Deborah Stern, PhD

School Design & Curriculum Development

Deborah has been working in urban classrooms since 1988, first as an NCTE award-winning middle and high school English teacher in Chicago, and more recently as a teacher, coach, and charter school administrator in Philadelphia. Her work helps educators use rigor, relationships, and relevance to close the achievement gap.

Deborah’s writing has been featured in journals and books, most notably in Teaching English So It Matters (Corwin Press, 1994). She began to work with pre-service and veteran teachers in Chicago and continues in Philadelphia, where she focuses on classroom culture, curriculum, instruction, and assessment.

Deborah was a co-founder at Mastery Charter Schools, and served there as the first Director of Education. Since leaving Mastery in 2008, she has worked with several high performing Philadelphia charter schools, including Freire Charter School, Pan American Charter School, and YES Philadelphia, providing professional development, literacy and leadership coaching, hiring, curriculum, and charter application services. She has extensive experience setting up and managing assessment systems that raise student achievement and transform curriculum and instruction.

She earned a BA from Swarthmore College, an MAT from the University of Chicago, and a PhD in Reading, Writing, and Literacy from the University of Pennsylvania.