Over the last 17 years, the Florida Partnership for Minority and Underrepresented Student Achievement has refined the process of investing in instructional practices that close opportunity and achievement gaps across the state.This session is designed to highlight how a strategic partnerships between a state educational agencies, regional educational agencies, school districts, and building level leaders can improve access to opportunity for traditionally underrepresented students. We will describe the architecture of the collaborative plan and highlight data-driven, best practices for improving student outcomes by having a multi-disciplinary panel share insights from state, regional, district and school perspectives. Participants will leave with research-based strategies and best practices to remove barriers and increase equitable access to advanced academic preparation, ensuring that all students have Liberty to Learn.
Brian Barnes is the Senior Director of the Florida Partnership for Minority and Underrepresented Student Achievement. In his eight year tenure, with the College Board Brian has spearheaded the College Board’s outreach to rural Title I schools and promoted equitable access to opportunities for underserved students throughout the state. He has been recognized by Florida State University as a “Notable Nole” for his contributions in the field of education. Prior to joining the College Board, he served as a middle and high school administrator as well as a classroom teacher.
David has been part of a wide range of cutting-edge education issues over his 20-year career. He helped state policymakers understand and craft their own charter school laws in the 1990s. He was an early employee of SchoolNet during the pioneering days of “data-driven-decision making,” helping to build the K-12 learning management systems market in the early 2000s. As an attorney at the national education law firm of Brustein & Manasevit, he represented state educational agencies and local educational agencies on federal fiscal, procurement, and policy strategy and compliance matters during the heydays of No Child Left Behind and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. David frequently presents on his work and experiences at national conferences, including the National Association of Federal Education Program Administrators (NAFEPA) and its state affiliates.
Patrick Wnek is the executive director of the North East Florida Educational Consortium. NEFEC serves 13 rural school districts, PK Yonge Developmental Research School at the University of Florida, and the Florida School for the Deaf and Blind. The mission of NEFEC is to help member districts cooperatively meet their educational goals and objectives by providing programs and services that individual districts would not be able to provide as effectively or as economically when acting alone. He works closely with the College Board Florida Partnership to prepare students for college and career success. Patrick has served as assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, principal, assistant principal, and classroom teacher. As a graduate instructor, he works with aspiring leaders from across the state. He currently serves on the advisory board for the Florida Organization of Instructional Leaders. He graduated from the University of Florida with an Ed.D. degree in Educational Leadership. His passion includes working with diverse educational partners to provide educational opportunities for all students.