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Madeline Mavrogordato is an assistant professor of K–12 educational administration in the College of Education at Michigan State University. She received her Ph.D. in Leadership and Policy Studies from Peabody College, Vanderbilt University. Dr. Mavrogordato’s research centers on issues surrounding school reform and improvement for disadvantaged student populations. She utilizes both quantitative and qualitative methods to investigate how the social context of education, implementation of educational policies, and school leadership shape educational outcomes for underserved students, particularly immigrants and English language learners.

Dr. Mavrogordato served as a bilingual elementary school teacher in the Rio Grande Valley in south Texas and in northern California. As a teacher, she gained a deep understanding of the obstacles faced by disadvantaged students in American public schools. This fueled her interest in how education policies impact English language learners. In her recent research, Dr. Mavrogordato has investigated the process by which English language learners are reclassified as English-proficient and strategies that school staff can employ to better involve Latino parents in their children’s education.

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Jennifer Paul

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Jennifer Paul is a doctoral student in the K-12 Educational Administration program at MSU. For the past four years, she has served as the English Learner (EL) Assessment Consultant in the Office of Standards and Assessment (OSA) at the Michigan Department of Education. She works on many of the state’s assessments, but most notably her time has been devoted to the development and administration of Michigan’s English Language Proficiency Assessment (ELPA) and is now assisting districts in their transition to the new WIDA English language proficiency assessments.

Prior to coming to the OSA Jen worked as a high school Spanish, English, and ELL teacher for five years and then as an educational consultant for the Jackson Intermediate School District, a regional educational service agency in Michigan. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Spanish and English from Kalamazoo College and dual master’s degrees in Educational Administration and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from Eastern Michigan University. She hopes to continue serving Michigan schools in their efforts to increase equitable learning opportunities and spread awareness of the linguistic needs of students.

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