Education Speaker Series


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The Education Speaker Series (ESS) returns for the 2017 – 2018 school year with an exciting mix of programs related to raising healthy children and young adults. The Education Speaker Series is presented by the Piedmont Unified School District and Piedmont Adult School, with the generous support of the Piedmont Parents Network, ESS Speaker Circle, and individual contributors.

Registration & Reservations

  • The full series is currently available for PUSD families and the general public via the Piedmont Store.
  • Individual tickets: At this time, tickets for individual events cannot be purchased in advance.


All events will be from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm.


All events will be held at Piedmont High School (800 Magnolia Ave, Piedmont)
unless otherwise noted.

More Information

Please email


2017-2018 Series

SEPTEMBER 12: The Spirited Child
Dr. Mary Sheedy Kurcinka is a parent educator and the best-selling author of Raising Your Spirited Child plus Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles and Sleepless in America: Is Your Child Misbehaving or Missing Sleep? Dr. Kurcinka incorporates child development research into her talks to help explain common behaviors and provides insights and practical strategies for parenting.

OCTOBER 18: Raising Kids to Thrive*
Dr. Ken Ginsburg, a nationally known pediatrician in adolescent medicine at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, is the author of Building Resilience in Children and Teens and Raising Kids to Thrive. His work focuses on how building the seven “Cs” – competence, confidence, connection, character, contribution, coping, and control – helps parents raise successful kids.
(*This event is on a Wednesday.)

NOVEMBER 7: Changing the Game in Youth Sports

John O’Sullivan writes and lectures about nurturing positive, healthy, and supportive relationships between parents and their young athletes. He is the founder and CEO of the Changing the Game Project and the author of Changing the Game: The Parent’s Guide to Raising Happy, High Performing Athletes, and Giving Youth Sports Back to our Kids.

JANUARY 30: The Importance of a Liberal Arts Education
Dr. Brian Rosenberg, President of Macalester College, champions the value of a liberal arts education to establish critical thinking skills that are essential to being a good citizen and necessary in every field of study and occupation. Dr. Rosenberg is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations’ Higher Education Working Group and the Presidents’ Trust of the Association of American Colleges and Universities. (This event will be in the PHS Student Center.)

FEBRUARY 13: Teen Use of Tobacco and Marijuana

Dr. Danielle Ramo is a clinical psychologist and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at UCSF with expertise in adolescent and young adult substance abuse. Dr. Ramo will talk about teen drug use trends in the Bay Area, share her research and clinical expertise, and provide tips on how to have productive, thoughtful conversations with your teen.

FEBRUARY 27: The Myth of the Math Brain (rescheduled from January 23)
Dr. Jo Boaler is a professor of mathematics education at Stanford and the co-founder of Youcubed, a project that seeks to improve math teaching for all children. Her book, Experiencing School Mathematics, won the Outstanding Book of the Year award for education in Britain. She is also the author of Mathematical Mindsets and What’s Math Got to Do with It?
(Note: This event will take place in the Ellen Driscoll auditorium at Havens Elementary school, 323 Highland Ave.)

MARCH 27: The Hidden Logic of Teenagers
Back by popular demand, Dr. Mike Riera – the head of the Brentwood School in Los Angeles and former head of Redwood Day School in Oakland – will share his insights about the challenges of both being a teen, and parenting a teen, particularly in the age of technology. He has written or co-written five books, including Uncommon Sense for Parents With Teenagers and Staying Connected To Your Teenager.