Adrienne Deshaies

Adrienne grew up in Denver and fell in love with teaching while working at the Boys and Girls Club during college. Lots of people try out teaching and end up leaving, for a wide variety of reasons. Adrienne’s story isn’t the typical teacher burnout story though. The way she tells it, Adrienne has actually quit teaching twice, for two totally different reasons.

“I think we make a mistake when we, I mean, obviously there’s an achievement gap in our country and it needs to be addressed, but I think we make a mistake when we assume that academic rigor and raising academic expectations is the only thing the needs to be done to close that. From what I’ve seen, when all you focus on is more accountability and higher expectations and more rigor, if it’s not coupled with support and love and creativity and enthusiasm and joy, maybe kids will learn how to read but I bet they’re gonna drop out of school the first chance they get because they’re gonna hate it. I think we need to work on bringing those two things together or we are just gonna burn kids out of school. It doesn’t do any good if they have STEM skills and hate school and hate learning; school has to be a place they want to go to.”

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