Director of Educator Impact
Symon was born just outside London, England, and holds a Degree in graphic design and Illustration, a Bachelor of Education in Design and Technology Secondary and a Postgraduate Certificate of Education specializing in alternative education from the University of the West of England, Bristol, and a California Teaching Credential in Special Education.
While working in advertising and design, Symon was given the opportunity to support adults with physical and cognitive disabilities through art programs. Soon realizing that he had reached his limit in his ability to teach, he returned to college where he gained his Bachelor of Education. After graduating, Symon taught within the Special Education department of a secondary school in the UK for 7 years, supporting students classified with both learning and emotional disabilities. It was here that he began to develop his belief that all students will be successful when the enabling conditions are in place. He came to Colorado in 2000 to support students at a middle school classified with Significant and Identifiable Emotional Disabilities. Symon continued in this role for the next 2 years before moving into a leadership position as an instructional coach to support staff in developing their pedagogical practices. During this time, he developed a passion for designing and facilitating professional development. He continued to hone his skills and later moved to the position of Instructional Coach, Secondary Schools for the school district. Having come from a project-based learning school implementing the Expeditionary Learning model, Symon moved to a position at Expeditionary Learning designing and facilitating Professional Development to support multiple schools and districts. The opportunity to work alongside school leaders and educators at multiple schools and districts further solidified his belief that all learn differently and all can be successful when the enabling conditions are present. During his 5 years at Expeditionary Learning, Symon continued to develop his understanding of design and facilitation of quality professional development and had the privilege of collaborating with a team of facilitators to develop content and strategy, and begin to identify guiding principles for quality professional learning. A move to Oakland, California in 2011 offered an opportunity to join Envision Learning Partners as Director of Professional Learning, supporting the development of a professional learning model and strategy to support educators in deepening their understanding of pedagogical practices. A similar role was undertaken at Learner-Centered Collaborative with the focus on providing quality professional learning that supports all educators, school leaders, and districts in developing a learner-centered educational model.
Symon lives in the Bay Area, California with his family and dog and is an avid mountain & road biker, and runner. He continues to pursue his artistic passion and makes art on a regular basis.
When a flower doesn’t bloom, you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower.”