Key School Staff
A Dedicated Team of Professionals
From researching physics in a nuclear laboratory, teaching English in Malaysia, developing a math dictionary, working in children's publishing, reporting on television, being foster parents, to running the Boston marathon in record time, our faculty brings a variety of valuable experiences and insights to Key School.
With a commitment to professional development, our highly trained teachers use a unified, intentional, cohesive approach. Dedicated and caring, Key's teachers are committed to helping children become successful students.
Every teacher at Key School is Orton-Gillingham-trained. Each language teacher has completed a rigorous, supervised clinical teaching experience to ensure a high level of compentancy with multisensory structured language instructional principles. Math teachers are trained in the multisensory math principles and approach. Both language and math teachers use a five-step Orton-Gillingham-based lesson plan which includes visual, auditory, and kinesthetic teaching and ample review and reinforcement in a teaching-for-mastery environment.
Key School provides its own teacher training to all faculty, under the supervision of a Fellow of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators (AOGPE). Key uses the curriculum standards of AOGPE and is accredited by the International Multisensory Structured Language Education Council (IMSLEC). Teachers are in the mindset of continuous improvement and lifelong learning. Two-thirds of the faculty have passed a national certifying examination and are credentialed at the Certified Academic Language Practitioner level or the Certified Academic Language Therapist level.
Get to know Meredith MacKenzie:
What do you like most about your job at CDS? “I was impressed from the day I came to interview with the kindness and consideration that the students showed one another, as well as the quality of the faculty in the Upper School. These are people that I am happy to be around every day.”
In your opinion, how does the CDS community inspire students to be courageous and curious, wonder about things that they don’t understand, try new things, and develop individual passions? “In the Upper School, the faculty and students are incredibly supportive of student attempts to do new things. All effort is applauded, and the goal is improvement instead of perfection.”
How would you describe your classroom? “My classroom is a small space for small classes. We have no more than six students at a time, usually four or fewer, sometimes only one. This allows me to get to know my students very well and provides a lot of time for personal interaction and guidance. My students come to trust the safety of this space as a place where they can open up about the challenges they face in high school and know that we will work through difficulties together with discretion and tact to help them achieve their personal goals.”
What books and authors inspire you? “Two excellent books are Mel Levine’s The Myth of Laziness and Dr. and Dr. Eide’s The Dyslexia Advantage. Much of my curriculum comes from materials produced with the Orton-Gillingham approach in mind and from training I received through the Key Learning Center. I have developed my own Multisensory Spanish curriculum for my Linguistics class to prepare 9th graders for taking Spanish I the following year.”
What is your favorite quote about education, mentorship, children, and/or learning? "Laziness is not an innate trait. We are all born with a drive to produce...to be and to feel useful and effective... To feel fulfilled in life, it helps immeasurably if you can take pride in your work." From Mel Levine’s The Myth of Laziness.
How would you describe yourself and/or your approach to your job in 10 words or less? “To empower students to become their best academic selves.”