Linda Cliatt-Wayman is a passionate educator with an unwavering belief in the potential of all children. Her leadership as a high school principal in North Philadelphia has been featured by TED, ABC World News Tonight and Nightline.
Wayman grew up in poverty in North Philadelphia, where she experienced firsthand the injustice being perpetrated against poor students in their education. She has dedicated her career and her life to ending that injustice and to helping students succeed in school and beyond.
Wayman earned her BA from Kutztown University and her MA from St. Joseph’s University. She spent 20 years as a special education teacher before becoming a principal of FitzSimons High School in 2003. Wayman led a turnaround of FitzSimons from a school known for low levels of academic achievement and high levels of violence to a safe space focused on learning.
In 2005 she was given the opportunity to open The Young Women’s Leadership School at Rhodes High School. Once again, Wayman led a turnaround at Rhodes. Before she arrived, only 3% of students were proficient in math and 9% were proficient in reading. By holding students and staff alike to high expectations, providing intense professional development to her staff, building a strong leadership team, and always believing in and loving her students, Wayman oversaw the growth of Rhodes so that the majority of students were proficient in math and reading and 94% of seniors were accepted into college.
Wayman spent two years as Assistant Superintendent of High Schools for the School District of Philadelphia, directly overseeing all of the district’s 52 high schools. But when the district decided to merge her two former schools, FitzSimons and Rhodes, with another North Philadelphia High School, Strawberry Mansion, Wayman knew she had to step in to lead the merged school as principal. At Strawberry Mansion, not far from the North Philadelphia neighborhood where she grew up, Wayman and her team are once again proving what is possible for low-income children. Test scores have improved every year since Wayman took over, and the school was removed from the federal Persistently Dangerous Schools list for the first time in five years.
Wayman’s powerful leadership and the success of her students have caused people to take notice. Diane Sawyer and her team spent an entire school year documenting Wayman’s efforts, which were featured on both ABC World News Tonight and Nightline. She was named a KYW Gamechanger and won the 2014 Philadelphia Magazine Trailblazer Award and 2014 Philadelphia Maneto Award.
Wayman has shared her story with audiences across the country. In May 2015, she delivered a TED Talk at TED Women in which she described her loving, fierce leadership for children. Other speaking engagements have included the Pennsylvania Conference for Women, the Massachusetts Conference for Women, the Raytheon Leadership Conference, the Cancer Treatment Center for America Luncheon, and the Exelon Women Luncheon, and the Dallas Bar Association.
Above all, Linda Cliatt-Wayman is driven by her love for her students. She ends her announcements to her students every morning the same way: “Remember, if no one told you they loved you today, remember I do and I always will.”
How to book Linda Cliatt-Wayman?
Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like Linda Cliatt-Wayman for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers. Fill out a booking request form for Linda Cliatt-Wayman, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for Linda Cliatt-Wayman or any other celebrity of your choice.
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Linda Cliatt-Wayman is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics including Education Motivation, Education Policy and Women in Leadership. The estimated speaking fee range to book Linda Cliatt-Wayman for live events is $10,000 - $20,000, and for virtual events Below $10,000. Linda Cliatt-Wayman generally travels from Philadelphia, PA, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Erin Gruwell, Eduardo Briceño and Kanya Balakrishna. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Linda Cliatt-Wayman for an upcoming event.
In this 2013 image, Strawberry Mansion High School principal Linda Cliatt- Wayman talks with Malaysia, then a sophomore at the school. ABC News. Share.
On her first day as a principal in a North Philadelphia school, Linda Cliatt-Wayman was determined to lay down the law and set clear expectations. She called her students into the auditorium and told them how things would go at that school. But one voice interrupted her. “Miss,” called out a girl named Ashley, “why do you keep calling this a school? This is not a school.” The question resonated with her, says Cliatt-Wayman. After 20 years of teaching in the same impoverished North Philly schools where she’d gotten her own education, Ashley had gotten straight to the heart of what she’d never quite been able to articulate.
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