Better Together 2021

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Thank you to all who attended our 2021 Better Together Event! Congratulations to our raffle winners, Jane Kent ($25 Amazon gift card) and Kelley Hoogeboom (50% off Future MassCUE Event)

How do we prepare for the new school year given the successes and challenges of 2020-2021?

The Covid-19 pandemic has forced educators, students and families to rethink core ideas about what school is, what teaching and learning look like, and what it means to build and maintain strong relationships. There have been many challenges, but also successes. This year’s “Better Together” back-to-school online event will focus on how we can build on what we have experienced and learned over the past year as we prepare for the new school year. 

The sessions will address re-opening strategies, engaging your community in open dialogue, culturally responsive education, trauma-informed care in school settings, self-care for educators, and supporting teachers in the blended environment.  

The live online event will be held on August 19, 2021 from 4:00-6:30pm. The week prior to the event, attendees will be given access to recorded presentations (about 30 minutes) by all six of our Featured Speakers on their respective topic. Then on the day of the online event, each Featured Speaker will host a live “fireside chat” to promote informational conversation among the attendees based on their recorded presentation. This will maximize our interactive learning time together.  

Cost: $35.00 per participant


Dr. Nicole Christian-Brathwaite

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Dr. Nicole Christian-Brathwaite, MD is a Board Certified Child, Adolescent and Adult Psychiatrist. She is Founder and CEO of Well Minds Psychiatry and Consulting Company, PLLC. She is Senior Vice President and Medical Director for Scheduled Care and Athome for Array Behavioral Care, the leading and largest telepsychiatry service provider in the US. Dr .Christian-Brathwaite is a member of the Board of Directors of The New England Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Families for Depression Awareness.


Michael B. Horn

image Michael B. HornMichael Horn speaks and writes about the future of education and works with a portfolio of education organizations to create a world in which all individuals can build their passions and fulfill their potential. He is the author of many books, including Choosing College, and Goodnight Box, a children’s story. Michael is a senior strategist at Guild Education, which partners with leading employers and organizations to help offer education and upskilling opportunities to America’s workforce. He is also the co-founder of and a distinguished fellow at the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation, a non-profit think tank. Michael is the author and coauthor of multiple books, white papers, and articles on education, including the award-winning book Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns and the Amazon-bestseller Blended: Using Disruptive Innovation to Improve Schools. He serves on the board and advisory boards of a range of education organizations, including the Clayton Christensen Institute, the Robin Hood Learning+Tech Fund, and the LearnLaunch Institute. He also serves as an executive editor at Education Next and is a venture partner at NextGen Venture Partners. Michael was selected as a 2014 Eisenhower Fellow to study innovation in education in Vietnam and Korea, and Tech&Learning magazine named him to its list of the 100 most important people in the creation and advancement of the use of technology in education. Michael holds a BA in history from Yale University and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.

Roshni Lakhi

image Roshni LakhiRoshni Lakhi is a Partner at The Learning Accelerator. She is currently helping to lead the organization’s COVID-19 response by partnering with healthcare experts and supporting schools to minimize risk and maximize student learning. Prior to joining TLA, Roshni was a Program Manager at the Highlander Institute, leading the organization’s operations in New York. Her role focused on the development and dissemination of personalized learning best practices in urban districts through teacher coaching. She launched the SyraFuse Fellowship, a teacher leadership development program in the Syracuse City School District, and EdTechRI, a community initiative to foster partnerships between educators and entrepreneurs through meetups and pilots. She also brought the first Startup Weekend Education and Girls Who Code to Rhode Island.

Roshni taught middle school math in Providence, RI for several years while piloting blended learning at her school. Roshni was named a PBS Digital Innovator in 2014, a CoSN NextGen Leader in 2016, and an ISTE Ignite Young Educator in 2018. She currently lives in New York with her husband and son.

Kyrk Morris

image Kyrk MorrisKyrk Morris was raised in Cambridge, MA, and is the Founding Director of Citizens of the World, Inc., a non-profit agency which provides supplemental education and social services for youth and families. He attended Cambridge Public Schools and graduated from Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School prior to attending Howard University, majoring in the Administration of Justice, with a minor in Psychology. Kyrk has worked for the Massachusetts Department of Social Services’ Mental Health Service Program for Youth (MHSPY), as a mentor. He was a youth worker and supervisor for the City of Cambridge Department of Human Service Programs. He has also served as a Child Abuse Victim Advocate and as a Bailiff with the City of Atlanta Municipal Court. Kyrk began his teaching career with court-adjudicated youth, as a Special Educator, within residential and school settings in Washington, D.C. and has taught and counseled youth in shelters, foster care and detention centers in D.C and Northern Virginia. Kyrk also spent several years working for the City of Fairfax, VA, Parks and Recreation Department within Summer Camp and Teen Center programs. Kyrk worked with the Providence After School Alliance, as a Coordinator, where he assisted in creating and cultivating a city-wide system of out of school time opportunities for middle school students, in the North End of Providence, RI. For the past ten years he has been working in education and recreation settings with youth at the Shady Hill, Vassal Lane Upper, Cambridgeport and Tobin Montessori schools in Cambridge. Kyrk is currently a Restorative Justice Specialist with Suffolk University’s Center for Restorative Justice, where he assists schools and districts strategically plan and implement Restorative Justice practices.

