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About the Penn Literacy Network

The Penn Literacy Network is a Pre-K to 12 professional development organization based at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education. We help school communities improve their teaching, learning, and assessment at every grade level across the curriculum. We offer courses, workshops, and coaching tailored to the needs of your district or education community.

What makes us different? Our courses and workshops are centered on educators talking with and learning from one another, using a co-constructionist framework. Combining research with practical applications, our ongoing courses meet every few weeks, allowing educators to try out activities in the classroom and reflect back on their experiences during the next meeting. 

Our aim is to help teams of educators use literacy practices in multiple subject areas, including English, math, social studies, science, and the arts, so that students become more productive and reflective learners.

How We Work

Penn Literacy Network tailors its approach to professional learning for your school or district to meet your unique goals, and offers professional development opportunities for early childhood, elementary, middle years, and secondary educators.

The work of the Penn Literacy Network is grounded in the research-based approach of the renowned late Penn GSE professor Morton Botel, who created “Four Lenses of Learning” and “Five Reading, Writing, and Talking Processes” that underpin PLN’s course offerings.

Since 1981, we have provided programs to more than 48,000 educators. Our long-standing partnerships with districts and schools contribute to the sustainable impact of our programming throughout our region and beyond. Having launched originally in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, we also partner with educators in Delaware, New York, Vermont, Florida, California, Ireland, Scotland, China, and India.

The PLN Team

Lara Paparo, Ed.D.
Executive Director

Bonnie Botel-Sheppard, Ed.D.
Senior Program Coordinator, PLN Co-Founder

Iris Sanchez
Business Manager

Nicole Masloff, M.Ed
Program Manager

Bernadette Mulligan-Janis, Ed.D.
Coaching Coordinator

Jenny Mills
Social-Emotional Teaching & Learning Coordinator

Heather Moschetta, Ph.D
Technology Coordinator

Anthony Carrodo
Math Coordinator

Michelle Shuai Shen, M.Ed
Asia-Pacific Program Liaison & Advisor