Model & Strategy
Globally, over 250 million kids do not have basic reading, writing, and math skills, directly limiting their opportunities for future employment. Due to obstacles like isolation, child poverty, teacher shortages, and limited resources, schools in rural and underserved communities are hardest hit. TeachUNITED focuses on these communities where educational disparities are most acute to close the gap and break the cycle of poverty.
TeachUnited is dedicated to supporting and building the capacity of teachers as a means to improve education and reduce inequality in underserved, predominantly rural communities with acute educational disparities. By partnering with schools and districts and providing transformational training, instructional coaches, resources, and long-term connections for teachers, they improve student learning outcomes and increase teacher retention and leadership skills.
Heather Hiebsch co-founded TeachUNITED with a deep commitment to serving teachers, rooted in 20 years of experience and research in public education. Prior to launching TeachUNITED, Heather was the founding principal of an innovative K-12 school. During her time at the school, she made it her mission to support the teachers and staff by providing opportunities to try innovative new teaching practices, network with other educators, and focus on positive relationships with students. Academic growth data supported the belief that children have the highest potential to succeed when they are taught by highly-skilled, supported, and engaged teachers.
In 2016, Heather took those core beliefs to tackle the global education crisis and the United Nations SDG4. She launched TeachUNITED to ensure every child has the teacher he/she deserves. To reach this goal, Heather believes every teacher, everywhere, should have access to professional development and a supportive network of coaches and education leaders from around the world. Heather has been featured as the keynote speaker at Digital Learning’s Inaugural Conference and published as a case study education leader by the Christensen Institute, Evergreen Education, Project Tomorrow, EdWeek, and Forbes. She has been a featured speaker at the International Council for Online and Blended Learning, a finalist for the Global MindED Inclusive Leader Award, and a Cordes Fellow.
Employability Skills: TeachUNITED students report double-digit increases in 21st-Century and life skills, like critical thinking, collaboration, and academic perseverance.
Gender Equity: Girls in Tanzania showed a 2x increase in secondary school promotion rates.
Academic Growth: Students showed a 115% growth across all subject areas in US programs after just one year.
STEM Subjects: Students increased math and science outcomes in all regions served, including a 2x increase in math in Tanzania and a 50% increase in Costa Rica.
COVID-19 Response: Provided more than 2,300 hours in instructional coaching to schools to support quality learning during COVID-19 physical school closures.