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Already off to a fast start in 2013, the George W. Bush Institute proudly announces that three new Fellows have joined the mission of advancing freedom and expanding opportunities for individuals through education reform.

“We welcome these new Fellows to the Bush Institute with much excitement because they come here with new ideas and proven records of shaking up the status quo in education,” said Dr. James K. Glassman, founding Executive Director of the George W. Bush Institute. “At the Bush Institute, we begin with smart people and good ideas, and we push forward to action and results.” 

Focusing on leadership in public schools and driving greater emphasis on the critical learning period of middle school, the three new Fellows bring varied backgrounds to the task of reforming public schools in America.

Jacquelyn Davis joins the Bush Institute as a Fellow in the Alliance to Reform Education Leadership. As the founder and leader of ED-Volution Education Group, she has worked with leading sector entrepreneurs and philanthropies on strategy; new initiative design; partnership creation; growth and launch; management; school turnaround; charter management; state, city and district redesign; and human capital with special focus on school leadership. Davis launched and led the Washington, D.C., program of New Leaders, a national nonprofit that attracts, prepares and supports outstanding school leaders. She grew the program to serve over 20 percent of the city’s public and charter schools.  Ms. Davis also co-founded Thurgood Marshall Academy Public Charter High School in D.C.

Dr. Robert Balfanz joins the Bush Institute as a Fellow in the Middle School Matters program. Dr. Balfanz is a research professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Education, where he is also co-director of the Talent Development Secondary reform model, co-director of the Everyone Graduates Center, and co-operator of Baltimore Talent Development High School. He is a leader and a co-founder of Diplomas Now, an evidence based school transformation model for high needs middle and high schools which combines whole school reform with enhanced student supports, guided by an early warning system. He has published widely on secondary school reform, high school dropouts, early warning systems, school climate, and instructional interventions in high-poverty schools.

Dr. Sharon Vaughn joins the Bush Institute as a Fellow in the Middle School Matters program. Dr. Vaughn is currently the H. E. Hartfelder/Southland Corp. Regents Chair in Human Development and the Executive Director of The Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk at the University of Texas at Austin. She is the recipient of the American Educational Research Association’s Special Interest Group distinguished researcher award and the University of Texas Distinguished faculty award. She has authored more than 15 books and 250 articles and is Principal Investigator on several research grants.

“Every day we learn more about what works in schools, and the calls grow stronger for accountability, quality leadership and proven best practices,” said Dr. Kerri Briggs, Director of Education Reform at the Bush Institute. “These new Fellows understand those challenges and bring new dimensions of experience and passion for ensuring every child has an opportunity to learn and a chance at a bright future.”