Natalie Szakacs

Executive Program Specialist and Tennessee Team Leader

Natalie Szakacs works with district and school partners to increase their impact on instructional excellence and student achievement. Through the School Improvement Solutions partnership, she believes educational leaders thrive when they are part of a reflective culture, led by a collective leadership team. The structure builds teacher leaders positioned to serve as instructional coaches, and internally increases instructional excellence. Natalie believes growth happens when we are shoulder to shoulder with our partners, embedded in the analysis of student work.

Natalie has also led multiple districts in their quest to implement NIET's highest educational standards, TAP: the System for Teacher and Student Advancement. She admires school leaders and teachers that gather together to commit to the four TAP domains. She has witnessed the life-changing results for students. Children become immersed in high-quality learning experiences and reach achievement goals. 

Prior to NIET, she worked with the Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning, University of Indianapolis, as an Indiana TAP regional coordinator, developing training and supporting TAP implementation. She completed 29 years in Indiana public education in a variety of roles, including curriculum coordinator, high ability coordinator, elementary art director and classroom teacher.

Natalie earned a master's degree in education from Indiana University and a bachelor's degree in elementary education from Truman University in Missouri.

 Natalie  Szakacs

Why are you passionate about working at NIET? 

Working with NIET partners is inspiring. It gives me the opportunity to be side by side with committed educators, honoring their willingness to grow and collaborate as they improve learning opportunities for their students.

What was your favorite subject in school and why?

Art classes were my safe place where teachers encouraged creativity and problem-solving. I am forever grateful for the opportunities and feedback my art teachers were able to provide.

What do you do in your free time?

I am easily distracted by a remodeling or design project. In a matter of minutes I could be surrounded by tools and design paper. It is relaxing and rewarding to see the finished product.