JoAnn Groh is the co-founder and co-director of Paulo Freire Freedom School - University and Paulo Freire Freedom School - Downtown (two small public middle schools in Tucson) that use interdisciplinary project based learning as their instructional methodology and have a curricular focus on social justice/environmental sustainability.
In addition to her experience as a classroom teacher and small school principal, JoAnn has consulted with schools around the country on a variety of educational issues. She was a Teaching & Learning Coach with the Ohio High School Transformation Initiative, a large school reform effort funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates and KnowledgeWorks Foundation and she has worked with turnaround schools coaching leadership teams on the use of instructional rounds and the creation of professional learning communities. She is a National Facilitator for the School Reform Initiative, training educators in facilitative leadership and Critical Friends Groups. In addition to her work with PBL, she delivers professional development on Common Core and differentiated instruction. In 1998, she received a national award from NEA for her work with teachers and adult learners.
JoAnn received her B.A. in Political Science from Claremont McKenna College, a J.D. from Hastings College of the Law, and her secondary teaching credential in Social Studies from Mills College. She taught middle and high school humanities for over 15 years, using interdisciplinary PBL units, and, when her schedule permits it, she continues to work in the classroom where her passion remains.