Bio/Overview: Clarke teaches Social Studies at Kent-Meridan High School in Kent, WA. Clarke’s passion for equity and social justice has led her circuitously to her current role as a Washington Fellow. She came to teaching after six years at Rutgers University, where she studied gender and public policy and worked at the Center for Women’s Global Leadership (CWGL). At the CWGL, Clarke fostered women’s leadership and worked to advance women’s human rights at the United Nations. In 2003, she continued her work for equity and justice by becoming a teacher with the support of the NYC Teaching Fellow program. She taught Social Studies at Edward R. Murrow High School in Brooklyn, NY while completing her Master’s in Education. In 2006, she moved to Washington State, where she currently lives and teaches.
Educational Values/Philosophy: Clarke entered teaching because she believes that all students deserve a rigorous and challenging curriculum worthy of their time and effort. She is committed to helping disadvantaged students gain access to the information, resources, and skills they need to live lives of dignity. She believes our schools should foster intellectual growth, empathy, problem-solving skills, decision-making skills, responsibility, creativity, and initiative. As a Social Studies teacher, Clarke hopes that students can learn how to engage in civil civic discourse. To that end, she believes that young people should be empowered to think critically and holistically while relating their studies to real life issues. Clarke also seeks to help students become more internationally minded by teaching American History in a global perspective; that is, by asking students to see the United States as but one actor in a complicated world.
Achievements: Clarke is a National Board Certified Teacher. In 2011, she was honored as the World Affairs Council 2011 World Educator and was chosen to be a World Affairs Council Fellow based on her work to promote and improve international education. She received a service learning award and a teaching award from Americorps in 2005, and was selected as the Advisor of the Year by the Council for Unity in 2006. Clarke has been nominated for Teacher of the Year several times and has received grants from the New York City Office of Instructional Technology as well as PBS Thirteen/WNET in New York City. She has been invited to various lectures and workshops concerning women’s rights and education, and contributed to a book entitled Holding onto the Promise: Women’s Human Rights and The Beijing +5 Review.
Leadership Experience: Clarke has held a variety of leadership positions in the Kent School District, including, among others, serving on the Superintendent Professional Learning Community, assisting with curriculum development, and acting as a Social Studies curricular leader. She is a member of the board for the Washington State Council for the Social Studies and is local arrangements co-chair for the 2012 National Council for the Social Studies conference, to be held in Seattle in October 2012. Clarke also served as a program associate for the Center for Women’s Global Leadership, where she coordinated the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign from 2001-2003 and advocated for women’s rights in national and international forums.
Affiliations: Washington New Millennium Initiative: Center for Teacher Quality, World Affairs Council, National Council for the Social Studies, Washington State Council for the Social Studies.
Education: Clarke received her Bachelor’s Degree in History and Social Science from Providence College, and went on to receive a Master’s of the Arts in Women’s Studies from Rutgers University. She then went on to earn a second Master’s degree in Adolescent Education and Social Studies from the Brooklyn College of CUNY.
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