Powerful Learning Practice: Consulting

Global consultants on education, professional learning, and community building
Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach

Led by Powerful Learning Practice’s Chief Executive Officer, Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach, our consultants combine deep knowledge with practical experience to achieve results. We will exceed your expectations.

Our consulting focuses on our clients’ most critical issues and opportunities such as:

  • back to school and ongoing planning during COVID-19
  • creating strategies for digital transformation 
  • developing customized professional learning plans
  • collaborating with your leads on project design and implementation
  • determining strategies for best practice in blended learning environments
  • planning, organizing and implementing virtual conferences 
  • creating a training and implementation plan for your coaching team 
  • facilitating educational technology standards refresh
  • guiding the creation, timeline and ongoing development for building online learning communities 


Powerful Learning Practice works with local, national, and international schools and organizations to meet goals and keep deadlines with a smile.

Need help creating a new initiative or program?

Want us to work alongside you to optimize your organization’s existing talent?

Need help planning for or managing change and transformation?

Want someone to serve as a subcontractor on a grant proposal?

Work with us to make it happen.

Contact Sheryl at Sheryl@plpnetwork.com

Sheryl has the rare talent of being both an inspiring visionary and detailed implementer. She can take a high-level idea and turn it into a well-oiled machine without losing sight of the goals. This made Sheryl an an indispensable partner to the U.S. Department of Education in launching initiatives such as Connected Educator Month and Future Ready Leaders. Her collaborative leadership style and deep educational knowledge allows her to find solutions to the most complex educational challenges.

Richard Culatta

Chief Executive Officer, ISTE

When our district began refining its instructional vision in 2012, we turned to Powerful Learning Practices and Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach as a necessary first step to help lead and facilitate the planning and goal-setting, and to work with us as we designed and implemented Professional Learning Collaboratives (PD training) that were needed to connect our teachers and administrators across the curriculum and grade levels.

Here we are in 2016 and four years into the process and the support we have been given is the best in the business. They have provided leadership training, both online and face-to-face, and designed professional development specifically to transition WOISD to a ‘this century’ learning environment.

Mitzi Neely

Asst. Superintendent, White Oak ISD

I’ve had the pleasure to work closely with Sheryl over the last four years on Connected Educator Month and the Future Ready Leaders initiative. Sheryl has an unparalleled ability to keep track of both the big picture and the practical details. She is a creative, systems thinker with a compelling vision of where education ought to be going, but she is simultaneously attuned to the realities of politics and resources and able to navigate both in ways that yield tangible results while remaining aligned to that transformative vision. One of the hardest working people I’ve ever met, she is a true collaborator who brings out the best in others and comes through for the team even under the toughest conditions. Her contributions have been indispensable to the success of the most impactful projects I have led in recent years.

Darren Cambridge

Director of Policy Research and Development at National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE)

Featured Projects

Future Ready Leaders

Future Ready Leaders

U.S. Office of Educational Technology

We searched throughout the United States for school districts that exemplify the Future Ready initiative and captured their stories in a series of compelling videos. This project includes a Future Ready Rubric based on a systematic review of research, an online self-assessment, and a set of 50 three-minute videos aligned with the rubric. After taking the assessment, superintendents receive personalized professional learning – a playlist of videos that can be updated as they make progress toward their goals. This dynamic PD will propel superintendents and their school districts toward becoming Future Ready. Learn more

Connected Educator Month

Connected Educator Month

American Institutes for Research

Connected Educator Month networks educators and education stakeholders through connected professional learning experiences worldwide. Over the past four years, millions of educators and others around the world have participated in hundreds of professional development and other educational opportunities, offering highly distributed, diverse, and engaging activities to all stakeholders at all levels.

Future Ready Schools

Future Ready Schools: Empowering Educators through Professional Learning Toolkit

U.S. Office of Educational Technology

This toolkit provides leaders with a multi-step decision-making process, practical tools, and numerous examples for setting a trajectory of positive change, moving assertively toward achievement of student learning and improvement goals. The toolkit recognizes that improvements in student learning are related to improvements in educator practice and that strengthened practice is supported by research- and standards-based professional learning. Learn more

Selected Clients

Departments of Education

  • Alberta Department of Education
  • Belize Ministry of Education
  • BOCES in NY
  • Department of Education and Early Childhood Development in Victoria, Australia
  • Department of Education in Western Australia
  • Georgia Department of Education
  • Guam Department of Education
  • New York City Department of Education
  • Pennsylvania Department of Education
  • United States Department of Education
  • Office of Educational Technology
  • Virginia Department of Education

For Profit

  • Education Week
  • Knowledge Delivery Systems
  • Solution Tree
  • Vulcan Productions

Corporate Foundations

  • IBM- Transitions to Teaching
  • Intel Education
  • Microsoft Partners in Learning


  • American Institutes for Research
  • Alabama Best Practices Center
  • Alberta Regional Consortium
  • Carnegie Foundation
  • Center for Teaching Quality
  • CORE in New Zealand
  • George Lucas Foundation (edutopia)
  • Ideas Lab in Melbourne
  • National Education Association
  • National Science Foundation
  • Oberkotter Foundation
  • Project Hope
  • Stanford Research Institute

