Daniel Sellers was MinnCAN’s executive director from 2012-2016.

At MinnCAN, we believe that all kids can succeed, and that teachers should play a role in shaping policy changes to make sure that they do. That’s why last year, we launched the MinnCAN Teacher Policy Fellowship (TPF) and welcomed longtime Minnesota educator Holly Kragthorpe as our inaugural fellow. Holly was so successful in the role—creating our online Teacher Advocacy Toolkit and soliciting education policy ideas from her colleagues—we decided to not only continue the TPF this year, but to expand it.

I’m thrilled to introduce you to our three teacher policy fellows for the 2015-16 school year:

  • Paula Cole is a bilingual, multicultural first-grade teacher in Minneapolis, and is excited to participate in efforts to increase teacher diversity and empower low-income parents to advocate for their children.
  • Jake Knaus is a second-grade bilingual teacher in Minneapolis, and hopes to use the TPF to engage more teachers in important education policy discussions.
  • Cristin Murphy is a special education teacher in Roseville, and specializes in differentiated instruction and emotional/behavioral disorders. She hopes to assist in making systemic changes to Minnesota’s educational policies, helping to ensure equity for all students.

We couldn’t be more excited to have Paula, Jake and Cristin join our team. Thanks to their varied interests, palpable passion and eagerness to strengthen the link between policy and practice, we’re confident that they’ll help us identify—and successfully advocate for—policy solutions that will benefit all Minnesota students, educators and families.

Please tweet out a very warm welcome to our three new fellows! 


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