David McGuire, Principal & Parent Advocate
David is the Principal of Tindley Summit Academy and a Teach Plus Policy Fellow alum. He is the host of The Recess Podcast and co-host of The ENGAGE Podcast. He was born and raised a Hoosier and is dedicated to improving educational outcomes for all students in Indianapolis. He describes his educational beliefs as a reformer grounded in the best practices of traditional public schools where strong leaders mentored him. David graduated from Central State University with a degree in English and also holds advanced degrees from Indiana Wesleyan University and Marian University. David is currently a doctoral student at Marian University.
Andrew Pillow, Teacher & Parent Advocate
Andrew is a social studies teacher at KIPP Indy College Prep. Previously, he has taught math, technology, and literature. He is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and a Teach for America Alum. As a Teach Plus Policy fellow alum, Andrew is looking forward to putting the skills he has learned to good use. Andrew has written for several publications in the past on a wide variety of topics but will be sticking to education for his role on Indy K12.
Jason B. Allen, Special Education Teacher & Advocate
Jason is a special education teacher in Georgia and a fellow of the American Association of Educators. He is the founder of educational entities which consists of Speak Black Man podcast, Students for Equity, The Educators Voice Blog, Lillie’s Foundation, and more. He was raised in Atlanta, Georgia and comes from a family of educators. He is an advocate for students and families in public schools, especially students identified as exceptional learners. Jason’s educational beliefs are rooted in student excellence and providing every student the pathway to excel in their gifts, talents, and interests. He is a graduate of the University of West Georgia with a B.A. in English and master’s degree in special education.
Shawnta S. Barnes (Educator Barnes), Educator & Parent Advocate
Shawnta (Shawn-tay) is a married mother of identical twin boys. As a life-long Indiana resident, she attended school in two Indianapolis school districts; she attended Indianapolis Public Schools for two years and completed her education in Lawrence Township Schools. Her sons entered kindergarten during the 2016-2017 school year, so she not only navigates Indianapolis schools from the educator perspective but also the parent perspective. She has been an educator for over 15 years. Although she has worked in the urban traditional public school setting for the majority of her career, she student taught in rural Indiana, worked in the suburbs, and in public charter schools. Currently, she is the Editor-in-Chief and a writer for Indy K12, CEO of Blazing Brilliance, an education consulting business, CEO and Co-Founder of Brave Brothers Books, and coaches ENL student teachers at IUPUI. Previously, she served as a middle school academic dean, an elementary library/media specialist, an elementary and high school literacy coach, a middle and high school English/Language Arts teacher, and K-5 English as a New Language teacher. She is the winner of the 2019 Indiana Black Expo Excellence in Education Journalism Award. In her spare time, she is an urban gardener and writes about her harvest to table journey at www.gardenershicole.com. Her Indy K12 articles can be viewed here. To learn more about Shawnta, visit www.educatorbarnes.com.