RESCHOOL is a Colorado-based nonprofit organization that believes that learning happens everywhere. When young people experience a variety of opportunities that they drive, they THRIVE. We know inequities exist in our educational system both in and outside of schools. We work alongside a variety of people to address these inequities so all young people have the resources to access the learning experiences they choose.
RESCHOOL started as an initiative of the Donnell-Kay Foundation in 2013 before becoming a nonprofit in 2018.
All young people have full access to communities, opportunities, and resources to live the lives they want to lead.
Create an equitable education system where learning that happens everywhere is fully accessible to all young people.
We intentionally align our resources in equitable ways to support learning opportunities for young people and their families.
We invest in people, ideas, and growth experiences driven by communities.
We aim to serve as trusted advocates who partner with communities to disrupt an outdated and inequitable education system.
We embrace designing learning systems so they can be flexible and adapt to our ever-changing world.
We connect with others to create a healthy learning ecosystem that resources and values all people and their experiences.
How Does RESCHOOL Do Its Work?
Young people, families, learning providers and communities are best suited to design and create solutions for the systems that seek to serve them. RESCHOOL partners with diverse groups to problem solve unmet needs in young people’s learning. We then co-create potential solutions and thoughtfully pilot those solutions alongside our community to learn if they meet the collective needs.
Essential to being people-centered is the ability to adapt potential solutions based on what we’re learning. We reflect frequently and adjust course based on what our partners are experiencing. To guide us in this evolutionary work, RESCHOOL uses processes and tools within Design Lab.
Authentic, equitable systems change will not occur from simply replicating an idea RESCHOOL has designed. Context matters. Local voices and partnerships are critical. That’s why RESCHOOL:
- Works closely with families and community-based organizations to understand local contexts and surface their needs and desires.
- Co-designs new solutions with our partners and invests in them and their ideas.
- Incorporates a research agenda in all of our pursuits to learn and adapt as needed
- Grows concepts that demonstrate impact and identifies how to inspire and resource others to use these ideas in their own contexts.
Just as we seek to help create an education system that is creative, adaptive, self-correcting, and decentralized, we seek to do the same as an organization. It is important to us to align how RESCHOOL operates internally with the world we hope to see externally. Our vision for both systems is inspired more by natural, living systems than by industrial, mechanistic models.
Director of Strategic Initiatives & Impact
Director of Project Development & Operations
Director of Family & Community Partnerships
Research & Design Fellow
In 2013, Amy co-founded RESCHOOL with Tony Lewis as a project of the DK Foundation. She became the organization’s Executive Director in 2018 when RESCHOOL launched as an independent 501c3. Amy strives to create an organization that operates internally in ways that align with the world we are working with our partners to create externally, as reflected in our mission, vision, and values.
Prior to RESCHOOL, Amy was Associate Commissioner at the Colorado Department of Education where she created and led the Division of Innovation, Choice, and Engagement. Her work there resulted in the creation of a statewide vision and strategy to personalize learning and ignite the unique potential of each student through Expanded Learning Opportunities.
Before her time at CDE, Amy had her first stint with the Donnell-Kay Foundation as the Director of Strategic Partnerships where she launched the Foundation’s work on blended learning. She also worked as an education policy and school finance researcher and analyst at APA Consulting and led new school development efforts for the Colorado League of Charter Schools.
Amy is a founder of The Odyssey School, a Denver charter school started in 1998 where both her children attended and she served for many years on the board of directors. She currently serves as Vice-Chair of the Aurora Institute’s Board of Directors. Amy holds a Ph.D. and M.Ed. from the University of Colorado and a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin
An Atlanta native, Selamawit moved to Denver after teaching high school English as a Metro Atlanta Teach for America Corps Member. During her time in the classroom, Selamawit designed her school’s African American Studies and SAT Prep courses and spearheaded a community forum tasked to explore ways to align social issues with state standards. Most recently, Selamawit worked on the Academic Product and Operations team at the Denver-based Guild Education. In this role, Selamawit focused on innovative instructional design and course enrollment processes. She believes all students deserve to be empowered to be their own conscious advocates for themselves and their communities.
Jess leads RESCHOOL’s work to offer tools and experiences that anchor efforts to improve education systems in the experiences and ideas of young people and communities. She has been deeply involved in the newest version of REVOLVE and Design Lab since their development. As concepts evolve at RESCHOOL, Jess plays a key role in developing and implementing outreach strategies and establishing the infrastructure and processes to support the work. She is the main point of contact for RESCHOOL’s grants and operations.
