24 Oct 2019

Turahn Dorsey – The Future of Learning

Oct 24, 2019 At SITE SANTA FE

$10 general admission/ $5 members, students

Dorsey examines the demand for rapidly changing career skills and what it implies for reimagining learning–and more urgently–embracing innovation in education. Proposing to accelerate educational innovation, Dorsey takes ecosystemic approaches to broaden student and educator access to community- and work-based learning experiences, augmenting academic content with “just-in-time” skill development and real-world application.  Dorsey argues how innovation is critical to, and has to be a driver for, racial and gender equity in education and broader economic inclusion.

The Innovative Thinker Lecture is an annual presentation established in honor of SITE’s former Director of Education, Juliet Myers. This lecture highlights the significant work of a visionary educator.

Sponsored by the Gale Family Foundation

Doors open at 5:30 PM.


Turahn Dorsey served as the Chief of Education for the City of Boston and a member of Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s cabinet from September 2014 to November 2018. As Chief of Education, Dorsey set the city’s strategic agenda for improving instructional quality and student support across the education pipeline and better integrating school-, community-, and work-based learning opportunities. 

Dorsey worked with a broad array of partners across early education, K-12, post-secondary, state government and the nonprofit and private sectors to: -Create 1,000 new high-quality pre-K seats and develop Boston’s Universal Pre-K system;
-Launch the Boston Basics 0-3 early development campaign to share early childhood development principles and practices with parents and caregivers across the city;
-Lead the first phase of Boston Public Schools’ High School Redesign initiative which engaged 2,000 stakeholders across Boston to establish principles to guide the development of new high school programs at BPS schools including Tech Boston Academy, Boston Day and Evening Academy, Dearborn Early College and STEM Academy, the Margarita Muniz School and Madison Park Vocational Technical High School;
-Lead Phase I of the City’s Build BPS initiative, which produced the 2017 Education and Facilities Master Plan Report and the City’s first school building database. The City used the 2017 report to guide nearly $200 million in new school and school improvement construction;
-Lead the replication of Becoming A Man in five Boston high schools to provide high-quality supports for Black and Brown boys.
-Contribute to the development of Boston’s College, Career and Life Readiness Definition, which describes the capabilities and competencies that all students should develop by the time they graduate from high school;
-Expand Boston’s nation-leading summer learning system from 60 sites serving 3,500 students in 2014 to 142 sites serving 12,855 students in 2018;
-Develop the Boston Bridge pilot pathway which connects the City’s Tuition-Free Community College initiative to the state’s Commonwealth Commitment program to provide qualified students a path to a free four-year bachelor’s degree; and;
-Redesign the City’s scholarship program and launched the GRAD Last Mile Fund, an innovative scholarship program designed to help students facing financial hardship in their final college semesters complete their degrees.

Prior to joining the Mayor’s cabinet, Mr. Dorsey served as Evaluation Director and an Education Program Officer at the Barr Foundation. At Barr, Dorsey led the development and implementation of data monitoring and evaluation frameworks for Barr’s investments in local education and climate change. Additionally, he managed the Foundation’s giving in out-of-school time, focused on expanding summer learning options, creating systemic approaches to school-community partnerships and developing education and career pathways for disconnected youth. 

Mr. Dorsey’s career builds on 15 years spent as a program evaluator and researcher at Moore and Associates in Southfield, Michigan and Abt Associates in Cambridge, MA. As a researcher, he led and participated in projects spanning a number of public policy, community change and public health related issues. The body of work he contributed to for state and local governments, as well as foundations, covers a number of quantitative and qualitative technical areas including outcome and impact analyses and Theory of Change-based program evaluation. 

Mr. Dorsey’s volunteer efforts also focus on systems innovation and improvements in education. He currently serves on the Boston After School and Beyond (vice-chair), Third Sector New England, Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology and Boston Children’s Chorus boards. Prior to joining the Walsh Administration, Dorsey served as co-chair for the Boston Public Schools’ School Quality Working Group and a member of the External Advisory Committee on School Assignment. 

Finally, Mr. Dorsey is a proud native of Detroit, Michigan and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Michigan. 


2019-10-24 0:00:00 2019-10-24 12:00:00 America/Denver Turahn Dorsey – The Future of Learning Another amazing event at SITE Santa Fe SITE SANTA FE SITE Santa Fe info@sitesantafe.org