When it comes to leading tough conversations, Hollywood has taught many of us to always swing for the fences. Yet this all-or-nothing approach to tough conversations, especially race conversations, just as often leads to catastrophe as it does to success. In this interactive keynote, Matthew Kay will present a counter vision to home-run-or-nothing thinking and work with fellow teachers to design curriculum build for regular, predictable successes.
Matthew R. Kay is a proud product of Philadelphia’s public schools and a founding teacher at Science Leadership Academy (SLA). He is a graduate of West Chester University and holds a Masters in Educational Leadership with a Principals’ Certificate from California University of Pennsylvania.
At SLA, he teaches an innovative inquiry-driven, project-based curriculum. He is also the Founder and Executive Director of Philly Slam League (PSL), a non-profit organization that shows young people the power of their voices through weekly spoken word competitions. The PSL is the only season-long, school-based slam poetry league in the United States.
He deeply believes in the importance of earnest and mindful classroom conversations about race. Furthermore, he believes that any teacher who is willing to put in the hard work of reflection can, through the practice of discrete skills, become a better discussion leader. Driven by these convictions, he is passionate about designing professional development that teachers find valuable.
Matthew lives in Philadelphia with his wife, Cait, and his daughter, Adia Sherrill.