The Schoolyard Podcast Episode 16: Embracing Neurodiversity in Education

The Schoolyard Podcast Episode 16: Embracing Neurodiversity in Education

Welcome to the 16th episode of The Schoolyard Podcast! In this episode, we delve into the world of education through the lens of neurodiversity. Our host, Nancy Chung, sits down with Nichole Schlagel-Hope, principal of the Academy of Arts and Knowledge (AAK), to explore the value of neurodiversity in the classroom.

Nichole Schlagel-Hope, a seasoned educator with a background in special education, shares her insights on creating inclusive learning environments for neurodivergent students. With a focus on tailoring curriculum enhancements to meet diverse learning needs, Nichole emphasizes the importance of listening to students as individuals and building relationships to support their unique strengths and challenges.

Through her experiences in the classroom and as an administrator, Nichole highlights the power of creativity and unconventional thinking in education. She shares stories of students who have thrived when given the space to express themselves in non-traditional ways, emphasizing the importance of embracing differences and celebrating the beauty of neurodiversity.

Special guest Nichole Schlagel-Hope is interviewed by Schoolyard Podcast host, Nancy Chung

Nichole’s approach to education is rooted in building strong partnerships with parents and the community. By valuing parents as experts on their children and working collaboratively to support student success, Nichole demonstrates the transformative impact of inclusive teaching practices.

As we reflect on Nichole’s insights, we are reminded of the profound impact that neurodivergent students and teachers have on the educational landscape. Their unique perspectives and innovative approaches enrich the learning experience for all, challenging us to redefine traditional norms and embrace the diversity that neurodiversity brings to our shared journey of growth and learning.

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Join us in the Schoolyard as we continue to explore the magic of learning and celebrate the vibrant tapestry of neurodiversity in education!

nichole schlagel-hope headshot

Nichole Schlagel-Hope is the current principal of the Academy of Arts and Knowledge. Her focus revolves around fostering academic excellence by implementing curriculum enhancements tailored to diverse learning needs.

Nichole’s educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary and Special Education, a Master’s Degree in Human Resources and Educational Leadership, and a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction, Trauma, and Resilience in Educational Settings.

Under Nichole’s leadership, the Academy of Arts and Knowledge has earned the Performance with Distinction Award for two consecutive years. In 2022, they received the Colorado Department of Education Governor’s Distinction Improvement Award. Concurrently, she oversees the 21st Century Grant supporting the before and after-school program, contributing to a 34% increase in enrollment.

Nichole is a dedicated educator with a versatile background in charter and traditional educational settings. She brings extensive teaching experience from traditional classrooms, special education classes, high school, alternative education, and elementary education. Nichole is passionate about fostering an inclusive educational environment and creating equitable learning spaces for all students.

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