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Bonnie O’Keefe

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Bonnie O’Keefe
Associate Partner
Policy and Evaluation

Background: Bonnie O'Keefe is an associate partner with Bellwether Education Partners in the Policy and Evaluation practice area. Since 2016, Bonnie has worked on a wide range of issues, including state education policies, accountability systems, and early childhood education. Prior to joining Bellwether, Bonnie spent two years on the assessment team at the District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education. As PARCC coordinator, Bonnie led assessment policy development, offered training and technical assistance to schools, and served as co-chair of a multi-state working group on test policies and technology. Before that, Bonnie worked for DC Action for Children, a locally focused child advocacy organization, first as an Education Pioneers fellow, then as a policy analyst and senior policy analyst. There, Bonnie authored reports on topics such as child care, early intervention, and school attendance, and coordinated the DC KIDS COUNT project. Prior to her work in education, she served as political programs coordinator for She Should Run and the Women’s Campaign Fund, and interned in the U.S. Senate. Bonnie has a master’s of public policy from Johns Hopkins University and a bachelor’s degree from Williams College.

Experience at Bellwether: policy research and analysis, data analysis, surveys, long- and short-form writing

Client segments served: foundations, policy organizations, advocacy groups, intermediaries

Sample clients: Council of Chief State School Officers, McKnight Foundation, Agenda for Children, InspireNOLA 

Why I do this work: I have been very lucky to have access to great educational opportunities throughout my life, starting with my hometown public schools. Too many children and adults cannot say the same thing. My interest in education comes from a social justice perspective, and even when tackling the most technical problems, I center my work on serving students.

Recent Media

Bonnie O'Keefe
Alex Spurrier
Jennifer O'Neal Schiess
Hailly T.N. Korman
Melissa Steel King
Allison Crean Davis
Indira Dammu
Juliet Squire
Ashley LiBetti

COVID-19 has presented new challenges for schools and families to grapple with when it comes to student learning — but the pandemic also has illuminated shortcomings and missed opportunities that have long been present in our education system. Now, nearly a year after schools across the country first shut down due to the pandemic —and as more communities eye the possibility of a return to full-time, in-person learning — a new series of briefs from Bellwether offers guidance on how the education sector can recenter and rebuild in the wake of COVID-19.

"From Pandemic to Progress: Eight Education Pathways for COVID-19 Recovery" puts forth a suite of ambitious but achievable pathways for education leaders and policymakers to follow to re-engage in complex policy questions and rebuild education as the country begins to emerge from the pandemic. Drawing on the breadth of Bellwether's unique expertise and diversity of viewpoints, this series offers a take on what we'll need in the years ahead to create a sector that can provide students with the high-quality education and supports they need and deserve to be successful.