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
Promising Practices from Department of Defense Early Ed Programs

Although most child care workers experience economic instability, the DoD's child care and preschool program is a bright spot.


EDUCATION POLICY
Shining a Light on Lack of Access to Afterschool Care

Despite the expansion of afterschool programs, the report shows that many families continue to lack access to care.


EDUCATION POLICY
Making High Expectations Universal

Common Core is a divisive issue in education; however, the need for greater teacher expectations for all students is undeniable.


EDUCATION POLICY
States Working to Reduce Pre-K Suspensions

The data show that pre-K students of color are being suspended and expelled at a much higher rate.