Meet ADE Award Finalist: Ashley Greenway

By Jenny Burns, Community Coordinator for Allen Distinguished Educators
February 1, 2016


Ashley Greenway is among 16 finalists for the 2016 Allen Distinguished Educators (ADE) Award. Ashley is "STEM"ulating Young Minds with her project-based computer science, engineering and entrepreneurship program.

A first grade teacher at Elm Street Elementary in Rome, Georgia, Ashley was recently named Georgia Power STEM Laureate and Elm Street Elementary Teacher of the Year. The STEM Georgia Educator Laureate Awards are designed to reward Georgia K-12 classroom teachers for exceptional work in the area of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. Ashley advocates that the strength of the maker movement is the collaboration of learners and creation of problem solvers. Her low income, minority students have been empowered to take chances and embrace failures as a way to learn and improve.

Ashley's most noteworthy classroom initiative is Sugar Kids Beauty, an education corporation designed and run by first grade students. Begun in August 2015, with seed funding from a national company, this business has become a model for successful entrepreneurship in schools. With over $15,000.00 in sales in just three months, it is the most successful of their funded projects. Ashley and her first grade team have received recognition at forums and organizations statewide, been honored by the local City Commission, and taken part in digital marketing with sales in twenty-six states. Part of the business plan is to give back; the first graders, under Ashley’s leadership, used profits to purchase a six month’s supply of food (1,700 lbs) for the local Community Kitchen. Sugar Kids Beauty has five student-run departments: Research and Development, Creative Design, Marketing, Finance, and Shipping and Handling where students become “experts” in their area and take part in the training of new groups as they rotate through stations, thus becoming an innovative and sustainable learning model.

Meet the other finalists for the $25,000 Allen Distinguished Educators Award.


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