We envision a world where all underserved students use the power of literacy to realize their potential for self-determination.
Our Mission is to equip our students with skills and strategies that accelerate a love for literacy, equitable learning, and lifelong achievement.
As a partner prepared to listen actively, assess collaboratively, facilitate thoughtfully, and empower for sustainability, we come to each student, classroom, school, and district.
A team of former classroom teachers and school administrators, we work with students, classroom leaders, schools, and districts to:
articulate a philosophy of integrated social-emotional competence and academic instruction
establish systems and structures to integrate social-emotional learning with academic instruction
identify content for SEL instruction
determine supports necessary for sustainability
In consultation with district and school leaders, we begin with a comprehensive needs assessment and culminate with an implementation plan for accelerated student achievement and improved social-emotional competence. We also offer integrated, high-impact, small-group tutoring for accelerated academic achievement. Please contact us for more information about setting up tutoring services.
We want to see students build social-emotional competence while engaging in rigorous academic challenges that boost their sense of self and belonging in their academic community.
We want to see all students achieve at the meets or exceeds level on their benchmarks.
We want to see academic communities enact systems and structures that embody the principles of an integrated SEL framework. An SEL framework that sustains the ever-growing social and emotional competence of students, school personnel, and educators for academic achievement.
We believe all students and educators thrive in a safe and supportive learning environment.
We believe social and emotional competence is essential for rigorous, meaningful academic engagement and that academic achievement is essential to well being.
We believe academic achievement flourishes when social and emotional learning is an integrated component of learning.
We believe the systems and structures of an organization enact its beliefs and values.
Gwyn Jolliff-Blake has worked in the field of education for over 25 years, with the majority of her time as a general education classroom teacher in a variety of settings providing in-person and remote instruction.
After earning a masters degree in reading instruction, she worked with novice and veteran teachers informally as a colleague and formally as an instructional coach to build their confidence, strategize the management of multiple demands, and problem solve the myriad of challenges teachers face. As a professional development designer and literacy specialist at Chicago Public Schools, she led professional development workshops for teachers in impactful instruction, and for administrators on the implementation of the Framework for Teaching and district wide literacy initiatives.
With specialized training in integrated curriculum design and thinking processes, Gwyn’s passion is helping students achieve their full potential, working with teachers and administrators to find clarity and common ground by exploring diverse perspectives, applying new insights to the work of supporting students’ learning and achievement. Colleagues appreciate her sense of calm and encouragement as a thought partner.
Susan Kajiwara-Ansai, a veteran educator, has served in many roles at school, district, and state levels. An award-winning elementary school teacher and reading specialist she worked with general education and diverse learners across grade levels, in multiple subject areas, in affluent and impoverished communities. Called on to share her classroom success, she lead professional development for teachers, networks of schools, and the entire district.
At Chicago Public Schools, she established the Office of Professional Learning tasked with district-wide learning for administrators and teachers implementing the new teacher evaluation system. As the Deputy Chief of Teaching & Learning at CPS, she oversaw the development and execution of strategic plans for content teams, grants administration, implementation of MTSS and district policy.
Susan has served on ISBE committees and the boards of several community organizations. Her work at all levels is marked by thoughtful listening, critical data analysis, collaborative planning, and empowering leadership to serve students, teachers, and administrators.
Meet the Founders
Meet the Team
Luwayne has devoted his academic and professional career to empowering members of underserved communities by focusing on childhood development and welfare, familial communication, and early childhood literacy. Luwayne earned his B.A. in psychology at Wayne State University and is pursuing his M.A. in International Psychology at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. These institutions allowed Luwayne to lead research teams & global consulting projects. Additionally, in his spare time, he travels to embrace and understand the importance of community in various cultures.
Claire Weinstein is a dedicated advocate for improving early literacy outcomes within elementary classrooms, leveraging her expertise in early childhood education, including an M.S. from the Erikson Institute and experience as a classroom teacher in grades PK-1. Claire is passionate about making a positive impact. As an Instructional Coach and Interventionist, she ensures that each interventionist receives quality instructional support to empower each child we work with to become a fluent and confident reader.
Grants & Communications Associate
Cristal is a multilingual educator and published creative writer passionate about multiculturalism, global awareness, and multimedia storytelling. She has taught English, literacy, and ESL from primary school to community college in both the public and private sectors in Beijing, Saigon, Hong Kong, and Chicago. Cristal holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Theatre and Dance from Grinnell College and a Master of Fine Arts in Dramatic Writing and Film from The Savannah College of Art & Design. In addition to creating art and teaching, Cristal loves to read, travel, watch sports, go to Temple, and spend time with loved ones.
Reach out to Partners in Integrating Education to set up a time we can discuss working with you to accelerate student learning and SEL competence in your classroom, school, or district.