Teach Plus Texas Launches Two New Policy Fellowship Cohorts with 54 Highly-Effective Teachers from Across the State

Teach Plus Texas Launches Two New Policy Fellowship Cohorts with 54 Highly-Effective Teachers from Across the State

Sarah Campbell

Fellows Will Focus on Early Childhood Education, Teacher Preparation and Recruitment, Strategic Compensation and Mentoring, Recruitment and Retention of Teachers of Color

Dallas, TX — Teach Plus, a national nonprofit that empowers teachers to lead improvements in policy and practice, launched two new Fellowships for the 2019-20 school year. The 29 Texas Policy Fellows teach across the state and hail from Amarillo, El Paso, Waxahachie, the Rio Grande Valley, Austin, and Houston, while the 25 DFW Policy Fellows teach in schools across the Dallas Ft. Worth area. The Fellows will focus on a range of issues of importance to Texas’ teachers, students, and parents, from strategic compensation and mentoring to the recruitment and retention of teachers of color.

“The 2018-19 Texas Policy Fellows proved the power of teacher leadership in the Texas Statehouse by advancing historic investments in Texas schools and students, including an expansion of full-day preschool, new options for teacher advancement and compensation, nearly $1 billion in targeted resources for the state’s highest-need students, and an additional $1,000 per student in every Texas school — a total of $6.5 billion in support of legislative priorities outlined by the cohort,” said Senior Executive Director Lindsay Sobel. “I am excited to see how the new cohort of Fellows will build off of this tremendous success.”

“The Texas legislature’s just-completed session spotlighted important educational policy issues. I’m so excited that this Fellowship will provide me with the knowledge and skills necessary to make a difference at this pivotal point in time,” said Christina Mier, 4th-5th grade gifted and talented teacher and Texas Policy Fellow. “As El Paso’s first Teach Plus Policy Fellow, I hope to encourage other teacher leaders to step up and represent our region in this work.”

With 70% of new Fellows teachers of color, the cohort is representative of the diversity of the state and its students. The Fellows teach all subjects from PK-12th grade, including fine arts and special education. Each Fellow was chosen based on their strong commitment to the classroom and their ability to articulate the needs of their students. The incoming teachers have been recognized for their outstanding work at the school, district, and state level.

The 2019-20 Texas Policy Fellows are: 

Adeola Adegabi, Wainwright Elementary School, Houston ISD
Sarah Alecozay, CAST Medical High School, San Antonio ISD
Chanel Ashley, Harmony School of Innovation San Antonio, Harmony Public Schools
Taja Butler, C E King High School, Sheldon ISD
David Carroll, Clifton Career Development School, Austin ISD
Christine Casey, Waxahachie Global High School, Waxahachie ISD
Cristina Correa, IDEA College Preparatory-San Juan, IDEA Public Schools
Tonnett Davis, Ogden Academy Relay Lab Schools, San Antonio ISD
Elizabeth Gibbons, Tynan ECED, San Antonio ISD
Rikii Gipson, Pershing Elementary School, San Antonio ISD
Kisaundra Harris, Tascosa High School, Amarillo ISD
Faith Izuegbu, YES Prep West, YES Prep Public Schools
Travon Jefferson, YES Prep Hobby, YES Prep Public Schools
Rachael Kabagabu, Cypress Falls High School, Cypress Fairbanks ISD
Erica Kang, YES Prep Northwest, YES Prep Public Schools
Brooke Lucero, Great Hearts Northern Oaks, Great Hearts Texas
Hjamil Martinez Vazquez, Hargrave Elementary, Crowley ISD
Christina Mier, Codwell Elementary, El Paso ISD
Norma Morales, YES Prep Brays Oaks, YES Prep Public Schools
Nakita Murray, Steele Montessori Academy, San Antonio ISD
Barbara Page, Castleman Creek Elementary School, Midway ISD
Milton Perez, Ridgeview Middle School, Round Rock ISD
Miriam Rodgers, Meridian World School
Mark Rogers, Austin Achieve Public Schools
Jean Streepey, Highland Park Middle School, Highland Park ISD
Sarah Tredway, Baker-Ripley Elementary School, Promise Community Schools
Erica Valdez, Del Valle Opportunity Center, Del Valle ISD
Megan Whalon, CAST Tech
Aletha Williams, Mayde Creek High School, Katy ISD

The 2019-20 DFW Policy Fellows are:

Arturo Alvarado, Dan D. Rogers, Dallas ISD
Katie Benningfield, School for the Talented and Gifted in Pleasant Grove, Dallas ISD
Kelvin Bradford, Skyview Elementary, Richardson ISD
Melody Bradley, Grand Prairie High School, Grand Prairie ISD
Natalie Brown, Frank Guzick Elementary, Dallas ISD
Nicholas Clark, Arlington Heights High School, Ft. Worth ISD
Turner Cooper, N. W. Harllee Early Childhood Center, Dallas ISD
Vladimir Dinolov, Dan D. Rogers Elementary, Dallas ISD
Justo Mercado Echaverry, Cesar Chavez Learning Center, Dallas ISD
Allison Fuhrman, Mark Twain Elementary, Richardson ISD
Shana Gaines, Mark Twain Elementary, Richardson ISD
Celeste Graham, Young Men’s Leadership Academy at Florence Middle School, Dallas ISD
Monica Hall, Dallas Environmental Science Academy, Dallas ISD
Taylor Henry, Woodrow WIlson High Schools, Dallas ISD
Joanna Holland, Benjamin Franklin International Exploratory Academy, Dallas ISD
Amanda Hope, Nancy Moseley Elementary, Dallas ISD
Gianella James, Success High School, Ft. Worth ISD
Yuridiana Lewis, Thomas J. Rusk Middle School, Dallas ISD
Yvonne Morgan, Townview Health Professions Magnet High School, Dallas ISD
Christina Puga, Adamson High School, Dallas ISD
Darius Thomas, Stephen C. Foster Elem, Dallas ISD
Adelina Vargas, Thomas J. Rusk Middle School Dallas ISD
John Yourse, Woodrow Wilson High School, Dallas ISD
Bobbie Weir, Richardson High School, Dallas ISD
Orion Smith, Arlington Heights High School, Fort Worth ISD

About Teach Plus

The mission of Teach Plus is to empower excellent, experienced teachers to take leadership over key policy and practice issues that affect their students’ 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, to create an education system driven by access and excellence for all. teachplus.org