Virtual Learning Experience
A Curriculum Conversation with Katy ISD
Wednesday, May 3 | 2:00 p.m.
Tools and Resources for Texas System Leaders
Implementing high-quality instructional materials ensures all students have access to rigorous grade-level content. But how do you translate great materials into great instruction?
If you’re a Texas system leader involved in the selection, launch, or support of high-quality instructional materials for your school or system, this virtual learning event that aligns with the Strong Foundations Planning Grant and Essential Schools Framework Lever 4 is for you.
About the session
Join Melodie Blackwood, Director of Instructional Support at Instruction Partners, and leaders from Katy ISD to learn about the district’s curriculum journey from vision to selection to beginning implementation.
Dr. Sanée Bell, Assistant Superintendent, Karen Muller, Director of Elementary Curriculum and Instruction, and others from the Katy ISD team will share how they leveraged the Strong Foundations Planning Grant to establish a vision for effective instruction and guide a diverse set of stakeholders across the district to the selection of new curriculum.
Melodie Blackwood will discuss the research behind Instruction Partners’ Curriculum Support Guide (free tools and resources directly aligned to the Strong Foundations Planning Grant) and talk about how her team supported Katy ISD using the tools and resources in the guide.
We’ve set aside time to dig into your burning questions and collaborate with other leaders from across the state.
Melodie Blackwood, Director of Instructional Support
Melodie is a degreed Mechanical Engineer with multi-disciplinary experience in education, project management and consulting. Prior to transitioning to the classroom, she started her career in learning consulting with IBM. Since her transition, she has served as a math teacher, SPED co-teacher, online instructor for K12, and Director of Childcare. Before joining Instruction Partners, her most recent role was as Assistant Principal for a turnaround charter school where she received recognition for the rapid increase in math achievement. Melodie has several education certifications and trainings including her most recent completion of Texas Tech’s Personalized Learning Certification, Relay GSE’s Coaching Collaborative and Harvard’s Art of Leadership.
Dr. Sanée Bell, Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning
Dr. Sanée Bell is the Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning in Katy ISD. She earned her Doctorate in Educational Leadership with an emphasis in Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Houston Clear Lake. She has served as an executive director, elementary and middle school principal, assistant principal, teacher, and girls basketball coach. Dr. Bell is passionate about authentic, purposeful learning for students and teachers, and she also has a strong passion for leadership and its impact on teacher engagement, student learning, and school culture. She recognizes her impact as a leader and uses her role to inspire, motivate, and empower others.
The Katy ISD Team
Director of Elementary Curriculum and Instruction
In her 27 years as a Texas educator in both public and private systems, Karen Muller has supported student learning and teachers at the elementary, junior high, and high school levels. Karen began her career in education as a classroom teacher, dyslexia specialist, and instructional coach before moving into administration. Karen earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her Master’s degree from The University of Houston. She joined the Katy ISD team in 1999 and currently serves as the Director of Elementary Curriculum and Instruction. Karen believes that educators can change the world through teaching.
Elementary Curriculum Coordinator for ELAR
Nancy Bradley received her B.S. in Elementary Education from Moorhead State University and her Master’s of Education in Reading from Sam Houston State University. She is certified in the state of Texas as a Reading Specialist PK–12, Early Childhood Education PK–K, Elementary Self Contained 1–6, and English as a Second Language PK–12. Other certifications and endorsements include Texas Reading Academy and Reading Recovery. Nancy has spent the last 34 years in education as a PK, Kindergarten, First Grade, Second Grade, and Reading Recovery Teacher. She has served as a Reading Specialist, Language Arts Instructional Coach, and is currently Elementary Curriculum Coordinator for ELAR in Katy ISD.
District Literacy Specialist
Dr. Stacey Templeton is a district-level Literacy Specialist in Katy ISD. She has spent the last 20 years working as an Elementary Literacy Teacher (grades 3–6), Language Arts/Social Studies Instructional Coach, School Improvement Specialist, Adjunct/Research Professor, and an Educational Researcher with a focus in literacy and elementary education. Stacey is passionate about growing capable and dynamic teachers through professional development and coaching, building capacity for differentiation in learning to meet all students’ needs, and growing positive, engaging classroom environments where all students thrive.
Stacey has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education, a Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction (both from Washington State University), and an earned doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Houston.
Elementary Curriculum Coordinator
Celeste Ferranti currently serves as an Elementary Curriculum Coordinator in Katy ISD. She earned her Master’s in Education with an Emphasis in Reading and a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies both from Stephen F. Austin State University. Her certifications include Early Childhood through 6th grade, English as a Second Language PK–12, and Texas Reading Academy completion. During her tenure as an educator, she has worked as a classroom teacher, a Language Arts and Social Studies Instructional Coach, and District Literacy Lead Teacher. She is committed to building teacher capacity through an authentic curriculum that utilizes valid research to empower learning, and ongoing, purposeful professional development to ensure teachers feel confident and successful in their practice.