Scripps College alumna Jenna Leahy ’10 was named to Forbes’ annual list for 2017, recognized as a young leader helping transform the future of education in and out of the classroom. Leahy and fellow educator Tacey Clayton (University of Phoenix ’08) joined forces to start , a K-3 public charter school that is part of the “New Schools for Phoenix” incubator program in Phoenix, Ariz. The duo met while working for the Teach For America program in Phoenix in 2010, and in 2012, founded CASA Academy because of their mutual interest in closing the academic achievement gap for students in low-income communities.
At the Phoenix-based charter school, 98 percent of CASA Academy students qualify for free and reduced lunch, 90 percent are students of color, and 72 percent are English language learners. The founders have set a student achievement goal of 1.5 years of growth in one year for each student. The CASA Academy entrepreneurs have raised $1.1 million in grants and donations, along with over $720,000 in scholarships for their students.
Leahy earned her undergraduate degree from Scripps in politics and international relations, a major now called politics, and holds a certificate in elementary and early childhood instruction and a master‘s in Educational Administration and Supervision through a Teach For America scholarship at the University of Phoenix.