educators that are leading the way!

NABSE has identified leading educators to share their expertise during a special learning session.  This Education Leaders Series will kick-off the 47th National Conference in Dallas on November 14, 2019 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Dallas.  This is an experience you don't want to miss!

NABSE's Education Leader Series

Baruti Kafele

Principal Baruti Kafele, a highly regarded urban educator in New Jersey for more than twenty years, has distinguished himself as a master teacher and a transformational school leader. As an elementary school teacher in East Orange, NJ, he was named East Orange School District and Essex County Public Schools Teacher of the Year, was a finalist for New Jersey State Teacher of the Year, and was a recipient of the New Jersey Education Association Award of Excellence.As a middle and high school principal, Principal Kafele led the turnaround of four New Jersey urban schools, including “The Mighty” Newark Tech, which went from a low-performing school in need of improvement to national recognition, and which was recognized three times by U.S. News and World Report as one of America’s best high schools.

One of the most sought-after school leadership experts and education speakers in America, Principal Kafele is impacting America’s schools! Since leaving his principalship in 2011, he has delivered/conducted more than 1000 conference and program keynotes, professional development workshops, parenting seminars, and student assemblies. An expert in the area of “attitude transformation,” Principal Kafele is the leading authority for providing effective classroom and school leadership strategies toward closing what he coined, the “Attitude Gap.”


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Usamah Rodgers

Usamah Rodgers serves as the Dallas ISD Assistant Superintendent for Post-Secondary Partnerships and Programs.  In this role she leads Dallas ISD Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH), Early College High School and College Access Programs. Prior to becoming an Assistant Superintendent in Dallas ISD, Ms. Rodgers served as the Executive Director of P-TECH and Early College programs were she was responsible for assisting with the design and implementation of systems to support campuses as the district launched 18 Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) programs.   Usamah has served as a campus administrator at all levels and as a School Leadership Executive Director supervising twelve campuses in Dallas ISD.  Ms. Rodgers received a Bachelor’s of Science degree in elementary education from Missouri State University, a Master of Education degree in education administration from the University of Texas at Austin and is currently pursuing a doctorate in education administration from the University of Texas at Austin.

Barrington Irving

Captain Barrington Irving has traveled to 50 countries, conducted more than 30 STEM expeditions, and successfully challenged middle school students to build a car faster than a Ferrari 430 and then high schoolers to build a plane he flew on its test flight. In 2007, he set two world records—at age 23—as the youngest person and first black pilot to fly solo around the world. He has a passion to explore, inspire, and educate others. Now 34, Barrington is an explorer that investigates real world STEM problems across the globe. Launched in 2014, the Flying Classroom is a K-8 STEM+ digital curriculum that challenges students to design innovative solutions to the problems he investigates.

Before launching the Flying Classroom, Barrington created a nonprofit, Experience Aviation, which offers hands-on, STEM-based programs and career guidance to middle and high school students in Florida, Texas, Georgia and Detroit.

Born in Kingston, Jamaica and brought up in inner-city Miami, Barrington was inspired to pursue aviation at age 15, when a Jamaican airline pilot offered to mentor him.  He rejected college football scholarships to pursue a career in STEM and never looked back.

A Magna Cum Laude graduate of Florida Memorial University, Barrington was the recipient of a Congressional Resolution acknowledging his pioneering work in aviation education.  He received the Guinness World Record as the youngest person to fly solo around the world and was named a National Geographic Emerging Explorer in 2012.


Learn More About the Flying Classroom