English department head: Tara Dolezal

Tara Dolezal graduated from Progressive and she has returned to head its English department. A graduate of NYU, Tara originally planned to major in psychology, and was only one course shy of a degree in that field.   She followed her heart, however, and decided to switch to English.  After studying under internationally acclaimed poets, authors, and editors, and being accepted into the Master Fiction Class taught by Orange Prize winner Zadie Smith, author of White Teeth, Tara graduated early with a degree in English and American Literature and Creative Writing.

Ms. Tara teaches not only Middle School English, but also her passion for English and the classics through her lessons. She loves changing expectations for seemingly antiquated writers by making the reading relatable and very much alive. In that vein, her favorite unit to teach is Shakespeare, and she strives in her lessons to teach not only love of English but a love for learning. She has worked at Progressive School since 2011 and is a strong advocate for the philosophy of the school. Her favorite writers include T.S. Elliot, Walt Whitman, and Shakespeare. She is a patron of the arts and loves to see Shakespeare in the Park every summer. She also enjoys watching movies and running marathons in her free time.

Tara has been a lifelong vegetarian, meditator, and yoga practitioner. She reads more than 100 books a year! She loves animals, and has spent time volunteering at animal shelters.