About me:

I’m a journalist whose work has appeared in USA Today, the Hechinger Report, and NPR stations in Texas, New York, and Louisiana. My specialty is covering education, although I also have experience in covering science/health, business, real estate, municipalities, and crime.

I am:

  • Data-driven: My journalism philosophy is to tell human stories through data. See my data projects page for examples of work I’ve done with R, Python, and Datawrapper.
  • Empathetic: I write deeply-reported, narrative stories that center the voices of people who have lived through injustice and trauma.
  • Tenacious: I diligently explore every avenue of an investigation to uncover scoops and never-before-published insights.
  • Collaborative: I worked with a team of reporters for a four-part investigative series on private schools for USA Today. Together, we submitted over 100 public records requests nationwide.

How 'the most violent' special education school ended restraint and seclusion

Teachers at Centennial School, for children with autism and serious behavioral issues, thought they had no other way to keep children safe except to use restraint and seclusion. They restrained children with disabilities over 1000 times in a single year. Then, they decided they had to change. In 1999, Centennial went from 233 restraints in the first 40 days of school to just one restraint in the last 40 days of school. Within four years, restraints were down to zero. This is how they did it.

Their son had autism. Mom didn't speak English well. COVID-19 put school online: One family's fight for special ed services

Nationally, Hispanic students are consistently the most underrepresented group in terms of accessing private placement. In 2019, the Teacher Project surveyed all 50 states for data on students placed at private special education schools at the public’s expense. Of the 15 states where demographic data was available, Hispanic students were significantly underrepresented in 13 of them. I co-reported this story with a Teacher Project colleague and worked with her on data collection and analysis.

Concerns rising over Pearson, the company behind PARCC and other tests

This year, five million kids in the United States, including New Jersey, will take a new standardized test -  the PARCC. Potential new teachers in Pennsylvania will take a new certification test – the PAPA. And thousands of men and women who never finished high school will be betting their futures on the results of a proficiency exam – the GED. What do all these tests have in common? The company that administers them: Pearson.
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