Dr. Donlon Named LEARN Assoc. Exec. Director

LEARN Names Dr. Ryan Donlon Associate Executive Director
Dr. Ryan Donlon

LEARN is delighted to welcome an innovative leader to guide the agency’s family of interdistrict magnet schools and support the development of professional learning systems for educators throughout the region.

Dr. Ryan Donlon, LEARN’s new Associate Executive Director, will head the agency’s Office of Teaching and Learning. The office includes five magnet schools of choice in the southeastern region and two in East Hartford through the agency’s partnership with Goodwin College.

Additionally, Donlon will aid southeastern Connecticut school district faculty and administrators with curriculum and instruction. LEARN serves 21 districts in southeastern Connecticut; one component of LEARN’s services includes helping the region’s teachers expand their expertise through training, technical assistance, and coaching.  

“The mission of LEARN is directly aligned to my passion for assuring a high quality education for every child in Connecticut,” Donlon said. “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to join this amazing LEARN family to serve all of the students in our magnet schools and across all of our member districts.” 

The LEARN Board of Directors Executive Committee unanimously approved his hiring on Friday, Aug. 2. He will work out of the agency’s Old Lyme central office.

Donlon’s professional career has been as a teacher and administrator in Capitol Region Education Council (CREC) magnet schools. Most recently, as principal of the Glastonbury East Hartford Magnet School, he helped develop and implement a STEM curriculum and NASA Explorer School designation for the pre-kindergarten – 5th grade school. He was named CREC Manager of the Year in 2015. Donlon is a past principal of the Public Safety Academy in Enfield (grades 6-12) and was a former coordinator of New School Development at CREC. He also taught at the Metropolitan Learning Center in Bloomfield before becoming an administrator.

“Dr. Donlon has worked in both the unique niche markets of magnet schools as well as a Regional Educational Service Center,” said LEARN Executive Director Kate Ericson. “I can’t imagine finding a more qualified or dynamic talent to join the LEARN team.”

A lifelong Connecticut resident, Donlon earned his undergraduate and Master’s degrees from UConn and his doctorate in Educational Leadership from Central Connecticut State University. He resides in East Hartford with his family and his children attend a magnet school.

With 16 years of experience working for a fellow Regional Educational Service Center, Donlon said he understands the capacity of magnet schools to engage students and families through their themes. Equally important, such programs work to close achievement gaps and provide a chance for all students to succeed.

“Magnet schools bring together students from diverse backgrounds to learn beside each other, as well as from one another,” Donlon said. “Those learning opportunities are valuable to children and educators alike.”



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