Shayna Cook

Policy Analyst, Education Policy Program

Shayna Cook is a policy analyst with the Education Policy program at New America. She was a member of the Early & Elementary Education team, and now works on the Learning Technologies project. Cook researches and reports on innovation in family engagement, new technologies, and digital equity issues concerning children from birth through third grade. She also writes about the early childhood workforce and school discipline issues that impact children in the early years and grades. 

Cook has authored the reports "Starting Young: Massachusetts Birth–3rd Grade Policies that Support Children's Literacy Development," "From Crawling to Walking: Ranking States on Birth–3rd Grade Policies That Support Strong Readers," "A False Dichotomy: Elementary School Principals on Academics and Play," "Tradeoffs: Elementary Principals on Hiring and Staffing in the Early Grades," "Multilingual Paraprofessionals: An Untapped Resource for Supporting American Pluralism," "Integrating Technology in Early Literacy: A Snapshot of Community Innovation in Family Engagement," and "Teacher Talent Untapped: Multilingual Paraprofessionals Speak About the Barriers to Entering the Profession."      

Before joining New America, she taught pre-K and 3rd grade in the District of Columbia Public Schools and at a private early learning center in Gaithersburg, Maryland. Cook and her work have been featured in media outlets including Slate, Education Week, and The Washington Monthly. 

She graduated from American University with a master’s degree in education, focusing on policy and leadership. She holds a bachelor’s degree in classics from Howard University.

All Work

EDUCATION POLICY
Quality Improvements for Child Care Cross the Finish Line

Last month, the Obama Administration pushed quality improvements for child care across the finish line.


EDUCATION POLICY
Integrating Technology in Early Literacy

A new brief analyzes the impact of early learning and family engagement programs around the country.


EDUCATION POLICY
Integrating Technology in Early Literacy

EDUCATION POLICY
What Does the Civil Rights Data Tell Us About Early Learners?

Since 1968 the U.S. Dept of Education Office of Civil Rights has been collecting and adding data points on equal education opportunities.


EDUCATION POLICY
Multilingual Paraprofessionals

This policy brief examines whether U.S. paraprofessionals can help meet the growing need for multilingual teachers.


EDUCATION POLICY
Eight Facts That Show Babies are Smarter Than You Thought!

Some takeaways from the National Academy of Medicine’s Transforming the Workforce Report.


EDUCATION POLICY
Five Ways Policymakers Can Support Children’s Mental Health

During Mental Health Awareness Month, it is important to remember that fostering mental health starts in infancy.


EDUCATION POLICY
Out Today: Principals’ Perspectives on Teaching and Learning in PreK-3rd

Most models are geared towards building strong teachers, but until recently principals have been left out of the conversation.


EDUCATION POLICY
Principal's Corner

Until recently, principals have been largely overlooked, with most education policy attention focused on improving teacher quality.


EDUCATION POLICY
Standing Together Against Suspension & Expulsion in Early Childhood

EDUCATION POLICY
At White House, #STEMStartsEarly, with Comments Invited on Tech Policy

At the White House symposium, more than 200 public and private initiatives announced commitments to help promote early STEM education.


EDUCATION POLICY
Why States Need a Strategy on K-2 Literacy and Math Assessment

New America looked at whether states had implemented an approach to assessment by of K- 2 literacy and math.