, Akanksha Foundation, India

Rahul joined Akanksha in 2011 as a School Leader and over the next 8 years, led schools in Mumbai and Pune – focused on a vision of excellence in education for all children.

Recognizing that a mere excellent educational experience in school was not enough for disadvantaged children and that early childhood years are extremely crucial, Rahul founded Pune Children’s Zone Foundation (PCZ) in 2018 with a vision to ‘build the strongest life foundation for all children’.

Rahul was a Teach for India Fellow, 2009. A Teach for All Global School Leadership Fellow, 2013 and has served on the National Advisory Board of Teach for India from 2016-19.

Rahul holds a B. A(Hons.) degree in Economics from University of Delhi and a B.Ed. degree from the University of Pune. He is also pursuing the Senior Management Program from IIM-Ahmedabad.

Rahul’s primary areas of interest have included strategy, people development and leadership. He is keen on incorporating management and leadership principles towards building progressive, pioneering organizations for the future.