Founder, parent and educator.
Freshly graduated with a degree in Elementary Education in Belgium in 2005, Anne started teaching that same year in Cairo, Egypt. After 4 years, she moved to Lake Charles, Louisiana where she worked in a public school as a fourth grade teacher. In 2011 Anne moved to New Orleans and has worked since then as a teacher within the traditional system. After giving birth to her son, looking at him growing up, full of energy and curiosity, it became an evidence that something else was needed. Anne decided to “be the change” that she wanted to see and partnered with her friends to create Dat School! Her main goal is to see children growing up naturally happy!
Founder, CEO: Beloved Community
Blog: One Good Question, https://rhondabroussard.com/
Rhonda Broussard founded Beloved Community to create sustainable paths to equitable schools and communities. Her vision for Beloved Community is informed by her education leadership and Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s goal “ to create a beloved community and this will require a qualitative change in our souls as well as a quantitative change in our lives.”
Rhonda has been a leader in diversity and international education initiatives throughout her career. In 2007, she founded St. Louis Language Immersion Schools (SLLIS), a charter management serving an intentionally diverse school community with language immersion and International Baccalaureate pedagogy for all students. Under Rhonda’s leadership, the the first three schools in the network became IB World Authorized Schools, and SLLIS achieved an AYP of 92%, equivalent to Accreditation with Distinction from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Rhonda served as President of SLLIS until June 2015.
Rhonda is a Pahara-Aspen Institute Fellow and an Eisenhower Fellow. She completed her undergraduate studies in French and Secondary Education at Washington University in St. Louis and a Master of Arts degree in French Studies from New York University’s Institute of French Studies. Rhonda and her bilingual family live in her native Louisiana where she studies, performs, and occasionally teaches dances from the African diaspora.
Katie has a background in photojournalism, Spanish, and marketing. She has been involved with Dat School's evolution since 2014 and is one of the co-founders. Katie believes in the importance and value of having more than just the public/private school options for the children of New Orleans. Her enthusiasm for the project and her experience in journalism and marketing have helped to propel Dat School into existence.
Marion has been an elementary school teacher for 13 years. Originally from Belgium, she has adopted New Orleans as her home 9 years ago. She is involved in several social and cultural activities and organizations. On behalf of Dat School, Marion is a 4.0 Schools Tiny Fellowship alumna. A life-long and avid learner, she has traveled to many countries and visited alternative schools in different parts of the world. For more info, read Birth of the project.
Ferd's career has been a perfect illustration of Self-Directed learning. Already an experienced musician, sailor, carpenter, his latest journey has been becoming a parent. Seeing the way children discover the world led him to develop an interest for Dat School.
Ferd holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature and worked as a journalist out of college. He cultivated his passions working as a carpenter and musician. Between music tours, he worked at Stone Mountain School, a North Carolina boarding school for young boys with behavioral challenges. This was his first taste of alternative schooling and he saw how students thrived in malleable environments that can be tailored to their individual needs.
After a few years as a traveling musician, Ferd became more engaged in the New Orleans community through his 5yr old son, Buck. He has experienced some of the school systems here and seen the various opportunities and pitfalls that come with conventional education.
Serve Louisiana member - volunteer and community garden programs coordinator - facilitator
Alix has over 8 years of experience working with young children in schools, after school programs, camps, and other settings. Through those experiences she learned that the most important thing you can do for children is be a good listener, which is why she found herself joining the team at Dat School. Originally from New Jersey, Alix went to school in Ohio, lived in Texas, and traveled to 5 different continents, but finally landed herself in New Orleans, where she intends to stay forever. In her travels and schooling she has learned French and is currently working on her Spanish. The weather of the Gulf Coast suits her well because Alix is like a tomato plant; she needs 8 hours of sunshine a day to grow. She cannot wait to share her love of being outside in a school where children let their curiosity lead the way.