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Welcome to My Policy Notebook

By Sara Mead — July 11, 2010 2 min read

Hi there. Welcome to my education policy notebook.

A few things about me: I’m a D.C.-based education policy analyst who’s been working in education policy for a little more than 10 years. Currently, I’m a senior associate with Bellwether Education Partners, a new non-profit organization that works to build the field of organizations accelerating achievement for low-income students. I work directly with some of the awesome organizations you see listed here (don’t worry, I’ll disclose when I write anything about anyone we work with), and contribute to Bellwether’s policy and thought leadership work. Previously, I directed the New America Foundation’s Early Education Initiative and also worked for Education Sector, the Progressive Policy Institute, and the U.S. Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley.

I’m also a member of the District of Columbia Public Charter School Board, the appointed body that authorizes and oversees charter schools serving 38 percent of students in Washington, D.C.—you’ll hear a bit about this work from time to time on this blog. And I’m on the board of Democrats for Education Reform.

What else will this blog be about? In general, it will be what its title implies, a sort of notebook of notes, analysis, and commentary on education policy topics. You can expect that I’ll write about major national policy developments—particularly in the federal arena, but also noteworthy state and local developments. What I write about will also track closely with areas of particular interest to me: charter schools and public school choice, early childhood education, education in the District of Columbia, gender in education, and educational innovation. I’m also particularly interested in how education policy questions fit into broader issues of how we think about children, families, and our societal responsibilities to children and one another, as well as the relationship between education policy and other social service delivery—so expect me to write about these topics from time to time.

One other thing you should know about me: Education is the family business in my family. My father, who recently retired after a long career as a high school principal (yes, he was my high school principal), currently teaches remedial math at a community college and supervises student teachers at a small liberal arts college, both in Michigan. My sister is a high school English teacher in rural Maryland, and her husband teaches middle school music and drama at a suburban Maryland middle school. My late grandfather was a principal, teacher, and librarian of several schools in inner-city Pittsburgh. My mother has been a homemaker most of my life, but has also taught Head Start and worked in home-based childcare, both for pay and not. I’m incredibly proud of the work my family members do as educators, and their experience helps inform my work and writing.

So, welcome to my notebook. I hope that this blog can be a real opportunity for conversation and debate. Please feel free to contact me with feedback and tips, either in the comments or through my e-mail at right. If you like what you read here, please consider following me on twitter as well.

The opinions expressed in Sara Mead’s Policy Notebook are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.