Degrees and Certifications:
Ms. Kiersten Schnacke
I am very grateful to have the opportunity to continue to serve the families and community of Idlewild Elementary as principal. I began my career with MSCS in 1999 as a seventh grade Social Studies teacher. After several years in the classroom, I realized that I wanted to continue to make a difference in education, but from a leadership perspective. In 2006, I applied and was accepted into the New Leaders for New Schools program to train to move into administration.
At the conclusion of this program, I completed a one-year principal residency at Bellevue Middle School followed by two consecutive assistant principal positions at Fairview and Cordova Middle Schools over the next three years. In 2010, I made the transition to elementary education where I served as Principal of Shady Grove Elementary for thirteen years. I finally made my way back to Midtown, my home and community, and to Idlewild Elementary in 2021 where I feel privileged to be a part of such an iconic and historic Memphis school.
Two of my most memorable educational life experiences were completing a semester long Outward Bound course and receiving a Fulbright Scholarship as a teacher. Both programs were developed to enhance experiential learning in authentic yet very different ways. The Outward Bound course focused on learning in nature and the Fullbright experience focused on immersion in a foreign country where I traveled to China to learn about Chinese history, culture, and education at Normal University in Wuhan.
I graduated from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Anthropology, a Master of Education from Christian Brothers’ University, and a Master of Science in Educational Leadership, also from Christian Brother’s University.
I am the proud Mom of a teenager, Poppy, who reminds me everyday how important it is to consider the whole child when it comes to education. Being a parent continues to reinforce my educational philosophy that all children are unique and have an equally unique story. As educators, we are charged with the task of recognizing these unique gifts and building a bridge of understanding and learning to ensure our students’ success.