A Letter from IDEA Co-founder, CEO and Superintendent JoAnn Gama

Hi Team & Family. I have had a lot of jobs in my 20 years at IDEA Public Schools, starting as Assistant Director and teacher in Donna, Texas, and lately as President and Superintendent. Now I’m excited to move into a new role as IDEA’s Chief Executive Officer.

I’m taking over from my friend Tom Torkelson, who has led IDEA since he and I had the crazy idea in our 20s to start our own school. Now we have almost 100 of them, and my own children are among IDEA’s 53,000 students.

Being a parent to 3rd and 7th graders at our neighborhood IDEA Public School is a big part of my motivation for working at IDEA. I know from my own experience growing up in Houston and being the first in my family to go to college that education is the key to a world of choices. That’s what I want for my kids, and it’s what I work for every day, for every IDEA student.

Right now is a really hard time for kids and families. We’re on top of each other at home. We’re trying to do school in our kitchens. Some people are out of work, and others are working heroically to take care of the rest of us. There’s just a lot of uncertainty and stress. But what I see in the IDEA community is a “Whatever It Takes” spirit that has been a hallmark of our Team & Family since the beginning. We’ll get through this.

I hope you’ll join me and other IDEA parents this Wednesday, April 22 at 6 PM for our weekly town hall right here on Facebook. We’ll talk about how homeschooling is going, share what IDEA is doing to support families, and check in with each other during this unusual time. Hope to see you then.

 

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