Rick Rogers

image Rick RogersRick Rogers is passionate about the principalship and believes in the power of reflective practice. He brings over 35 years of experience in public education as a teacher and a principal in urban and suburban settings – last year serving as an interim principal in Malden. His current work focuses on supporting principals and leadership teams as a leadership coach and consultant. He is the program coordinator and a lead facilitator for the Soul of Leadership: Courage, Presence & Integrity, a leadership renewal program. He has also been a facilitator for the National Institute of School Leadership and an adjunct instructor at UMass Lowell.



GBH Panel

Kim Gonzálezimage Kim Gonzalez

Kim González has worked as a STEM curriculum creator and educator in formal and informal settings around the world. She is currently the Content Manager for Design Squad Latinx: a GBH Education initiative working for and with middle school youth to create a culturally responsive, strengths-based engineering program.



April Bo Wang

image April Bo WangDr. April Bo Wang believes in the power of storytelling to create change. At WGBH, the largest producer and contributor of educational media to PBS, she develops strategy and new concepts in the Education Department. In this capacity, she is dedicated to diversifying the portfolio of educational media that WGBH offers children, teachers, and families—both in terms of who is designing and writing curricula, as well as whose stories are told, whose histories and knowledge are represented, and who is shown on screens.

Prior to WGBH, April was the Education Director at 826 Boston, a youth writing and publishing nonprofit organization where she oversaw programming for almost 4,000 students. April led the Equity Task Force and principal professional development at Santa Fe Public Schools,

focused on building more inclusive and engaging school cultures. April began her career in education as an eleventh grade English teacher in the Arkansas Delta. Her favorite book to teach was Richard Wright’s Black Boy. She holds a B.A. in history and literature from Harvard College and a doctorate in education leadership from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Robbie Smith-Young

Robbie has fifteen years of experience in education and administration with Clinton Public Schools and Jackson Public Schoolsimage Robbie Smith in Central Mississippi and currently serves as the Secondary MTSS Math Coach for Kirksey Middle School. She received her master’s degree in Secondary Education, and also holds an Educational Specialist Degree in Education Administration K-12. Robbie is currently working on her Ph.D. in Education Administration with concentration in Higher Education. The entirety of her career has been spent in teaching and coaching middle school math education grades 6 to Algebra I, with coaching experience to Algebra III. Her assessment experience is heavily rooted in state and district data with learning objective scaffolding, attributable to the data-driven nature of the lessons, remediations and enrichments. Her years of experience with teaching students in both the rural and urban settings has enabled her to see the great benefits of culturally responsive teaching.


Participant Check in 3:45 – 4:00 PM
Welcome 4:00 – 4:15 PM
Fireside Chat Session I 4:20 – 5:05 PM
Fireside Chat Session II 5:10 – 5:55 PM
Cocktail Hour & Sharing 6:00 – 6:30 PM

Fireside chats with our featured speakers will be based on prerecorded sessions and held live virtually on August 19th! Visit this link for additional details on the topics below.

  • The Culturally Responsive Classroom: From Theory to Practice with the GBH Panel
  • Disruption by Design with Michael B. Horn
  • Lessons Learned from the Pandemic: How Do We Safely and Effectively Return to School? with Roshni Lakhi
  • Engaging your Community for Open Dialogue with Kyrk Morris
  • Sustaining Educators with Courage, Presence and Integrity with Rick Rogers
  • Trauma informed care in an Educational Setting with Dr. Nicole Christian-Brathwaite, MD



Registration closes August 18th at 4 PM



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We are looking for six sponsors for this one-day event at $450 each. Sponsorships are available on a first- come, first-serve basis. Sponsorship includes:

  • Logo on MassCUE event page, as well as event platform
  • Vendor pre-recorded workshop (up to 30 minutes) that focuses on how product can support teaching and learning to be placed on the Featured Speaker On-Demand Platform

Expected Demographics

We expect 140 educators (Administrators, Integration Specialists, Classroom Teachers, Content Coordinators, etc.) for this event.

2020 Event Infographic

Please contact Shelley Chamberlain, Executive Director of MassCUE, for more information.

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2021-08-19 15:45 2021-08-19 18:30 America/New_York Better Together 2021

      Thank you to all who attended our 2021 Better Together Event! Congratulations to our raffle winners, Jane Kent ($25 Amazon gift card) and Kelley Hoogeboom (50% off Future MassCUE Event) How do we prepare for the new school year given the successes and challenges of 2020-2021? The Covid-19 pandemic has forced educators, […]

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