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One Dade: 5 Corps Members And Alumni Going Over And Beyond

Give Miami Day is Thursday, 11/16 ! Get to know the impact of your investment. Read about 5 Teach For America Miami-Dade corps members and alumni who are going over any beyond to provide educational equity to ALL students in Miami-Dade.

Group Of Pictures Of TFA Teachers in Miami-Dade

November 7, 2017


For the past 15 years, our network of Teach For America Leaders has been working towards one day when all children in Miami-Dade will have the opportunity to attain an excellent education. Today, we have over 675 Leaders - Corps Members & Alumni - Fighting for Educational Equity in the Miami community. Our 160 first and second year corps members are currently teaching over 10,000 students in 35 schools across Miami-Dade. In addition, our corps is diverse – with 70% identifying as persons of color – and highly selective with just 15% of all applicants for Teach For America’s 2017 corps admitted. Our alumni network in South Florida is currently over 525 and growing - contributing towards educational equity from classrooms, schools, and every sector that shapes the broader systems in which schools operate. Meet 5 of these individuals below who are going over and beyond to use their personal gifts and passions to bring educational equity to all students in Miami-Dade!

5 Corps Members & Alumni Going Over & Beyond for Educational Equity

Eric Steen

Eric Steen, Miami-Dade ‘15 Alum

Going Over & Beyond by... Inventing a guidance counselor app to help more kids stay on track.

"TFA has provided me opportunities to learn how to create change both inside & outside of the classroom."

After being exposed to Teach For America Miami-Dade’s Start Up Weekend, a partnership with Venture Hive for aspiring entrepreneurs to pitch innovative ideas around educational inequity, Eric created “My Student Blueprint”, an app that addresses the gaps between guidance counselors and students, which he witnessed as a TFA corps member while teaching in Miami-Dade Public Schools. Now, a 10th grade English Teacher at Miami Central High School AND app inventor, Eric is currently testing the app with his own students, and hopes it will help bring educational equity to ALL students across the United States. Stay tuned to our blog updates to learn more about our newest alumni entrepreneurial program, a fellowship partnership with Venture Hive, that will propel even more alums into developing innovative ideas around education.

Yannell Selman

Yannell Selman, Bay Area ‘12 Alum

Going Over & Beyond by... Developing a Nonprofit and TFA Fellowship that empowers teachers to take action in educational policy reform.

"Teach for America is about so much more than your first two years of teaching--it's about finding your place in the fight for educational equity. The work I do through P.S. 305 allows me to leverage my unique strengths and experiences to support students, families, and schools in Miami, and it all started with TFA."

After teaching in the Bay Area as a TFA corps member, Yannell has returned to her hometown of Miami to create PS305, a non-profit that informs, organizes and empowers leaders to fight for a rigorous system of quality, choice, and accountability across all of Miami’s schools. Through PS305, Yannell has recently launched a new ‘Teacher Policy Fellowship’ for Miami-Dade alumni interested in using policy to impact educational equity in Miami-Dade County Public Schools. Stay tuned to our blog to follow highlights from this fellowship and its participants as it unfolds.

Jamyah Cox, 2016 TFA Miami-Dade Corps Member

Going Over & Beyond by...making it a point to invest in and get to know her students outside of the classroom

“When they say it takes a village to raise a child, it really does, and I am glad I get to be a part of each of my student's communities. Because I was able to be present for my students, they were able to be present and work hard when they entered my classroom.” 

In her second year teaching at North Miami Middle School, Jamyah has led her students to 1.5 years of growth and achieved the highest growth of 8th grade pre-algebra students in the school. Ms. Cox believes that as a teacher she is a critical part of the support community her students need for success. Not only did Ms. Cox lead her students (who had amongst the lowest state test performance the previous year) to the highest learning gains for students in this group, she also made it a point to invest in who they are outside of the classroom. From theatrical plays, to football and basketball games, dance recitals, and birthday parties, Ms. Cox was there supporting her students and forming a network with other influential people in their lives.

Henry Bareiss

Henry Bareiss, 2016 TFA Miami-Dade Corps Member

Going Over & Beyond by... taking on multiple leadership roles within his school and community, such as managing a college program and coaching soccer

"By working with my students outside of the classroom, I have been able to form relationships that allow me to guide my students towards success. My students are highly capable with experiences that have pushed them to mature well beyond their age. The work I have done has allowed me to lay the ground work for my students to continue their journey towards success both in and outside the classroom.”

In his second year teaching at South Dade Senior High School, Henry has led his students to average over 1.5 years of growth. The prior year, 100% of his students received failing scores on their Algebra 1 End of Course Exam. In 2016-2017, 23% of Mr. Bareiss’ 180 students received passing scores on their Geometry End of Course Exam and 66% of the lowest 25% of students grew more than 1.5 years. In addition to teaching, Mr. Bariess has taken on multiple leadership roles within his school and community to expand students’ opportunities to pursue their passions and access college. He is the College Program Manager with Achieve Miami through which, he recruited 30 high school students from South Dade to participate in a 5-week summer college prep program and yearlong Saturday program that he leads. These students engage in both college readiness courses that Mr. Bareiss teaches, and gain leadership skills through mentoring elementary students. Mr. Bareiss is also the assistant Men’s Soccer Coach at his school. This role allows him engage with the community and form relationships with students and their influencers. He uses this role to help student athletes apply and succeed in college.

Beatriz Guevara

Beatriz Guevara, 2017 TFA Miami-Dade Corps Member

Going Over & Beyond by...leading a multicultural committee at her school, as well as offering tutoring before and after school for low performing students.

"A few of my students started staying after school to work on math. One of my lowest performing students, who started in the red group, has now moved up to the green group! I know it's because of our tutoring."

Beatriz Guevara is a first-year corps member teaching 3rd Grade Math & Science at Lorah Park Elementary School. As a first-year teacher in a city as diverse as Miami, she recognized many different cultures of students at her school. Hoping to find a way to make students feel aware and a part of a their school's diverse community, she joined the school's multicultural committee to develop events throughout the year that could highlight and celebrate our differences. For Hispanic Heritage Month, she and her committee planned an all-school assembly featuring performance segments led by Spanish teachers. In addition, Ms. Guevara offers support in the mornings and after school for students struggling in her math class. Since making herself available for one-on-one tutoring, she has noticed her lowest performing students, who started in the "red group" in math class, have now moved up to the "green" group. This academic growth, increase in student participation and overall class engagement is because of Ms. Guevara's tutoring. Moreover, she has built deeper, more authentic connections with her students, by learning more about their home lives and connecting with their unique interests.

Support more leaders going over and beyond for educational equity by investing in Teach For America - Miami-Dade on Give Miami Day, Thursday, November 16th. Visit this link when it goes live on 11/16 at midnight!