Rita Ghazal is a senior technical assistance consultant at AIR. Ghazal leads state projects and task forces on teacher quality and educator effectiveness, teacher mentoring and induction, and educator equity. She collaborates with state education agencies and assists them in strengthening their capacity to support high-quality implementation of teacher quality initiatives, policies, and programs. She also supports states in their efforts to create and maintain strong connections among state agency work streams and improve alignment across programs and policies. As a project lead for the Texas Comprehensive Center, Ghazal’s work focuses on supporting the Texas Education Agency in implementing, scaling up, and sustaining statewide initiatives, especially in the area of teacher quality and educator effectiveness. She managed and led Texas’ redesign of its teacher standards and evaluation system. She led all phases of the process including developing the research framework, process for revision, use of key research, best practices and approaches, consultant services management, stakeholder convenings, national frameworks alignment analyses, feedback input collection, and supported intra- and inter-agency communication and information dissemination. Ghazal also serves as the TXCC liaison to the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders, one of seven national content centers designed to supply research-based information to help states carry out federal and state education policies and programs.
Previously, Ghazal consulted with the Hawaii Department of Education on its Race-to-the-Top initiative that included the implementation of technical software solutions. Before that Ghazal worked at state education agencies implementing Title I, Part A programs in Virginia and Texas. In Texas, she increased Supplemental Educational Services program participations rates by over 600% in one year and more than doubled the number of students requesting services statewide year-over-year. She also led the nation’s largest and Texas’ first pay-for-performance initiative.
Ghazal also taught eighth-grade physics, chemistry, and astronomy in Southern California.