Shawnta is a married mother of identical twin boys. As an Indiana native, she attended school in two Indianapolis school districts; she attended Indianapolis Public Schools for two years and completed her education in Lawrence Township Schools. Her sons entered kindergarten during the 2016-2017 school year, so she not only navigates Indianapolis schools from the educator's perspective but also the parent's perspective. She has been an educator for over 15 years. Although Shawnta has worked in the urban traditional public school setting for the majority of her career, she student taught in rural Indiana, worked in the suburbs, and in public charter schools.
Currently, she is the Editor-in-Chief and writer for Indy K12, an education consultant, and CEO and Co-Founder of Brave Brothers Books, LLC. Previously, she served as a middle school academic dean, an elementary library/media specialist, an adjunct college professor, an elementary and high school literacy coach, a middle and high school English/Language Arts teacher, and K-5 English as a New Language teacher. She is also the winner of the 2019 Indiana Black Expo Excellence in Education Journalism Award. In her spare time, she is an urban gardener and writes about her harvest to table journey at www.gardenershicole.com. Her Indy K12 articles can be viewed here. To learn more about Shawnta, visit www.educatorbarnes.com or follow her on Twitter @educatorbarnes.