The Quad Manhattan is excited to announce our new summer program director, Ana Leon, MS, who brings four years of experience with the twice-exceptional community from The Quad Preparatory School as a lead teacher and three years with The Quad Manhattan Summer Program as a psychosocial core teacher.
Notably, Ana has served as a member of the subcommittee for diversity, equity, and inclusion at The Quad Manhattan and the DEI Chair of the Lower School at Quad Prep since 2020. In her experience as a lead teacher at The Quad Preparatory School, she has worked with early elementary students, transforming the STEM curriculum with her colleagues. Ana's commitment to teaching for justice and inclusivity for all, paired with her natural leadership skills have prepared her to take on the role as camp director.
"I love working with twice-exceptional students and getting to know each child individually," said Ana.
Ana earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Queens College and a Dual Masters in Education and Special Education with a concentration in Autism Spectrum Disorder from Long Island University. She began her journey in education in 2010, volunteering in schools in White Plains CSD for several years and serving as a one-to-one Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) paraprofessional for about a year. In her first professional experience Ana worked in a Montessori preschool in Long Island City as an associate director where she planned trips and activities for campers. Her teacher training culminated in a first and second grade NEST program in Littleneck Queens in 2016, which led to full time work as a head teacher in a preschool in Brooklyn and subsequent path to The Quad Prep in 2017.
As an educator, Ana says she values the psychosocial component of her current roles at The Quad Manhattan Summer Program and The Quad Prep, recalling her days as a researcher studying the behavioral effects of environmental chemicals on the hippocampus.
"[I look forward to] seeing all the kids and being outside of the classroom," Ana says. She adds regarding pandemic life, and looking forward to an in-person camp, "I miss people."
In addition to her typical teaching duties at The Quad Prep School, Ana serves as Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) chair-host where she leads meetings for the taskforce biweekly, assists with presentations for the subcommittees, creates talking points for the subcommittees to present on, including those related to race, religion, age, language, sexuality, gender, disability, and more. Ana works closely with the school's DEI consultant to make sure all of the work of the taskforce and subcommittees is focused and respectful.
"It is nice to see the impact that the work is having for the staff too," she says, "People are thankful there's a space for questions and [my colleagues] are engaged in the work with me."