From Derrell Bradford <[email protected]>
Subject Meet the 2021 National Voices Fellows
Date January 27, 2021 12:29 PM
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9 incredible leaders, ready to elevate their voices.

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Dear John,

I write today with exciting news: this morning we’re announcing the 2021 cohort ([link removed]) of 50CAN’s National Voices Fellowship.

Three years ago, when I first envisioned the fellowship ([link removed]) along with my colleague Ned Stanley and other members of the 50CAN team, I did so believing that contemporary education efforts, having been one of the nation’s last bastions of bipartisan policy-making, were following the rest of the country’s political discourse into dangerously partisan waters precisely when our students needed our collaboration the most. And with many leaders of the modern education reform consensus stepping back from the work, this spirit of coming together that characterized their accomplishments was precariously placed, at best, for an uncertain future.

We thought one of the best solutions was also one of the simplest ones: a new generation of leaders and messengers. And we still believe this, despite how the pandemic has complicated the policy landscape and how the January 6 attack on our nation’s Capitol building has made the consequences of ever-deepening partisanship and their effect on the great American experiment clearer than ever.

The 2021 cohort builds on our efforts to bring people together across partisan and geographical divides while cultivating a new and growing group of education messengers, analysts and advocates to continue the march, together, toward an education system that is more just, equitable, open and centered on students, parents and results.

Our 2021 cohort is a truly diverse group of education leaders--from a parent of four who built her own education pod when local schools closed to a former dean of education who began her own non-profit; from a high school senior who wants to infuse schools with a culture of intellectualism to an Obama-era Department of Education strategist--we believe all of their voices will contribute to an important, reasoned discussion about the past and future of education policy for years to come.

I hope you share our excitement as we welcome the 2021 cohort to the 50CAN family. You’ll be hearing much more from them soon.


Derrell Bradford
50CAN Executive Vice President

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