As part of our ongoing series Meet Our GDS Faculty and Staff, we are excited to present: Meet Azureé Harrison!
Read the Q&A below to learn more about Azureé.
- Primary Roles: Lower School Instructional Coach.
- Pronouns: They/Them or She/Her
- Years at GDS: Five years down and halfway into year six!
What do you love about GDS?
I love that I can show up to GDS every day as my authentic self. I also love that for colleagues, students, and families.
Why do you teach/do your job?
I have always loved learning! As a student, I really wished I had more educators that looked like me and could relate to me. I decided to teach in honor of those two things. Now, I am dedicated to coaching to be a partner in growth for teachers and to support them in their journeys.
A favorite part of your job?
I aim to provide space for educators to think critically about diversity, equity, and inclusion in both classroom culture and teaching practices. I also LOVE celebrating successes, both small and large!
Your teaching or work style in three words?
Compassionate. Deliberate. Collaborative.
Other GDS activities or roles that community members may not know about?
Lower School Co-Lead for Staff of Color Affinity Group!
A top hope/wish for your students and/or colleagues?
To feel deeply valued for their strengths and genuinely supported in their growth areas.
Making up raps/songs to narrate the randomness of everyday life! Also: reading and running.
Please share some various favorites...
Favorite Movie: Alice in Wonderland (old school Disney version)
Favorite Book: Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde,
Favorite Music Genre: 90s Hip-Hop and R&B, baby!
Favorite Food: Cheeseburgers *nom nom nom*
Tell us about your family and/or pets.
My wife Rebecca and I have twins named Ari and Sage (who are in Pre-K at GDS) and a gray tabby cat named Greyson. Sadly, we said goodbye to our beloved Boxer dog named Koi in November, but she lives on in our hearts. Our favorite thing to do on a rainy weekend is clear away the furniture in our living room, turn out the lights, break out the glow sticks, and crank some music for a family dance party! Greyson usually hides, but Koi was known to rock a mean glow stick "collar" and dance with us!
One thing about yourself your students/colleagues/others probably don't know?
I'm told often that I'm pretty stylish, but I secretly refuse to pay full price for ANYTHING. I buy nearly all my clothes on clearance or out-of-season when the sales are deep and just wait months to wear them! I love saving money.
One thing on your life "bucket list" you've already accomplished?
This is small, but I've always wanted a hammock. I bought one at the beginning of summer '21 and when I tell you it is life-changing, I am not kidding!
One thing on your life “bucket list” you have yet to accomplish?
I really want to take a family vacation to a snowy, mountainy location somewhere in British Columbia. I love the idea of being cozied up somewhere, surrounded by snow and trees with the option to venture out into the wilderness whenever desired!
With a tip from Azureé, we reached out to hear what a colleague had to say...
Lower School teacher (and Azureé’s former 2nd grade partner teacher) Sasha Shahidinejad said: “I think everyone can attest how wonderful Azureé is, not only as a teacher (now instructional coach) but overall as a human being. Everyone that meets them feels how special they are quite quickly. I have felt so incredibly fortunate to have been their co-teacher for two years. I learn more from watching them be a teacher than from any professional development. I cannot think of a better person to support us in our growth as teachers and as a whole staff. Azureé always has everyone’s interest in mind and is an advocate for all. GDS is so incredibly fortunate to have them as an integral member of our community.”