Debbie Hansen Executive Office and Administrative Specialist
Jessica Bowman is a Researcher with the National Center on Educational Outcomes and the TIES Center. In this position, she works to improve inclusion of students with significant cognitive disabilities in general education classrooms by creating resources for parents and educators and providing targeted and intensive technical assistance to states, districts, and schools related to systems change and professional development. Dr. Bowman began her education career as a teacher of students with significant cognitive disabilities and has experience developing, delivering, and evaluating professional development efforts at the state level. Her research has focused on inclusion and access to the general education curriculum in mathematics for students with significant cognitive disabilities. Dr. Bowman holds a PhD in Special Education from the University of Utah.
Gail Ghere, Ph.D. is a Research Associate with the National Center on Educational Outcomes and the TIES Center, a national technical assistance center focused on inclusive education for students with disabilities, particularly students with significant cognitive disabilities. In this position, she focuses on developing resources and providing technical assistance to states and districts related to effective inclusive education systems, Multi-tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) that are inclusive of students with significant cognitive disabilities, systems change and application of research-based practices that lead to positive outcomes for students with disabilities. She has extensive experience in preK-12 schools that began as a related service provider and culminated as a Director of Special Education. She holds her Minnesota administrative licenses in Director of Special Education, K-12 Principal and Superintendent. She has published in the areas of collaborative instructional systems, professional development, program evaluation, and paraprofessional development.
Andrew Hinkle is an Education Program Manager at the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) where he co-lead’s NCEO’s technical assistance activities with the Center’s director. His focus is on topics related to the inclusion of students with disabilities in assessments including issues related to accessibility on state and district assessments. In this capacity, he oversees the development, planning, operation, and internal evaluation of multiple technical assistance activities that are provided to state and federal agencies, and other stakeholders. Prior to joining NCEO, Andrew worked for 14 years at the Ohio Department of Education managing the inclusion of English learners (ELs), students with disabilities, and ELs with disabilities in large-scale assessments, including accessibility, alternate assessments, and graduation requirements. While at Ohio, Andrew was a member of the steering committee for the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) Assessing Special Education Students (ASES) State Collaborative on Assessment and Student Standards (SCASS). Before joining the Ohio Department of Education, Andrew taught English as a Second Language and Gifted Education at the Universidade de Uberaba in Brazil.
Director, National Center on Educational Outcomes
Charity Funfe Tatah Mentan
Virginia Ressa, Ph.D., is a Research Associate with the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). In this position, she provides research-based and policy-based technical assistance to states around the implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). She conducts research and provides leadership to improve the inclusion and achievement of students with disabilities. Prior to coming to NCEO, Virginia worked as an Education Program Specialist at the Ohio Department of Education where she focused on helping educators meet the needs of diverse learners through professional learning. Having taught in public schools in multiple cities, Virginia’s career began with a focus on urban education and school improvement. Virginia’s areas of research and publication include professional learning for teachers, formative instructional practices, and the local implementation of federal and state policies. She earned her Ph.D. in Educational Policy and Leadership at The Ohio State University.