Gabriel Nakashima, founder of the Charter Substitute Teacher Network (CSTN), is among the 2016 Forbes 30 Under 30 in Education. Recognized for his leadership and innovation, Nakashima created a network that effectively vets high quality substitute teachers by using rigorous sourcing and matching analytics. Currently a 320-employee operation, CSTN is in schools across Chicago, Denver and more.
A graduate of the College of Education Institute for Teacher Education at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Nakashima earned his master of education degree in teaching (MEdT). He attributes the initial concept for the Charter Substitute Teacher Network to engaging discussions he had with Professor Fred Birkett in the MEdT program.
After teaching at Kamaile Academy in Waiʻanae, Nakashima focused his research on the increasingly alarming amount of time students spend with substitutes, particularly in high-needs communities. By the time these students reach 12th grade, he determined, they will have spent up to one year with substitute teachers—often a year of ineffective learning time because of a lack of continuity and appropriate placement.
“This award is humbling and exciting,” Nakashima said. “It has already begun to open doors that will enable me to contribute on a greater scale. I plan to take full advantage of these opportunities that will enable me to lead and contribute to our future generations at the highest level.”