THOMAS BROCK, PhD
Dr. Brock is a nationally recognized educational leader. He served for eight years as principal of Whitney, a public 7th through 12th grade high school in California. While he was principal Whitney earned the U.S. Department of Education Blue Ribbon National Recognition award, the California Distinguished School award, a National Lighthouse School award, and the Intel 21st Century School of Distinction Award for Academic Excellence. During each of his years of leadership Whitney achieved the highest Academic Performance Index of any school in the state. Newsweek names Whitney as one of its twenty “elite” schools on its list of the nation’s best 200 schools. Based on AP scores, the CollegeBoard stated in its annual report to the nation that Whitney has the best AP Physics and the best AP Calculus courses in the world.
In his book about Whitney, School of Dreams, author Ed Humes calls Dr. Brock an “educational visionary”; Intel Corporation invited Tom to give the first address at its inaugural Educational Visionaries Conference in Washington D.C. Tom also shared his vision in the Key Note address to the International Conference on Moral Education hosted by the Chinese government at Beijing Experimental High School.
Dr. Brock’s educational background includes a BA in English from California State University; two Master’s Degrees from the University of Southern California (Educational Administration and Counseling Psychology); and a doctorate in Psychology from United States International University.
In his early years as an educator, Dr. Brock was a Program Director (junior and senior high school club programs, summer camps) for the YMCA, the first counselor for the Lennox School District, and a Middle School Principal in Redondo Beach, California. During his years as a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist he founded and directed the Teen-Life Connection in‐patient program for adolescents at Whittier Presbyterian Hospital and the Back on Track outpatient therapeutic school at Park Place Center.
His articles on the treatment of adolescent substance abuse and on the teaching of parenting skills have been published by Aspen Press and have appeared in both journal and textbook form.
After reviewing the research and studying the professional development process at more than thirty secondary schools, Tom and Mike Robinson created the Metis Leadership Group, an organization of educators and psychologists, to distill the wisdom of those two fields and deliver practical applications for classroom teachers, principals, and leaders in education. Their passion is building a culture of achievement for school children throughout the U.S.
Michael Robinson began his education career in 1965 as a research associate in a US Office of Education project to determine the “Effectiveness of the Consensual Approach to Vocational Curriculum Development” conducted jointly by Trenton State College and the New Jersey Department of Education. From there Robinson became curriculum coordinator, lead teacher for basic skills and, subsequently, Director of Instruction (Principal) at the Newark Skills Center, a NJ DOE career center for adults where the first individualized basic skills learning laboratory in New Jersey was established and the effective practices of the Newark Skills Center were transmitted to two maximum security prisons in the form of the State’s first vocational instruction programs in such prisons.
That assignment led to a similar position at the state’s Center for Occupational Education, Experimentation, and Demonstration, an experimental career-focused school which student body came from Newark and surrounding community high schools. Students were sent to this school as an alternative to dropping out or being expelled. During Robinson’s tenure over 71% of the Center’s senior students went on to 2 and 4 year higher education or military service. It was the beginning of his quest to design and develop systemic learning models using the technology of the day.
In 1980 Robinson became vice president of Prep International and headed a team of educators who set up career and vocational programs in Central and South America as well as in the Middle East and Europe. In 1981 he and Joanne Moy established Princeton Assessment & Training Systems, Inc. and have operated it since that time. During that period of time Robinson developed PerformancePath, an efficient manner of conducting job-task analyses, performance test design and on-the-job training program design in business and industry. Companies wishing to attain ISO certification have used PerformancePath extensively. Robinson and two others developed the JERMI learning model for maturing learners. The model was adopted as the structure for a web-based, career-focused academics program.
Mike is one of the three designers of The Star Academy, dropout prevention and acceleration model used extensively in South Carolina and now in Arkansas, Missouri, Florida, Texas, New Jersey, Georgia, and Alabama. Two programs using that model have been awarded the National Drop-out Prevention Center’s prestigious Crystal Star Award. He has recently headed evaluation teams in projects designing tools to evaluate the effectiveness of Career Tech Education in local districts and the Educational and Economic Development in South Carolina for the South Carolina Department of Education.
Robinson has spoken to groups in formal and informal venues throughout the country on issues surrounding the role of technology-driven systemic models of learning often sponsored by Intel and the Center for Digital Education.
Mike and Dr. Thomas Brock have created the Metis Leadership Group as the outgrowth of their development of programs that address the needs of students, teachers, and school-level leaders relative to positive school culture. Their work is the subject of this web site.