Teach Plus New Mexico Launches All-Alumni Policy Fellowship

Teach Plus New Mexico Launches All-Alumni Policy Fellowship

Albuquerque, NM, September 11, 2023 — Teach Plus, a national teacher leadership organization, has selected 15 demonstrably effective teachers and school leaders from around New Mexico for its first Alumni Policy Fellowship cohort. Unlike previous cohorts, the Teach Plus alumni in this group have successfully completed the policy, advocacy, research, and communications training with the Teach Plus program, preparing them to delve deeper into the issues of importance to New Mexico’s students and communities, including early literacy, quality data and assessments, and teacher leadership.

”Our educators are focused on students and improving their opportunities and outcomes,” said Teach Plus New Mexico Executive Director Hope Morales. “When we bring great leaders together who are committed to growing the potential of our educational system, great things happen.”

“As a Teach Plus Policy Fellow, my goal is to be an active participant in the improvement and transformation of New Mexico’s educational system,” said Robin Stevens, a middle school teacher in Hobbs and 2023-2024 Teach Plus Alumni Policy Fellow. “Together, through our influence on educational policy, we can put in place a high-quality data reporting system that is valuable and effective in supporting all learners while promoting accountability and communication to all stakeholders.”

The cohort members were selected through a rigorous application process that evaluated their commitment to equity and unwavering dedication to excellence in teaching to prepare all students to achieve their potential. The group includes a New Mexico Teacher of the Year, a school board member, and leaders in their districts and charter schools, hailing from rural, urban and suburban districts across New Mexico.

Gabrielle Begay, an elementary teacher in Silver City who serves on the Cobre Consolidated Board of Education and is a 2023-2024 Teach Plus Alumni Policy Fellow, said: “I want to be the voice for my students, and I also want my students to advocate for themselves. Everything we do needs to be student-centered so that students are at the forefront of the decisions we make in education.”

The 2023-2024 Teach Plus Alumni Policy Fellows are:

  • Gabrielle Begay, Jose Barrios Elementary, Silver City
  • Dawn Bilbrey, San Jon High School, San Jon
  • Julia Burrola, Albuquerque Collegiate Charter School, Albuquerque
  • Alisa Cooper de Uribe( 2021 New Mexico Teacher of the Year), New Mexico International School, Albuquerque
  • Aja Currey, Rio Gallinas School for Ecology and the Arts, Las Vegas
  • Chelsea Granillo, Vista Grande Elementary School, Rio Rancho
  • Jaycie Homer, Sixth Grade Academy, Lovington
  • Andrea Kiesling, Alvis Elementary, Clayton
  • Joe Dan Lovato, Turquoise Charter School, Santa Fe
  • Tennise Lucas, Solare Collegiate Charter School, Albuquerque
  • Kelsey McCaffrey, Albuquerque Collegiate Charter School, Albuquerque
  • Gigette Nieto, Rio Rancho Middle School, Rio Rancho
  • Sonny Sapien, Albuquerque Collegiate Charter School, Albuquerque
  • Chrissie Souders, G.W. Stout Elementary, Silver City
  • Andie Sowden, Holloman Elementary, Holloman AFB
  • Robin Stevens, Highland Middle School, Hobbs

About Teach Plus
Teach Plus is dedicated to the mission of empowering excellent, experienced, and diverse teachers to take leadership over key policy and practice issues that advance equity, opportunity, and student success. In pursuing our mission, Teach Plus is guided by our Student Opportunity Mandate: All students should have the opportunity to achieve their potential in an education system defined by its commitment to equity, its responsiveness to individual needs, and its ability to prepare students for postsecondary success. Since 2009, Teach Plus has developed thousands of teacher leaders across the country to exercise their leadership in shaping education policy and improving teaching and learning for students. teachplus.org/nm

For more information and to arrange interviews with the Policy Fellows, contact Kelly Pearce, kpearce@teachplus.org