May 2017 National Core Advocates Convening: Impact through Instructional Advocacy

Denver CO

May 5 - 7, 2017

The annual Core Advocate Conference meeting is a chance for teachers and teacher leaders from across the country to join a network of fellow educators who are committed to creating the best possible learning experiences for students by understanding the Shifts in instruction required by college and career-ready standards and speading the impact by collaborating with colleagues. A variety of sessions will be offered by the math, ELA/literacy, assessment, and instructional materials experts from Student Achievement Partners, allowing you to specialize your learning for maximum impact on your classroom, school, district and state. Take your learning to the next level, learn with and from your Core Advocate colleagues, and increase your Impact Through Instructional Advocacy to increase student achievement! 

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Barbara Beske

Senior Mathematics Specialist, Student Achievement Partners

Bio: Her work spans multiple math initiatives, focusing particularly on implementation of the Common Core State Standards with respect to curriculum and teacher engagement. Barbara has 20 years of math teaching experience at the middle school, high school and community college levels in New Jersey. Barbara holds a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Education from Bucknell University.

Dani Palm

Data Literacy Specialist, Oak Creek Franklin Joint District

Bio: Danielle Palm, or Dani to her friends, is the Assessment Literacy and Data Specialist for Oak Creek Franklin Joint District. Dani is privileged to support teachers and administrators in data analysis that improves our system outcomes for our students. Prior to starting in Oak Creek, Dani worked for 16 years in Milwaukee Public Schools as an instructional coach and teacher. Passionate about the development of educators, both in her roles as an adjunct professor at Cardinal Stritch University, as well as an independent consultant working with Student Achievement Partners, Dani strongly believes teacher coaching and support are essential to school improvement. In her spare time, Dani continues tho pursue her passion project of developing a system to measure a student's mathematics fluency without anxiety. Dani asks enjoys vegetable gardening, golfing with her husband, Scott, playing with her dogs, and watching with amazement the development of her children, thirteen year old Summer and nine year old Elijah. Danielle is available for consultation or support at

David Abel

CAO, English Language Arts, UnboundEd

Bio: David Abel is a former teacher who has designed and developed curriculum, assessment and training for K-12 English Language Arts. He taught composition and ESL at numerous post-secondary institutions, including City College of New York, New York City College of Technology and St. John's University. As the chief academic officer for English Language Arts at Unbounded, he directs the ELA curriculum work and creates professional development programs for the Standards Institute. Previously, David was a fellow for ELA curriculum and assessment at the Regents Research Fund, where he led the development of P-12 ELA curriculum on David also previously held senior roles at the New York City Department of Education

Jason Zimba

Founding Partner, Student Achievement Partners

Bio: Jason Zimba was a lead writer of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and is a Founding Partner of Student Achievement Partners. He holds a B.A. from Williams College with a double major in mathematics and astrophysics; an M.Sc. by research in mathematics from the University of Oxford; and a Ph.D. in mathematical physics from the University of California at Berkeley. As a researcher, Dr. Zimba’s work spanned a range of fields, including astronomy, astrophysics theoretical physics, philosophy of science, and pure mathematics. His academic awards include a Rhodes scholarship and a Majorana Prize for theoretical physics. Dr. Zimba has taught physics and mathematics to university students and high school students, as well as to adult prison inmates and members of other disadvantaged groups. He is the author of Force and Motion: An Illustrated Guide to Newton’s Laws.

Amanda Vitello

Student Achievement Partners

Bio: Amanda began her career as a community educator and middle school teacher. Prior to joining Student Achievement Partners in 2013, Amanda was the National Director of Implementation for Kaplan K12 Learning Services, supervising large-scale district programs. Amanda holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Education from Mount Holyoke College and a master’s degree in Educational Counseling from National University.

Beth Shipe

Everett Public Schools

Bio: Secondary ELA and Humanities Facilitator

Donna Wood

Washoe County School District

Bio: Captain, NV Core Advocates

Amanda Davis

Instructional Coach - Sorgho Elementary , Core Advocate

Amy Deslates

Administrator, Lafayette High School Lafayette LA

Amy Rudat

Director of ELA,

Amy Spies

4th Grade Teacher , Florida Standards Advocate Captain

Angie Gunter

Literacy Specialist, Green River Regional Educational Cooperative

Angie Miller

K-5 Math Instructional Support Specialist, Anacortes School District

Astrid Fossum

Senior Mathematics Specialist, Student Achievement Partners

Bev Davis

Director of Instruction, Orleans Central Supervisory Union

Bob Janes

Team Leader, CREC

Bryan Drost

Dir of C and Technology, Rocky River

Carey Swanson

ELA Content Specialist, Student Achievement Partners

Carie DeBaca

Elementary Math Specialist , Capital School District

Char Shryock

Teacher Champion Fellow, Collaborative For Student Success

Chris Hayes

#2 Fan (of Aaron Grossman), Washoe County School District

Christina Allison

Director of Math Professional Learning, The Achievement Network

Claire Rivero

Digital Strategy Manager, Student Achievement Partners

David Liben

Student Achievement Partners

Bio: David has taught elementary, middle school and high school students in public and private schools, as well as community college and teacher preparation courses, in New York City and Vermont. David still spends as much time as possible in schools with teachers and children. Together with Meredith Liben, David founded two innovative model schools in New York City - New York Prep, a junior high school in East Harlem, and in 1991, the Family Academy - where he served as Principal and lead curriculum designer. David holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in school administration from Teachers College, Columbia University.

Dawn Perez

Middle School Literacy Coach, Buncombe County Schools

Dayna Burke

First grade teacher , AZ Core Advocates

Debra Keelen

School Improvement Specialist/Educational Consultant, Favorite Educational Consultants, Inc

Elizabeth Horan-Thompson

Managing Director, Coaching Strategy, ANet / Achievement Network (ANet)

Elizabeth Meier

Associate for Special Projects and Partner Support, Student Achievement Partners

Erin Chavez

Elem. Math consultant, Kentucky Department of Education

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