Janet's Journey in Education

Hi! I'm Janet Newberry. I’ve spent more than 30 years in the education arena. I have served as a teacher (grades K-12) and an administrator in both public and private schools.


I’ve had a front row seat watching children both struggle and grow—and watching how their families respond to their struggles. Family responses always have a significant impact on whether children learn to move through their struggle and grow up—or not.


About ten years ago, I needed to find out why some children struggled well and matured in life—and others didn’t. I read and continue to do a great deal of research.


I focused my research in three areas: educational philosophy, theology, and neuroscience and communication pathology. I do not pretend to be a scientist or a theologian, but the connections between how God designed us to work and how we really do work are both inspiring and practical.

Here's a short summary of my research:

When we aim at the target of performance, relationships and maturity suffer.

But when we aim at the target of building relationships of trust and supporting maturity, performance goes off the charts.

I've seen miracles happen!

When I applied my research in school settings and in my consulting practice, I saw MIRACLES HAPPEN. My work encourages students and families to live lives of CONNECTION, INSPIRATION, and INTEGRITY:

  • CONNECTION in safe relationships offers strength and love and supports maturity.

  • INSPIRATION offers real power to move us in the direction of deeply satisfying lives.

  • INTEGRITY is identity: “I know who I am and can make choices based on identity and conviction—instead of emotion or opportunity.” 


Meet Doug

This is my husband, Doug. We were married in 2012; together we have four daughters and one son. The grandchildren just keep coming—much to our delight! We live in a 27′Airstream Flying Cloud, traveling our United States of America, repurposing education, one conversation at a time. We’d love to sit at the table and chat with you.


Doug and I have long conversations sometimes—retelling each other parts of our story that led us here:

Doug had a long career in the pharmaceutical industry. He also spent time in the financial industry. He did well. There were hoops to jump through, target goals to reach, and performance objectives to meet. He did. As he spent years in leadership in that industry—he handed those hoops and targets and objectives to others.  He was good at helping others jump.

I spent more than 30 years in the educational industry—in public and private schools. I did well. There were hoops to jump through, target goals to reach, and performance objectives to meet.  I did.  As I spent years in leadership in that industry—I handed those hoops and targets and objectives to others. I was good at helping others jump.

During those years—we did all that with our children, too.  We did it in church.  Hoops, targets, objectives.  Milestones, trophies, grade point averages, Bible studies, connect groups, community service, jumping. And then we found a better way.

We found hope. Acceptance. Belonging. 

We found love. We found what it was like to be known. We found vulnerability from others who’d give us the privilege of knowing them, too. 

We noticed that love and belonging lasted long enough to build a safe place to fail.  We noticed that a safe place to fail was a safe place to dream.


Join the Conversation


So when Doug and I have these long conversations—we don’t say, “Remember when we got 100 on that test… or straight A’s on our report card?” Instead we’re gathering and marinating in and investing in relationships—and making memories.  

We'd love to chat with you. Come meet us at our table. Listen to our LOVE IS FEARLESS podcast!

As we step into a leadership role at John 15 Academy, we have no hoops, targets, or objectives to hand out—but we do have stories to share. We’re willing to be vulnerable about both the good and the painful parts of our lives; and invite you to be vulnerable, too.


Our stories include how we’re trusting love to heal our hurtshow we’re trusting others to help us grow. We’re eager to share lovewhen you know us enough to trust us.  

Learn more about John 15 Academy

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on how to help your child 

learn to struggle well.