Episode 29: Ali Ronder

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Ali is a founding principle in ICARE (International Council for Accrediting Relationship-Based Education). She lives and breathes education and is deeply invested in shaping the future of learning. ICARE’s mission is to catalyze, synergize, and nourish diverse edu-ecosystems to “enlight and ignite” the evolution of education. Co-creating the ICARE holistic accreditation program is a labor of love and an expression of her utmost respect for colleagues who are doing the vital work of relationship-based education in schools and other programs around the world. http://www.enlightignite.com/

Ali’s learning and teaching experiences span the range of conventional and alternative education approaches. As a child, Ali was homeschooled, unschooled, Waldorf schooled, Montessori schooled, and public schooled. She has worked for (and selected for her daughters’ education) parent-run educational cooperatives, Waldorf-oriented and Montessori preschools, Sudbury schools, traditional public schools, and public charter schools.

Ali has been Development Director and Head of School for Sankalpa Academy, founding executive director of Integrity Academy at Casa de Luz, Center for Integral Studies, and executive director of AHB Community School, a creative and collaborative educational alternative that cultivates authentic, balanced critical thinkers who are prepared for a life of learning and community engagement.

Her early teaching experience focused on early childhood at South Austin Children’s Cooperative, Starbright Preschool, and Escuela Montessori de Montopolis. She taught bilingual kindergarten at Maplewood Elementary (an Austin public school) and kindergarten/first grade at Austin Discovery School, a progressive charter elementary school Ali also helped found the Clearview Sudbury School of Austin.

Ali holds an EC-4 teaching certificate from the State of Texas, a B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin in history/applied learning and development, and an M.Ed. from Texas State University in bilingual/bicultural education. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in educational administration at Texas State University. Ali has taught ESL in Mexico and Guatemala at Colegio Cuernavaca, Casa Xelaju, Colegio Alonzo Morelio, and La Pedrera. She also has taught yoga to both children and adults.

Ali has distinguished herself as a community leader, serving on the boards of numerous alternative schools and nonprofit groups that support health and social justice. She is a three-time Texas State University appointee to the Clinton Global Initiative University.