Begin as you mean to go on

Building Equity in Education with Dr. Leena Bakshi


As we're thinking about who we are as teachers, where are we teaching and what are the systems that are at play? So when we're looking at behavior, who are we kicking out of the classroom? And if we're recommending people for a class, are we looking at their math levels? What gates are up that are keeping students away from courses in STEM? So looking at all of those gates and asking yourself, why did I say yes to this student and no to this student for a STEM program or for a gifted and talented program?

Episode Summary:

Often we start our businesses to solve a problem we’re experiencing ourselves. My guest on the show today, Dr. Leena Bakshi, is no different.

After seeing the limited access that underrepresented students have to math and science and the inequitable systems within education, Leena decided to start STEM 4 Real, a nonprofit professional learning organization committed to combining STEM content learning and leadership with principles of social justice.

You’ll definitely share this episode with the teachers and the administrators in your life.

Lena and I started working together about five months ago, and we've had the pleasure of working to align all of their business technology to support their business goals.

In this episode, Leena shares reflections on her entrepreneurial path and how getting started, even when you don't know all the steps to reach your goal, helped propel her business forward. She also talks about the dangers of ‘either or thinking,’ and offers three actionable steps for teachers to build more equity into their teaching that we can all learn from.

What You'll Learn in This Episode

  • [04:34] The STEM 4 Real startup origin story
  • [08:09] Leena’s advice on taking action before you’re ready
  • [10:00] The process of collaboration and keeping true to your intentions
  • [11:25] Inspiration leads to creating a business for change
  • [16:10] Creating support for leaders through a program that centers social justice
  • [20:32] Revolutionizing STEM instruction through the STEM 4 Real Network
  • [23:03] Addressing the needs of STEM educators in a holistic way
  • [25:39] Measuring results through the impact in the classroom
  • [31:22] The importance of keeping business simple to build credibility in the market
  • [34:52] Three tips for teachers that want be more equitable in their instruction
  • [37:42] Hooking students in by showing them how science and math can solve broader problems in society
  • [41:47] Hear what people think about Content Bootcamp

Connect with Dr. Leena Bakshi:

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Kronda Adair, Founder, Karvel DIgital

Kronda Adair

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Kronda Adair

Kronda is the CEO of Karvel Digital, a digital marketing agency that helps mission-driven service-based business owners how to use content to sell so they can automate their marketing and scale without burnout. She loves empowering small business owners to not be intimidated by all this tech stuff. She's often covered in cats.