Staff‎ > ‎

Luke Janka

Luke is excited to join the Lyons' Community School this fall as an assistant principal. A career New York City public educator, Luke began teaching 12th grade English in 2000 at Brooklyn College Academy, an alternative school in Flatbush, Brooklyn, before transferring in 2002 to Humanities Preparatory Academy, a small progressive high school in Manhattan. In 2008, Luke left the classroom and worked as a leadership and instructional coach for a network of 22 schools, serving some of the neediest students in Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx. As an coach, Luke provided direct leadership support and strategic planning, instructional coaching, data analysis, and teacher team development for six schools. Eager to get back to school-based work, Luke joined the staff of The Urban Assembly School for Green Careers, one of the school's he'd coached, as the assistant principal in 2011.

Guided by the principles of John Dewey, Paolo Freire, Maria Montessori, and Ted Sizer, Luke believes that students learn best when classrooms and schools are structured to enable them to take responsibility for their own learning, and, also, that authentic learning is a social process requiring students to engage in cooperative inquiry, perspective-shifting discourse, and the free exchange of ideas and questions.

Luke is a National Board Certified Teacher in English, holds a Bachelor of Science in English Education from New York University's School of Education, and a Masters of Education in School Leadership and School Development from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Luke spends most of his free time with his wife and their two children, playing zombies, lightsaber-dueling, making up songs about dinosaurs, and defending waffles over pancakes (the kids always pick pancakes...). 

Luke can be reached at luke(at)