On October 17, 2013, Citizen Schools Texas hosted the Grantmakers for Education Annual Conference at Patrick Henry Middle School. Founded in 1995, Grantmakers for Education is a membership organization of more than 280 private and public philanthropies working to improve outcomes and expand opportunities for learners across the education spectrum, from early learning through postsecondary and workforce development.
As a part of the three day conference, grantmakers traveled throughout Houston to experience education innovation in action, making visits to the Collaborative for Children, KIPP, the University of Houston, the Houston Museum of Natural Science, an Apollo 20 campus, and to the Parent Institute for Quality Education (PIQE).
30 grant making organizations converged on Citizen Schools’ flagship campus for a day of interactive learning and observations. Citizen Schools Texas ED, Todd Litton, greeted the guests with an introduction to our program. Patrick Henry Principal Sarah Stafford (Teach for America CM ’07) gave a talk and then fielded questions from the group. A constituent panel, composed of Robert Kellermann (7th grader, alumnus of Citizen Schools ELT program); Anthony Rondina (math teacher at Patrick Henry Middle School); and Alan Watkins (Citizen Teacher and Community Development Officer, Wells Fargo) each spoke in turn and hosted a Q& A session. Pat Kirby, COO, Citizen Schools then hosted a policy discussion, along with Todd Litton. Afterward, the group split into small groups, which were taken around the school to observe three apprenticeships each. Group leaders included Todd Litton; Pat Kirby; Jeremy Tarbutton, Patrick Henry Campus Director, Citizen Schools – Texas; Yoni Samuel-Siegel, Managing Director of Program, Citizen Schools – Texas; Joel Horwich, Director of Grant Strategy and Writing, Citizen Schools; and Salonee Shah, Patrick Henry Deputy Campus Director, Citizen Schools – Texas.