Alexis Wiggins is the founder and director of CEEL – the Cohort of Educators for Essential Learning (www.ceelcenter.org). She has worked as a high-school teacher and instructional coach in the U.S., Spain, the Middle East and Asia and has consulted with schools all over the world, helping them utilize Spider Web Discussion, Understanding by Design (UbD), and the IB’s Approaches to teaching and learning (ATL). Alexis’s book, The Best Class You Never Taught: How Spider Web Discussion Can Turn Students into Learning Leaders (ASCD), explores how to transform classrooms and schools through high-level, student-led inquiry. Alexis is currently the English Department Chair at The John Cooper School in The Woodlands, TX. She organizes the annual CEEL Summer Symposium, which offers training in Spider Web Discussion and brings together the education world’s most interesting people for five days of innovation, conversation, and collaboration.
CEEL was guided by a few key mentors as it came into being. Three essential mentors were Grant Wiggins, Jay McTighe, and Elizabeth Rossini. Additionally, an advisory group made up of educators around the world helped shape the ultimate vision of the organization: Jennie Wathall, Reem Abu Rahmeh, Stephen Taylor, Allison Zmuda, Andy Greene, Dawn Zweig, Jenny Gillett, Tania Al Massarweh, Chad Schwaberow, Ian Hoke, David Pallás, Brooklyn Cook, Doug Lemov, and Jane Segre. CEEL owes much of its vision and mission to these inspirational educators and thinkers.