Prior to joining RESCHOOL, Jess worked at the Colorado Department of Education in multiple roles. She was a grant manager for federally and state-funded dollars supporting adult education programs, worked with innovation and charter schools, and worked in the Commissioner’s Office and the High School Equivalency Testing Office. Prior to CDE, Jess worked with a non-profit providing high school equivalency testing and skills coaching, primarily to youth and adults who were incarcerated.
Jess graduated from Colorado State University with a B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies and a Minor in Business. She completed a Systems Impact Institute Fellowship through Climb Higher Colorado and serves on her neighborhood elementary school’s School Accountability Committee where her daughter attends. Jess gets a lot of joy from being a mom to two awesome young kids who already navigate the world in their own unique ways.
Paola leads and coordinates the Learner Advocate Network (LAN) that supports families as they navigate learning for their children. Paola also co-leads the Learning Community Initiatives Project. She focuses on authentic partnership with families, community and family-facing organizations. Paola is interested in supporting and broadening the learning landscape for providers and families.
In addition to being a Director of Family and Community Partnerships with the RESCHOOL team, Paola serves on the board for the Colorado Soccer Foundation and Mountain Mamas. She supports Museo de las Américas on its Strategy Committee, Park Hill for Equity for Education Shared Resources Task Force, and completed the Systems Impact Institute Fellowship through Climb Higher Colorado. Paola has served on the Teach for America Alumni Advisory Board and the Denver Public Schools Application Review Team. She is also a founding board member of Denver Discovery School. Paola taught in a variety of bilingual school settings in East Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Denver and remains a strong advocate of bilingual education. She received her BA in Art History from the University of Notre Dame and a Masters in Education with a focus on Literacy and Language Acquisition from San Francisco State University.
Paola is committed to advocating for and creating diverse learner-centered educational environments that are supportive of students and families, who have been systematically marginalized. She believes that students and families thrive and continue to develop their unique voice in diverse settings that are carefully developed to counter systemic biases.
Monica manages the DISCOVER learning resource and builds relationships with local learning providers so it is easier for all families to explore learning opportunities available to their children when they are not in school. She is RESCHOOL’s lead on administrative tasks across projects, and partners with other members of the team to create resources for families and support general communications efforts.
Prior to joining RESCHOOL, Monica worked for Girls Incorporated of Metro Denver as the founder of their social enterprise business and manager of their coffee shop and entrepreneurial programming for teens. As their former Director of Programs, Monica was instrumental in creating programming for over 2,000 girls each year across the Denver-Metro Area. Monica is also a microbusiness owner and member of the RISE Westwood Collective in the Westwood neighborhood in Denver.
A Colorado native, Monica studied Psychology and Chicano and Women’s Studies at CSU-Pueblo. Having worked in the youth development field for many years, she is committed to creating communities of support and learning opportunities for Colorado students.
Amanda West serves as the Research and Design Fellow for RESCHOOL Colorado. She is a practicing sociologist skilled in data collection and analysis. Born and raised in Denver, she is very community oriented, and enjoys spending time with her longtime friends who also work in the community. After studying at Colorado State University, Amanda worked at Denver Public Schools, first as the Regional Community Engagement Partner for Northeast Denver, and then as a Shared Campus Manager. In her free time, Amanda enjoys spending time with her nieces and nephews, and traveling.
Sarah Johnson splits her time between the DK Foundation and RESCHOOL and is supporting RESCHOOL with accounting and operations. Sarah started her career as an El Pomar Foundation fellow. With a desire to create change in the educational system, she joined the Inner-City Teaching Corps in Chicago. Sarah has spent the last 13 years teaching children ranging from toddler to middle school. Most recently she worked to receive her Montessori accreditation and opened Denver’s flagship Wildflower school. She enjoys traveling the world with her family and spending time in nature.
Board of Directors
Tony Lewis, Chair
Amy Anderson, Ex-Officio
Learn more about the concepts behind the services and tools RESCHOOL provides.
- June 9, 2016
Personalized Learning in the Context of a Person Not a School
- June 2, 2019
The 74: Across the Country, Communities are Creating New Ways for Students to Learn-and Empowering Them to Succeed
- May 31, 2020
Colorado Sun: Opinion Colorado Must Invest in Diverse, Out-of-School Programs to Help Address Equity Gaps