Meet our 2017 Lea(R)n Fellow

The LearnPlatform was designed by, with and for educators. Two summers ago, we kicked off the Lea(R)n Fellowship program to take that collaboration to the next level. In its third year, the program received a record number of applications from educators across the state of North Carolina - great teacher leaders who want to help innovative schools and districts make results matter.

After the opportunity to interview a diverse pool of fantastic candidates, the Lea(R)n team is excited to announce our 2017 Lea(R)n Fellow, Melissa Stopa, Technology Specialist at Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools.

Also returning for her second fellowship, Cori Odom, IMT Teacher at Davis Drive Elementary School in Cary, NC. Cori will be working with the Lea(R)n team again this summer, supporting the Educator Success Team. She will support implementation efforts with schools and districts, frequently engaging with instructional technologists, edtech leads and teachers to support the successful implementation of and training on LearnPlatform, and coordinate professional development on applying data analysis in everyday classroom scenarios and decision-making — putting research into practice.

We look forward to working with these outstanding educators this summer!

Meet Our New Fellow, Melissa Stopa

Melissa Stopa

Q: How long have you been teaching?

A: The 2017-2018 school year will be my 25th year of teaching.

Q: What’s your favorite part of teaching?

A: I love working with teachers to design and implement lessons that engage and empower students.

Q: How do you use edtech and digital tools to enhance learning?

A: My favorite use of edtech allows students and teachers share their work with a wider audience. I watched a video many years ago, by Kevin Honeycutt, I Need My Teachers to Learn. One of the most memorable lines in the video for me is … “because an audience of one is absurd”. Students want a wider audience for their work beyond their teacher, to give it purpose and power. Therefore, I do focus on creation versus consumption edtech tools with the teachers I support. However, I do believe that edtech tools that allow students to engage in self-paced learning with constant, sustaining feedback are also powerful.

Q: Who inspires you?

A: My favorite ed tech guru is Alan November. I heard him speak one year at ISTE. He is thoughtful and I believe his insights are powerful.

Q: What are you most looking forward to as a Lea(R)n Fellow?

A: I am excited to participate in a different side of the edtech conversation. I have knowledge as an educator and researcher, but little experience in the development and refining of edtech tool usage