(NEW YORK, NEW YORK, February 7th 2019): In January 2019, Schools That Can appointed a new Executive Director of Schools That Can New York City, Arana Shapiro. Shapiro will provide leadership, vision, and day-to-day management of STC programming and fundraising in the New York region, including piloting an STC Career Skills program to help high schools in New York City build career pathway programs that prepare students to thrive in viable postsecondary pathways.

Shapiro brings more than fifteen years of experience working with New York City schools to STC. “We are thrilled to have Arana join the Schools That Can team. She deeply understands the necessity to “reimagine education” for today’s students, and she brings a collaborative and empathetic approach to this work,” says Casey Lamb, Chief Operating Officer of Schools That Can.

Previously, Shapiro served as Executive Director of the Institute of Play, a nonprofit that provides professional development and consulting services to schools and organizations interested in bringing game-based learning to their classrooms. Among her accomplishments in this role, Shapiro helped launch and lead Quest to Learn, a district 6-12 school in Chelsea.

Shapiro also has hands-on experience in the classroom. Her career began as an early elementary classroom teacher in California. She then relocated to New York, where she became a founding faculty member at The School at Columbia University. Later, she transitioned to work as an educational technologist, teacher mentor, and curriculum developer.

“I am inspired by the mission of Schools That Can and am excited to work hand in hand with the STC NYC staff and network schools to reimagine what real world learning and postsecondary pathways can look like for our students,” Shapiro says.

Shapiro holds an M.A. in Education from Pepperdine University and an Ed.M in Leadership for Educational Change from Bank Street College of Education. She is a published author, documenting the design and implementation of Quest to Learn in Quest to Learn: Developing the School for Digital Kids, published by MIT Press. Similarly, Shapiro is a presenter on student-driven learning at national and international conferences.

STC NYC supports educators and students from across roughly thirty district, charter, and independent schools. The region is pioneering work in hands-on STEAM and real-world learning through our STC Maker Fellows and Maker Partnership Program. Additionally, STC NYC works with teachers through our Professional Learning Groups, and engages students through our Bridging the e2e Gap program and the Design Day Challenge. Schools That Can New York City is part of Schools That Can, a national network currently reaching more than 190 schools across 15 cities, serving more than 75,000 students, 81% of whom are eligible for free/reduced price lunch.

About Schools That Can

Since starting with a small cluster of schools in 2005, Schools That Can (STC) has grown into the country’s largest cross-sector network of urban schools serving low-income communities. The network currently reaches more than 190 schools across 15 cities, serving more than 75,000 students. STC works with school leaders, teachers and students to reimagine education through real-world learning that closes the opportunity and skills gap. Innovative approaches fill a much-needed void to better prepare students for a rapidly changing future. By connecting leaders to powerful practices and models, developing teachers and engaging students, STC is poised to make an important difference in the lives of American youth.