Doctoral Students Zainab Qaabidh and Mario Jackson Invited to Join Cohort of the Alliance for Catholic Education’s Reform Leaders’ Summit
NC State College of Education graduate students Zainab Qaabidh ’24PHD and Mario Jackson ’24PHD, who are both earning a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development in the educational evaluation and policy analysis program area of study, have been invited to join the 14th cohort of the Alliance for Catholic Education’s Reform Leaders’ Summit.
The Reform Leaders’ Summit aims to equip leaders with skills and abilities needed to support family rights and equity in education. Qaabidh and Jackson will be part of a cohort of about 50 educators who engage in three immersion weekends, facilitated by policymakers, school leaders, researchers, education entrepreneurs and funders.
“I consider it an immense honor to have been accepted into this program. Being accepted reflects my interest in learning more about equity and its intersection with educational policies and practices across the United States,” Jackson said.
“Within my 22 years in education, the past eight years have prompted my desire to pursue a Ph.D. and make effective change in the private school sector,” Qaabidh said. “These experiences have awarded me with opportunities to advocate and educate families on alternative options to public education while ensuring equitable opportunities for all. This summit will enable me to strengthen my knowledge and skill sets to continue to bolster these efforts.”
As part of the Reform Leaders’ Summit cohort, Qaabidh said she is most looking forward to exploring topics related to special education in the private sector with a focus on strategies that are being implemented that could serve as a model of equity and choice to other institutions.
She is also excited for the opportunity to network and collaborate with influential education leaders.
“Education is not a profession, but a noble calling. I am honored to be presented with these opportunities to serve, advocate and facilitate experiences that will continue to shape, enhance and inspire others,” she said.
Jackson, who is from Jamaica, said he is looking forward to the opportunity to learn more about school choice reform in the United States and the potential the movement has to advance equity for historically minoritized groups of students.
“As an emerging policy scholar, I anticipate learning more about how I can participate in and influence education policy conversations across the U.S.,” he said. “Moreover, the training and activities will definitely afford me the opportunity to voice some of the many questions I have about equity issues in K-12 policies across the U.S.”