Francesca Gerard is the Training Manager of Arc Educates. She knew she wanted to become an educator from an early age. Francesca pursued diverse outlets to develop her skills as an educator through a variety of professional experiences. Each assignment afforded her an opportunityto prepare students with different backgrounds and needs, successfully thrive in an exponentially diverse world.
Francesca has a professional passion for working within marginalized and oppressed communities. Francesca earned her undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of South FL and a master’s degree in Curriculum & Instruction from Barry University. Francesca pursued these different specializations, due to her strong belief that mental wellness is directly linked to student achievement and social, emotional, and behavioral development. Her goal is to continue to be a change agent and make learning fun, accessible, and meaningful.
Francesca’s role at Arc Broward, will allow her to continue to pursue her passion to commit time and resources to address the mental health for those she serves. Francesca believes that people who receive appropriate mental health supports have improved academic achievement. While she is not dedicating time to her work, Francesca continues her public service, by being a proud fitness instructor. She motivates others in their health and wellness goals because health is the most valuable and precious for every individual.
Heather Burton joined the Arc Educates team as a Training Coordinator in 2016. She has over 15 years of experience in education where she worked primarily with at-promise, disadvantaged youth. Her experience in education extended beyond the classroom including student recruitment, retention and academic coaching. Heather brings impressive expertise with her to the Learning Institute including the successful development and training of school faculty, staff as well as the creation of an apprenticeship program for new teachers.
Heather’s significant customer service and sales experience is also noteworthy. While working for a large regional bank, her customer service savvy and problem solving skills led directly to the retention of a nearly lost, million dollar client account. Because of her insightful actions, Heather was duly recognized by her employer and received a promotion. At that point, she then began working within the financial services sector of the bank and continued to excel in her new position.
Heather has a B.A. in elementary education from Florida Atlantic University and an A.S. in business administration from Broward Community College. She is also ESOL endorsed and certified in secondary mathematics by the Florida Department of Education.