Faculty Spotlight: Teaching to a child's whole self
As principal of Queensborough Leadership Academy, an elementary school in Shreveport, Louisiana, Marco French holds a simple teaching philosophy: Every child can learn.
“I know that all children are unique and come with many great things to offer as well as many things that are also distractions. Therefore, as an educator we must give a stimulating educational experience where we are always teaching the WHOLE child, equipping them with EVERYTHING they need where they can GROW physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially,” says French.
French strives to create an atmosphere where students can meet their full potential. “Allowing for a safe space where students are invited to take risks, express and share their ideas, accept themselves for who they are as well embrace the differences of others…that’s the goal,” he says.
His winning approach has been recognized through a long list of prestigious awards: Louisiana State Principal of the Year 2022, National Milken Award Educator, National Disney Educator Award, Louisiana Outstanding School Award, Caddo Parish Schools Principal of the Year, Louisiana’s Top 40 under Forty Business Professionals, Paul Bambric and Santoya Fellow Graduate, and the Call Me Mister Outstanding Educator Award.
As a professor at Reach, French appreciates the benefit of the faculty-practitioner model.
“Reach is an intentional practice that ensures that the art of teaching and learning does not become detached from real-world practices,” says French. “Teacher candidates are being taught from educators that are still in the field of practice, learning and growing with the changes in curriculum and instruction.”
It’s been a remarkable experience to watch his Reach students grow. French is also grateful to his department lead, Dr. Hercules. “Her support, passion, and encouragement has made me feel right at home in the program,” he says.
French believes teaching leads to a great celebration. “Educators activate the love and passion for learning, which in turn elevates one's perspectives, viewpoints and knowledge.”