Education Policy Fellowship Program

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Education Policy Fellowship Pgm


Ashley Rivera, Principal Planner, Atlanta Regional Commission and a former EPFP Fellow, leads a discussion focused on "Neighborhood Planning: How Housing Policy Influences Child Outcomes," during Colloquium 3. 

The Class of 2016

Colloquium 3 - January 21, 2016

The first meeting of the new year brought the Fellows back to their normal meeting room at the Georgia Chamber of Commerce.  The gathering today concentrated on "Critical Linkages to Education:  The Connections and Intersections of Policy Sectors."

Guest speakers included:

Ashley Rivera, Principal Planner, Atlanta Regional Commission - Neighborhood Planning: How Housing Policy Influences Child Outcomes

Rob Rhodes, Director of Projects, Georgia Appleseed, Center for Law and Justice - Effective Student Discipline: Keeping Kids in Class

Dr. Seema Csukas, Medical Director, Maternal and Child Programs - Health Care Policy in Georgia:  The Intersection of Health and Student Readiness

The Fellows also shared their thoughts after attending the formal Education Reform Commission's presentation of the Commission's recommendations to Governor Deal in December.

Colloquium 2 - November 19

The November meeting was held at the Department of Education's headquarters so the Fellows could attend Gov. Deal's Education Reform Commission meeting in the afternoon.  This second session of the year concentrated on "School Funding and Finance: Following the Money Stream" and "Toward a Better Understanding of Policymaking."  Guest speakers included Dr. Carolyn Bordeaux, Associate Professor, Director - Center for State and Local Finance, Georgia State University, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies; Claire Suggs, Senior Education Policy Analyst, Georgia Budget and Policy Institute; Stacey Abrams, Georgia House of Representatives Minority Leader; and Margaret Ciccarelli, Director of Legislative Affairs, Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE).

Colloquium 1 - October 15

The Fellows gathered for their first colloquium of their year in the Georgia Chamber of Commerce Board room.  First speaker was Mike Alexander, Atlanta Regional Commission, who presented "The Impact of Changing Demographics on Georgia's Education System."  The afternoon session featured Ms. Tomeka Hart, Vice-President of Programs, Southern Education Foundation, who presented "A New Majority - Impacts in the South and Across the Nation."  Before wrapping up for the day, the Fellows discussed "The Five Georgias:  What Policymakers Need to Know."

The Class of 2015

Fellows Pat Falotico, Robert Gaines, Amy Foust and Angela Hurtado explain in this short video the impact they feel the program makes, why they chose to participate and why others with an interest in education policy in Georgia should  apply.

Graduation (May 21)


The 20 graduates, family members and colleagues gathered at the Metropolitan Atlanta Chamber of Commerce Thursday, May 21 for the event that honored the Fellows' nine-month study program.


Guest speaker was Shan Cooper, Vice President and General Manager, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co.  She challenged the graduates to use their new-found expertise for the betterment of Georgia's education system.  She said the children of our state are counting on them.  (See the left side of the page for a complete list of graduates.)


Fellow Amy Fouse, Houston County ELA III Coordinator and President of the Georgia Association of Curriculum and Instructional Supervisors, was selected by her classmates to deliver remarks about the program and Class of 2015. She told the grads, "What you think you can't change, you just can't change - yet.  Change your perspective by continuing to lead and connect with those around you who may not seem so similar to you.


"Learn to listen and seek commonalities, learn the nuance art of compromise, learn to allow your opinions to evolve as you take into consideration the perspective of others, learn to shift the focus to the students in Georgia, our most priceless natural resource.  You are the one who can change the conversation about policies that shape public education in Georgia. 


"As Mahatma Gandhi said, 'Be the change you wish to see in the world.'  Students in Georgia deserve and will benefit from your advocacy."


More About EPFP

The participants in the program,

  • Georgia State Legislature
  • Georgia Department of Education
  • State and local leadership programs
  • Businesses and corporations
  • Education organizations
  • Foundations
  • Non-profit sector
  • Local school districts
  • Media

What are the Requirements?

The Fellows commit nine months and concentrate on three program strands: public policy, leadership, and professional networking. They remain in their full-time positions and use their work environment as the context for examining important leadership and policy issues in Georgia.

What are the Personal Benefits?

The program provides Fellows with a unique personal development laboratory for applying new insights and for cultivating new skills. The participants will hear and discuss education policy with the most respected policy makers in the state and nation. At the end of a year, EPFP Fellows will be better informed, more skillful advocates for sound public policy.

What are the Benefits to Georgia?

With the implementation of the EPFP, the Georgia Partnership, the Andrew Young School of Public Policy, and the Office of the President for Public Service and Outreach at the University of Georgia cultivate strategic leaders who have the capacity to advocate for and create sound public policy to improve public education. Ultimately, EPFP seeks to improve the chances of children and youth to succeed.

Application Process

The application process for the 2015-2016 class has closed. The next open period will be announced in the spring of 2016.

For More Information

Dr. Dana Rickman, Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education Policy and Research Director, 404-223-2462.

2014 Educational Policy Fellows, "A unique, great opportunity" Video