College and University

  • University of Wisconsin
  • Virginia Community College System
  • The College of William and Mary

Schools and Districts

  • Archdiocese of Philadelphia
  • Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District
  • Edmonton Catholic Schools
  • El Paso Independent School District
  • Sandvika High School (Norway)
  • White Oak Independent School District

What they're saying

The PLP experience forced me to stretch and push my thinking out of my comfort zone. It encouraged me to think of ways to “push out” what we were doing in school with technology and connect with other schools and educators. PLP infused an incredible amount of energy into our PLP team and also into our school. We made great strides with working towards total integration of technology into all of our curriculum and it was the PLP experience that spurred us on.
Pat O'Donnell

Principal, St. Patrick's Elementary School, Malvern, PA

The PLP community pushes the boundaries. Actually, that’s not quite accurate. We, as individuals and as colleagues, are encouraged and supported to push our own boundaries – to become ‘natural’ learners similar to what we were like as children before formalized school. PLP is a community where we can follow our passions, engage in questioning our understandings of education and learning, challenge others and be challenged by ‘critical friends’. It encourages us to be transparent about our learning – our wonderings, frustrations, ahas, questions, ‘thinking aloud’, revelations, and classroom practice. The Powerful Learning Practice community is daunting in its wealth of information – both ‘stuff’ and people resources – but, in that way, it is not unlike the ‘real’ world. The real world is rich with complexity and we struggle all our lives to make sense within it. PLP is similar.

One learns to be in the community with ‘intention’, with purpose and passion. This allows ‘ideas to find us’ as Eleanor Duckworth might say. It’s not always comfortable – but then ‘cognitive & emotional dissonance’ are at the heart of learning. If you want to learn how to best meet the needs of students in this era, this differentiated environment affords the best opportunity I know.

Peter Skillen

21st Century Specialist, YMCA of Greater Toronto, Ontario

I participated in PLP community in 2011 in Victoria as part of the DEECD (Education department Victoria). I was a wonderful opportunity to build a community of like minded individuals and to network to develop and challenge ideas, understandings and approaches to how we can best engage and support learning in 2012. I met amazing people both face to face and during online workshops and was inspired to ’embrace change in my teaching practice’ and to promote problem based learning as the key to engage learners in our school.

Sheryl, Will and all the gang involved were supportive and really encouraged you to think deeply, asking questions that promoted thinking and problem solving at a deeper level. Our wrap up ‘show case’ day was fantastic. It was inspiring to see the growth and development of the community of PLPpeep’s across Victoria.

If you have a chance to get involved, I’d say, “Go for it!” I’m glad I did.

Trish Dower

Yuille Park Community College, Victoria

I think your leadership was remarkable. You are both so credible and knowledgeable. While at first the problem based learning was mucky for me, I look back at it as a wonderful experience. I am so empowered by the experience.
Patti Rodger

Middle school teacher, Alberta, Canada

What drew me to PLP was the passion in the words Sheryl and Will used to describe the work they were doing. I had never heard of anything like this before, but it totally intrigued me as it felt part of that missing link in the work we are trying to do in education and professional development. Being an active participant in the PLP Canadian Cohort has provided me with relationships, PD, and a personal and professional understanding of teaching in the 21st Century. This experience has changed, moved, and inspired me to work on becoming the educator that our students need.
Margo Nygard

Learning Services Coordinator, Chinook's Edge School Division, Alberta, Canada

The PLP team has done a wonderful job drawing on theory, research, and evidence-based best practice and in creating a framework for professional development for educators. The guided tour provides a clear and coherent picture of what the network offers and how participants will participate. The timeline of the courses and the sequencing of the learning experiences enable participants to build capacity as well as trust, focus on authentic learning projects, and communicate and share work within and beyond the network. Thank you!
Mary Rearick

Professor, Eastern Michigan University

PLP has pushed our independent school educators to think about professional development in ways that alight with 21st century values and ideas. The community continues to grow and we find invaluable resources in each other. If you’re just starting to develop your own online presence and looking for a place to team up with others like you as you navigate the web and strive to connect with a diverse group of educators, I recommend PLP.
Sheamus Burns

The Lawrenceville School, New Jersey

This community has helped me grow enormously. Whenever I need advice or an idea, I know I now have a huge group of wise and thoughtful educators to turn to. I also have learned from PLP how to work with students and teachers in ways that will help them grow as well. I don’t know what I would do without PLP and have a hard time imagining my professional life before my colleagues there came along. PLP is such an important resource for me — it is a key place where I learn and expect to learn for the rest of my professional life.
Susan Davis

Chinquapin Preparatory School, Texas

Work With Us

Whether you’re an individual educator who wants practical, affordable professional learning, a school administrator leading your school through digital conversion, or an organization that wants customized, community-based professional learning, we want to work with you.

Get in touch and let us know what you need so we can get started.

Get in touch.

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