A former gang member, Dr. Iris Lafferty changed her life through hard choices, support, and education.  Iris is a wife of 23 years, mother of two teens, university professor, and parenting coach. Iris is recognized as the leading expert on parenting school-wise children.

With three graduate degrees from Harvard (Masters in Counseling & Consulting, Masters in Technology in Education, and Doctorate in Human Development and Education), Iris has enjoyed working in higher education, government, and private enterprise. She has consulted for Mattel, PBS, the Department of Education and numerous private schools. Her work has been published in Technology & Learning Magazine and currently has publications on learning and technology in press.

Iris mentors discouraged parents by showing them how to maximize their children’s academic experience using a fresh student-centric perspective. Having spent the past 25 years in the fields of psychology, education, and research, she shares effective strategies based on a balanced mix of theory and practice. Iris’ clients gain effective strategies to parent thriving, curious, and content school-aged children.

To help the reader understand the purpose of Maximum Student, it’s useful to know the inspiration gained from a challenging period of self-reflection and trying to discover the “why” behind the idea. Iris watched the Simon Sinek Ted Talk, read the Marla Tabaka article “What is your Why?” and this article by Margie Warrell: “Do You Know Your ‘Why’? 4 Questions to Find Your Purpose.”

And she answered some important questions:

What am I most passionate about?
Changing lives through education. Effecting positive change directly (student) or indirectly (parent) through education– specifically by teaching the skills to be successful in school. Education transformed Iris’ life. Growing up in southern California, a member of a school gang, fighting literally, she realizes to be successful academically, she had to get out. (Read more about Iris’ gang experience). Through personal experience, she knows that a bully can manifest itself in different forms — a person or obstacle. She understands that it takes courage and fortitude to overcome whatever “bullies” are holding us or our kids back from success. She understands the struggles with the internal demons of guilt and shame. She understands it’s not easy to reach our for help. She learned to “fight” symbolically for her education. She learned to stand up for herself, know how to team and who to team with. As a student, she learned to fight for herself as her own advocate. And now as a parent, she learned to fight for her kids as their advocate.

In what way is my business an extension of my passion?
Iris is driven by the desire to support students and parents who are stuck and going in the wrong direction but are capable of more and want to maximize their education through mass customization. This is the business of maximum student.

If I could make a difference for anyone, what would it be?
Maximize student’s potential in school – fighting through any negative circumstances or factors using the skills learned to change a student’s/family’s life.

What makes you come alive?
Being presented with an issue or issues that are holding someone back from reaching their potential in school, being able to identify it and provide solutions that help them overcome it. The satisfaction comes from knowing that Iris has helped someone maximize their abilities by helping them build their success traits.

What are your innate strengths?
Individualization. Instinctive ability to see each person’s unique qualities, differences, thought processes, learning style, motivation, and approach to relationships, etc.

Where do you add the greatest value?
Applying this individualization, education, research and knowledge to create resources and support that help students maximize their educational potential. Iris can see the greatest value is when applied to those MOST in need of change, whether it is suffering under learning disabilities or other circumstance that manifest as an obstacle to academic success.

How will you measure your life?
Iris has made a positive difference in this world through evangelizing educational advantage, through students and families whose lives have been improved from using her resources and support.

What is your Why?
To inspire positive behaviors that produce educational advantage.

Dr. Iris Lafferty and MaximumStudent.com offers products, membership, and coaching programs for the select group of parents who are willing and able to invest the time to insure their child’s educational success.