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Success Story: Iman Cassells Alleyne

Updated: Jun 21, 2023

"It is good to have a plan, but even better to have purpose!"


How Kind Academy Began


When my son was 4, he had to go to preschool. I decided to work as an ESE Specialist/Special Education Teacher that same year at a public school nearby. Each day he would cry at drop-off and he talked about how he didn't get to play enough, and he hated school. I also saw things behind the scenes like lack of socializing time, lots of busy work, and just not enough focus on creativity. I also noticed that kids, teachers, and administrators were all constantly stressed. I quit my job and decided to homeschool my son that year. I had to figure out a way to replace our income, and I really missed being around students so I started a Nature School, which turned into a 2-day homeschool program, and now here we are 7 years later with a full-blown microschool network.

Overcoming Obstacles

It definitely hasn't been smooth sailing. The biggest challenges we faced were understanding zoning and planning laws and finding a space that worked for our kids. We have moved about 5 times from different facilities, but we learned a lot in the process.


Model for Instruction

We use a combination of models and then make sure we include the interests of our students. We also focus heavily on doing what works for our learners. I would call us eclectic and we love Reggio Emila, Montessori, Agile Learning, and The Kind Model of Learning.


Advice

I would say it is great to have a plan, but having a purpose is what will get you through. If you are serious about starting a Microschool that lasts a long time, you will go through moments of not knowing how to keep the lights on, staffing concerns, students who need a little bit more attention, and facility obstacles. Having a deep understanding of your why, and knowing that it is your mission to make sure your learners are getting the education they deserve will hopefully keep you going.


Shoutout

A few acknowledgments that I have to shout out would be Laurel Suarez of Compass Outreach and Education Center, Vela Fund, Yass Prize, Kerry McDonald, my kids, and last but definitely not least my husband Jamaal Alleyne. My family has really had to be supportive during all of this because there are moments where I have to be really focused on our microschool legacy. I am grateful for them for understanding and for being there for me always.


Favorite phrase or motto

"It is good to have a plan, but even better to have purpose!" — Sadhguru


Where to find her

Location: South Florida + Coral Springs, Port Saint Lucie, Online + Growing! Website: www.kindacademy.org





Networking

LinkedIn Group - Microschool Florida www.microschoolflorida.com

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