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DePaul University faculty experts available to discuss back-to-school topics

Children raising hands in a classroom
CHICAGO — National education discussions from teacher shortages to curriculum requirements and school safety have been front and center throughout the summer. With many school districts close to opening the 2022-23 academic year, including Chicago Public Schools on Aug. 22, DePaul University experts are available to offer insights and commentary on a variety of back-to-school topics​.

Contact experts directly via email or, for assistance arranging interviews, email​ or call 312-241-9856.

Marie Donovan, Associate Professor of Teacher Education

Marie Donovan has spent her career guiding future teachers. She can speak on the reasons behind the teacher and substitute teacher shortage and the lack of librarians in schools; topics related to Chicago public elementary schools; the importance of reading in early elementary school students; the dearth of early childhood-age educators in Chicago and Illinois childcare centers; and the need for Illinois to continue supporting higher education and career development efforts for K-12 educators.
Martine Kei Green-Rogers, Dean of The Theatre School

A dramaturg, director and writer in addition to her role at DePaul, Martine Kei Green-Rogers can discuss the benefits of theatre classes for K-12 students; how DEI efforts can increase the pool of students interested in theatre; and the creativity that can be sparked in students by theatre.

Jacqueline Kelly-McHale, Associate Professor of Music Education

The director of DePaul’s music education program in the School of Music, Jacqueline Kelly-McHale​ can speak to the importance of music education for young children; tips for parents whose child’s school doesn’t have a music teacher; culturally responsive teaching in K-12 music classrooms; the role of social justice in music teacher education programs; and composition in K-12 classrooms.

Michelle Neuman, Clinical Assistant Professor of Nursing

Michelle Neuman is a primary care pediatric nurse practitioner and teaches in DePaul’s School of Nursing. As a former school nurse, she can discuss ways to keep students of all ages healthy and safe as they head back to school, including playing outdoors, nutrition, bullying, immunizations, and discussing “risky behaviors” such as substance use.

Melissa Ockerman, Associate Professor of Counseling Education

A 2012 and 2018 Illinois School Counselor Educator of the Year, Melissa Ockerman is available to discuss the role of a school counselor in K-12; why the ratio of students to counselors in many schools falls short of the American School Counselors Association’s recommendation of one per 250 students; what parents can do if their child doesn’t have access to a school counselor; and warning signs parents should look out for that their children might need a counselor.

Roxanne Owens, Chair and Associate Professor of Teacher Education
A junior high educator in Chicago before coming to DePaul, Roxanne Owens can speak on the reasons behind the teacher and substitute teacher shortage; topics related to children’s literature; preparing new teachers to enter the classroom; technology in education; and how education has changed following virtual learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Media Contact:
Russell Dorn