Nelson Beaudoin

School Change Coach

Nelson H. Beaudoin is a school change coach with the Center for Secondary School Redesign (CSSR). Nelson served as lead coach in four of the schools in the i3 New England Network for Personalization and Performance. In that role, he supported the schools’ work by providing mentoring and targeted professional development. Nelson also worked across all thirteen schools in the i3 New England Network to support the development of student agency.

A thirty-seven year educator, Nelson retired as principal of Kennebunk (ME) High School in 2008. He led two high schools through successful Comprehensive School Reform Demonstration grants, where student participation, citizenship and leadership were used as leverage points to advance reform initiatives linked to Maine’s Promising Futures restructuring movement. Both high schools received national recognition for the work they did to make students relevant.  Nelson was selected as Maine’s 2000 NASSP Principal of the Year. He is the author of three books on educational leadership published by Eye on Education: Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone: Lessons for School Leaders (2004); Elevating Student Voice: How to Enhance Participation, Leadership and Citizenship (2005); and A School for Each Student: Personalization in a Climate of High Expectations (2008).

For Nelson, the most enduring impact of the i3 New England Network is the realization across all thirteen schools that student agency, and putting students in the center of their learning, provides outstanding results. He believes that the traction student voice, choice and involvement gained in these schools will be difficult to cancel out. As a long-time advocate for students, it is both affirming and energizing for Nelson to see student-centered practices take hold in a wide array of school settings.

Nelson holds a B.S. from the University of Maine, and a M.S. from Boston University. When not working in schools Nelson enjoys spending time with his family, bowling, golfing, and watching the sunsets come and go from his back porch. 

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