Eric Chagala (Ed.D. Educational Leadership) is the founding principal of the Vista Innovation & Design Academy (VIDA). Eric believes that all kids need a place to matter, that schools have souls and those souls need to be nurtured, and that our actions say what we believe about kids.
Eric’s belief in Design Thinking for education is deeply rooted in his dissertation that focused on the critical resiliency of high achieving Latino youth. This research solidified the knowledge (not just belief) that schools have the power to either defeat or to perpetuate the status-quo of a neighborhood.
Eric has spoken across North America in both workshops & Keynotes about Design Thinking, and to talk what it takes for school leaders to build a true school culture that will be ripe for innovation. In addition, Eric is on the Faculty for the Graduate School at High Tech High, he is an Apprentice Coach with Stanford University's "School Re-Tool" work at the famed d.School (Institute of Design), and is a Deeper Learning Fellow with DLLF. In addition, Eric is the Co-Founder of #DesignCamp for Education.
Eric lives in San Diego with his wife, two daughters and their Golden Retriever.
Eric's doctoral research focused on what, if any patterns could be found amongst high-achieving Latino youth. The research was conducted at a San Diego-area high school.
Eric has had the opportunity to speak to fellow educators about pressing issues in education for the past several years. Eric’s talks are often laced with humor, which cut at the edge of the things everyone thinks about, but will often not say out loud. In addition to speaking to graduate students at most of the major universities in San Diego (UCSD, USD, Pt Loma & CSUSM), his most recent engagements have included:
Core Beliefs for Education
Often times professional educators will present their “Educational Philosophy” for others to read in an effort to get a sense of who and what one stands for, and what the foundation of their decision making stands upon. Often these are lengthy treatise, filled with jargon and catch phrases.
I would like to offer others the fastest way to get to know me as a professional - with my Core Beliefs for education - jargon & rhetoric free:
1) Schools have souls, and those souls need to be nurtured
2) Our actions say what we believe about children
3) Schools have the power to defeat the status quo of a society, or to perpetuate it.
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