Chantei Alves is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. A returning Fellow, Chantei teaches Kindergarten-1 Inclusion at Young Achievers K-8 Science and Math Pilot School in Mattapan, MA, where she is also the K0-K1 team leader, a member of the human resources committee, the school site council, the technology committee, and the joy and wellness committee. Chantei is a Boston Teachers Union Building Representative for Young Achievers, as well as a founding Parent Engagement Committee member. Chantei is on the Board for the Boston Network of Black Student Achievement (BNBSA), a BNBSA Special Education Committee member, and an educator on The Teacher Collaborative Educator Council. She also serves as a 2019 WGBH MA Education Ambassador and is on the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee of the Massachusetts Reading Association (MRA). Chantei graduated from Atlantic Union College with a BS in Pre-Med Biology with a Chemistry minor and received her MA in Education from Northeastern University.
Sydney Chaffee is a 2019-20 Commonwealth Policy Fellow. A returning Fellow, Sydney is a 9th grade humanities teacher and instructional coach at Codman Academy Charter Public School in Dorchester, MA. As the 2017 National Teacher of the Year, Sydney has spoken to audiences around the globe about the limitless power of teachers and students to change the world. Sydney is a National Board Certified Teacher. She earned her BA from Sarah Lawrence College and her MEd from Lesley University.
Kevin Cormier is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. A returning Fellow, Kevin is a math teacher at Nissitissit Middle School. Kevin has been a member of three Teach Plus Policy Fellowships, serving one year as a Senior Fellow and this third year as an invited returning alumnus. In addition to the policy work, he has worked with the Teach Plus research team to help produce a report on teacher preparation. Kevin works with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education on their CURATE initiative to provide guidance to districts regarding curricular decision-making. He received his BA from the University of New Hampshire, his MEd from Fitchburg State University, and is enrolled in the doctoral program of Math and Science Education at the University of Massachusetts Lowell for work involving formative assessment.
Paul Degenkolb is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. Paul teaches 9th-12th grade French at Malden High School. After traveling to Haiti as a 2015 Fund for Teachers Fellow, Paul created professional development workshops to promote culturally relevant teaching practices for all learners, particularly for Haitian students. He has presented on this topic at the Massachusetts Association of Speakers of Other Languages (MATSOL) as well as in Malden and other communities in Greater Boston. Paul serves as a building representative for the Malden Education Association. He earned his BA in French from Yale University and his MEd in Secondary Education from Boston College.
Valerie Eisenson is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. Valerie is an 5th-8th grade English language learner specialist at Excel Academy Charter School in Chelsea. She is the co-chair of the Young Professional's Board of Breakthrough Greater Boston, an education nonprofit that provides after-school and summer programming as well as college persistence support to students in Somerville, Cambridge, and Boston. Previously, Valerie was an SEI math teacher in the Bridge Academy of Chelsea High School, where she participated as a member of the Intervention Block leadership team. Valerie was a Massachusetts Corps Member of Teach For America. She graduated from Yale University with a BA in American Studies and received her EdM in Curriculum and Instruction from Boston University.
Samantha Garcia is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Teaching Policy Fellow. Samantha teaches a Newcomer ESL Level two class for 6th-8th graders. She supports language development in both ELA and math classes with 8th graders at UP Academy Oliver Middle School in Lawrence, MA and serves as the ESL chairperson for her school. As a Teach for America alum, Samantha has been an operations coordinator, RETELL instructor, and an ESL learning team leader. Samantha was the recipient of the 2019 Sontag Prize for Urban Education. She earned a BA in Government from Georgetown University and an MEd in Curriculum and Teaching from Boston University.
Robin Gleason is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. Robin is the literacy specialist at Bagnall Elementary School in Groveland, MA. She serves as the curriculum and data support specialist for the K-6th grade teachers and serves on the instructional core support team. Robin participated on Pentucket Regional School District's Curriculum Renewal Team for ELA/ Foreign Language in order to evaluate and select ELA curriculum for the district. Robin has collaborated with district administration and peers to design their Literacy Action Plan with the support of MTTS Academy. She serves as a panelist on the ELA K-2 Massachusetts CURATE Curriculum Fellowship. She is certified as an Orton Gillingham practitioner. Robin graduated from Westfield State College with a BA in Elementary Education and received her MEd in Reading from Salem State College.
Stephen Guerriero is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. A returning Fellow, Stephen teaches 6th grade social studies at High Rock Middle School in Needham, MA. Stephen is a vocal advocate for the rights and inclusion of LGBTQ students and staff in all aspects of educational policy. He is the Vice President for Communications of the Needham Education Association, the local affiliate of the Massachusetts Teachers Association. Stephen is a member of the Educator Advisory Board of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and has been the head coach of the middle school cross country and track and field teams. He has been the teachers' union building representative and has participated in several contract cycles as a member of the Unit A bargaining team. He is the recipient of the Connie Craen Carven Fellowship from the Examined Life program and of the Jane C. Waldbaum Archaeological Field School Scholarship for participation on an archaeological dig in Rome. Stephen earned a BA in International Relations and Italian Studies from Boston University, an MEd from Boston College, and an MA in Ancient Greek and Roman Studies from Brandeis University.
Megan Hanafin is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. Megan is a 4th grade teacher in Bedford, MA, where she is her grade level team leader and a mentor for new teachers in the district. She received training at Columbia University's Teacher College to co-lead in the implementation of the reading and writing workshop model at her school. Prior to her time in Bedford, Megan taught 4th and 5th grade at Harlem Children's Zone, Promise Academy, where she helped to develop the math and science curriculum to best meet her students' needs. Megan earned her BA in Elementary Education from Roger Williams University and received her MA in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Massachusetts Lowell.
Lisa Hanifan is a 2019-20 Teach Plus Commonwealth Policy Fellow. A returning Fellow, Lisa teaches 1st grade at Linden STEAM Academy in Malden, MA, where she is a member of the school site council. She mentors newly-hired teachers and supervises undergraduate education students from Lesley University. Previously, Lisa taught integrated kindergarten and preschool at the Early Learning Center in Malden, where she served on the early childhood task force. Lisa has been awarded grants to implement flexible seating in her classroom and funds to support cultivating a culturally informed classroom. Lisa participates in the RIDES Program at Harvard University and is a former panelist for the ELA K-2 Massachusetts CURATE Curriculum Fellowship. She earned a BA and MS in Health and Human Services and Criminal Justice from Suffolk University and an MEd in Elementary Education from Cambridge College.