Background: Allison Crean Davis is a senior adviser to Bellwether Education Partners, focusing on issues related to evaluation and planning, predictive analytics, extended learning opportunities, and Native American education. Allison is co-founder of New Legacy Partnerships, LLC, a consulting firm working with schools, districts, state education agencies, nonprofits, and foundations to harness research and organization-specific evidence throughout the planning, execution, and evaluation phases of their work.
Allison acts as coordinator for evaluation at the Center on Innovation in Learning at Temple University and has provided evaluation and planning support for several summer learning initiatives, including those funded by The Wallace Foundation and The John T. Gorman Foundation. She is a founder and vice chair of the board of directors at Baxter Academy for Technology and Science, Maine’s first charter high school. Allison has served as external adviser to the Bureau of Indian Education and guided that organization in the design and implementation of a system of support for schools across 23 states. In addition to providing evaluation services, Allison has done extensive work building the capacity of organizations to evaluate their own efforts for continuous improvement, including state education agencies, districts, schools, and foundation grantees.
Prior to her work as a consultant, Allison was the program director for research at the North Central Regional Educational Laboratory’s (now part of American Institutes for Research) Center for Data Systems and Development. Allison has also worked as an administrator and counselor for the City Colleges of Chicago, has worked in special education programs, and has extensive experience providing psychological diagnostic assessment and treatment services to children and families. She earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the Illinois Institute of Technology and a bachelor’s in both psychology and Spanish from Lafayette College. Allison is a mother/stepmother of four children and resides in Kennebunk, Maine.
Experience at Bellwether: policy research, program evaluation, evaluation capacity-building, foundation advising, quantitive analysis, performance metrics, social-emotional learning
Client segments served: state education agencies, foundations and grantees, charter management organizations, policy organizations, product and service organizations, higher education, Native American education
Sample clients: The Wallace Foundation, The Thomas B. Fordham Institute, Foundation for Excellence in Education, Center on Innovations in Learning, Collaborative for Student Success, RePublic Charter Schools, Discourse Analytics
Why I do this work: My training in clinical psychology provided me with a strong research and analysis background and rich exposure to the academic and emotional challenges experienced by individual children. That work often had me consulting with the primary systems in which children thrive: their families and their schools. This inspired me to consider how schools, and the broader systems in which they function, can best serve the diverse needs of all children and how those efforts can be guided by evidence at all levels.