About Us


We help schools realize their visions and goals as they become exemplary organizations — places where students, teachers, and parents learn and work with their communities to create a hopeful, healthy future through excellent, purposeful, creative work.

We believe in the power of young people’s intelligence, creativity and innate understanding that all living things are interdependent and interconnected. We believe that all schools can be dynamic, engaging places where adults and children develop the knowledge, skills and values to create a healthy, hopeful future for themselves, their communities, and the planet. Our approach combines excellence in academic content and skills with real world projects. Our approach unites strong school cultures with community collaboration and authentic youth engagement.

We offer the following services singly or in combination.
• professional development that helps educators design & develop curricula
• coaching and consulting with school leaders and faculty
• strengths assessments for schools
• facilitation of meetings and collaborative processes
• collaboration in the design of school buildings, additions and renovations
We work in the areas of:
• sustainability education
• multidisciplinary, integrated curricula
• engaged, real world student work and products
• systems that support teacher collaboration and leadership
• school design: pedagogy, systems organization, and architecture

Meet Louise and Ashley




Louise Cadwell

M. Ed., Child Development and the Arts, Ph. D. Education
Co-founder of Cadwell Collaborative

Louise is an education consultant whose work is informed and animated by thirty years of experience in early childhood through higher education. Her areas of expertise include:
• child development
• curriculum and professional development
• integrated arts education
• environmental education
• organizational learning

As a teacher, researcher, and consultant, Louise works with schools throughout North America, as well as internationally.

From 2002-2008, Louise was the Coordinator of Curriculum and Professional Development at The College School in St. Louis. During this time she worked with the administrative team and faculty to successfully implement shared and focused professional development, curriculum mapping, formative and authentic assessment, faculty research groups, and a school-wide parent partnership.

After a year as a fellow in the acclaimed schools of Reggio Emilia, Italy in 1991-1992, Louise served as the lead consultant for a Danforth Foundation funded program to study and adapt the Reggio approach in St. Louis schools from 1992-1995. She worked as studio teacher at The College School and consultant with The St. Michael School and Clayton Schools' Family Center from 1992-2002. These three schools, recognized internationally as exemplary schools for the interpretation of the Reggio approach, hosted yearly conferences and institutes for national and international visitors starting in 1994.

While working on her Masters degree, Louise lived for a year in Great Britain studying the British Integrated Day. As a third grade teacher and art teacher in Maryland and Vermont, Louise developed dynamic, integrated and experiential curricula.

Louise's recent work focuses on Education for Sustainability as it leads children and teachers to imagine and create a healthy and hopeful future. In the last decade, Systems Thinking and Appreciative Inquiry have transformed her way of working with teachers and children.

Louise earned a M. Ed. In 1976 from Lesley University and received her Ph. D. from Union Institute and University in 1996.

Louise is the author of:
• Bringing Reggio Emilia Home: An Innovative Approach to Early Childhood Education
• Bringing Learning to Life: The Reggio Approach to Early Childhood Education

Louise is co-editor with Lella Gandini, Lynn Hill and Charles Schwall of:
• In the Spirit of the Studio:Learning from the Atelier of Reggio Emilia

Louise Cadwell serves on the Advisory Council for The Center for Children's Learning of the Portland Children's Museum in Portland, Oregon.


Ashley Cadwell

M.A. Literature, M. Ed. Administration
Co-founder of Cadwell Collaborative

Ashley is an education consultant whose areas of expertise include:
• integrated, multidisciplinary curriculum development
• faculty collaboration and leadership
• parent and community involvement
• building and school renovation and design

For three decades, Ashley and his colleagues in Vermont and St. Louis have pioneered best practices that lead toward vital new ways of learning and living in schools. Ashley has worked with schools throughout North America as well as internationally. Much of his work derives from his connections with progressive education and the schools of Reggio Emilia, Italy. Innovative school building design that supports curricula, organization and community has been a recurring theme in his work.

Ashley spent the 1991-1992 school year with his family in Emilia, Italy where he observed the internationally renowned municipal early childhood program. From 1992-2008 Ashley served as Headmaster of The St. Michael School in Clayton, Missouri, a preprimary through eighth grade independent school that has achieved acclaim for their adaptation of the Reggio approach, pioneering its extension into the elementary grades. He is a contributing author to In the Spirit of the Studio: Learning from the Atelier of Reggio Emilia.

Ashley earned a Masters in Literature from Middlebury College in 1980 and a Masters in Education Administration from the University of Vermont in 1982. In 1973 he co-founded The Green Mountain Valley School, a college preparatory school for ski racers training for the U.S. Olympic Team, where he served as Humanities teacher, Academic Director and Headmaster. From 1984 through 1986 he was a Capital Gifts Officer for Middlebury College. In 1986 Ashley incorporated Villages of Vermont, where he specialized in village planning and single-family home design and construction.