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Leah Lechleiter-Luke
2011 Alumni Classroom Fellow
Mauston, WI


Photo of Leah Lechleiter-Luke, Classroom Fellow

Bio/Overview: Lechleiter-Luke is currently employed as a high school Spanish and English teacher in Mauston, Wisconsin. Teaching for twenty years in small, rural school districts has offered Lechleiter-Luke many opportunities to roll up her shirt sleeves and affect change that has an immediate impact on whole populations of students. Throughout her career Lechleiter-Luke has taken advantage of her dual certification in English and Spanish and has taught children in grades K-12 and adult education. Over the years she has also taught credit and non-credit courses to adults enrolled at the local technical college.  In the summer she teaches an exploratory Spanish course to children in grades K -12 and adult education.  In January 2013, Wisconsin State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers invited Lechleiter-Luke to form and facilitate a teacher advisory council. The council meets three times a year with the State Superintendent and his staff to offer feedback on education policy and state-wide programming.

Educational Values/Philosophy: Kaizen, the word taped to the front of Lechleiter-Luke’s computer, means continuous improvement through ongoing change.  Kaizen captures the essence of Lechleiter-Luke’s personal and educational philosophies.  She holds all of her students to high standards and expects to see growth in each individual before they leave her classroom. Witnessing their growth motivates Lechleiter-Luke to improve her own practices.

Achievements:

  • Facilitator Wisconsin Teachers of the Year Council
  • President-elect  Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance
  • 2012 University Wisconsin-Oshkosh Distinguished Alumni
  • 2011 Classroom Teaching Ambassador Fellow U.S. Department of Education
  • 2010 Wisconsin Teacher of the Year
  • 2009-2010 Wisconsin High School Teacher of the Year
  • 2009 Herb Kohl Educational Foundation Fellow
  • 2006 Wisconsin-Upper Michigan Key Club Advisor of the Year
 

Leadership Experience: Lechleiter-Luke has served as an advisor of a number of extra-curricular activities including, forensics, Academic Decathlon, National Honor Society, Student Council, Spanish Club, Link Crew (a peer mentoring program) and an award winning Key Club.   In addition to being a home club advisor, Lechleiter-Luke also served as regional advisor for Southwestern Wisconsin.  Aside from extra-curricular involvement, her latest endeavor is co-founding and sitting on the governance council of the first public charter school in her school district. iLEAD Charter School focuses on developing leadership and entrepreneurial skills through project-based, Common Core State Standards driven curriculum. As a Teacher Ambassador Fellow, Lechleiter-Luke convened listening sessions for the Department of Education across Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois, facilitated  presentations at a national Labor Management Conference, assisted with the first-ever Race to the Top Convening in Washington D.C., and wrote blog posts for the DoED. She also presented Blue Ribbon Schools Awards and accompanied senior DoED staff members as they toured K-12 school facilities and listened to presentations about wrap around services, such as United Way. Her favorite TAF assignment was participating in Secretary Duncan’s rural tour of Wisconsin and Iowa in the spring. In addition to extra-curricular involvement, Lechleiter co-founded and served on the governance council of the first public charter school in her school district and is a long-standing member of her LEA leadership team. She is currently president-elect of the Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance. As a Teaching Ambassador Fellow, Lechleiter-Luke convened roundtable discussions across Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois, facilitated presentations at a national Labor Management Conference, assisted with the first-ever Race to the Top Convening in Washington D.C., and lead sessions at the DoED Teacher-Leader Summit. She also accompanied senior DoED staff members as they toured K-12 school facilities and listened to presentations about the efforts of wrap around services, such as the Boys and Girls Club, in addressing the achievement gap. Her favorite TAF assignment was helping to plan and participating in Secretary Duncan’s rural tour of Wisconsin and Iowa in Spring 2012.

Affiliations: Wisconsin Education Association Council, Wisconsin Association for Language Teachers, Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance, and National Network of  State Teachers of the Year

Education: Lechleiter-Luke earned a Bachelor’s Degree from University Wisconsin-Oshkosh in 1992, and she was recently bestowed the 2012 Distinguished Alumni Award. She earned a Master’s Degree in Secondary Education from Viterbo University in LaCrosse, Wisconsin in 2002.  She is working towards a Ph.D. in Education with an emphasis in Leadership, Policy and Change from Walden University.

Areas of Interest/Expertise:

  • Rural Education
  • Community collaboration
  • Language instruction
  • Charter schools
  • Labor Relations

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Last Modified: 09/23/2013