This community case discussion - in partnership with the Westport League of Women Voters - will give Westport adults the opportunity to enjoy the same classroom experience as Staples High School students. The community discussion will be moderated by Drew Coyne and Suzanne Kammerman. Participants will examine the proper role of the federal government in relation to the states from the perspective of a delegate to the 1787 Constitutional Convention. Those who attend will read the case in advance and take part in a discussion with the moderators and other participants about James Madison, the "Federal Negative" and the Making of the US Constitution.
The Case Method Institute for Education and Democracy is an independent nonprofit organization based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, dedicated to improving high school history and civics education throughout the United States. The Institute grew out of the Case Method Project, a pilot program launched at Harvard Business School in 2015 by Professor David Moss. The pilot program worked with high school teachers nationwide to bring the signature teaching approach at Harvard Business School—the case method—to U.S. history, government, and civics classrooms, enabling high school students to train for active citizenship in the same way professional school students train for leadership in business and law. As part of the program, high school teachers received access to a set of twenty-two cases on the History of American Democracy, originally developed by Professor Moss for Harvard undergraduates and business school students, along with teaching materials and ongoing support to help them introduce case method teaching into their classrooms. Today, the project is in 48 states, and 115 League of Women Voters chapters from 33 states have nominated teachers to participate since 2019, including Staples High School teachers Drew Coyne and Suzanne Kammerman.
Community Partner: League of Women Voters of Westport
Suzanne Kammerman has been a teacher at Staples High School since 2007 where she currently teaches A.P. U.S. Government and Politics and U.S. Government. In addition, she is the teacher/coach of the We the People team which has competed at the national level in five of the last eight years. Suzanne is the recipient of the American Lawyer's Alliance Teacher of the year and the Civics First Richards-Shedd Award for Outstanding Teaching. She received her BA in Political Science from Union College and her MA in American Studies from the Universiteit van Amsterdam. Suzanne has been working with the Harvard Case Method Institute since 2019.
Drew Coyne has worked with the Harvard Case Method Institute since 2019. He uses a variety of cases at Staples High School, where he currently leads courses in AP Economics, US History Honors, and Current Issues: U.S. Media & Politics. Drew was selected at the 2022 Connecticut Patricia Behring Teacher of the Year and was honored as a 2021 University of Chicago Outstanding Educator. Beyond the classroom, Drew works as an Educational Consultant with PREMINENTE Counseling and serves on Lambda Legal’s ConnecticutCares Host Committee. He is a graduate of Cornell University and Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education.