Research Director

Krista Kaput

Krista leads efforts to use data to tell stories about Minnesota’s E-12 landscape from an asset-based, equity lens. Born and raised in Minneapolis, Krista began her career as a Teach for America corps member in Chicago. There, Krista taught special education in a traditional high school, where she held leadership positions as the eleventh-grade lead and mathematics department chair, and then also served on the founding staff of a Noble STEM charter school. Frustrated by the lack of teacher and student voice being incorporated into policies that impacted them, she left the classroom and made a career change to education policy. In 2016, Krista moved back to Minneapolis where she led Education Evolving’s student-centered policy efforts in competency-based education, innovation zones, and alternative teacher preparation before finding her home at EdAllies.

Krista holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in History and Anthropology from the University of Chicago and a Master’s of Education in Education Policy and Management from Harvard University. She is currently working on her Master’s in Public Policy at the University of Minnesota Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, where she received the John E. Brandl Public Leadership Fellowship and the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Award. When she isn’t working or with her family, Krista co-coordinates an Education Policy Fellowship Program that aims to help individuals from a variety of backgrounds expand their knowledge of state and federal policy design, enactment and implementation.

What do you hope to see change in education during your lifetime?

I believe that every child has a right to a high-quality education that is relevant and engaging. However, I also know that there is a lot of work that must be done to make this a reality. We need to have honest conversations that lead to intentional and collaborative efforts to address the disproportionate rates of suspensions and expulsions for students of color and students with special needs, persistent achievement gaps, high college remediation rates, low expectations, inequitable access to high-quality teachers, and more. In my lifetime, I hope to see people from different ideologies come together to work with, and not upon, families and students to rectify these inequities.

What part of your job gets you out of bed in the morning?

I am incredibly passionate about the education issues we work on. From my own personal experience, my time as a teacher, and from talking with students and teachers in my current role, I know we are doing work that is going to have a positive impact on the lives of students. Because at the end of the day, it should always be about students and working to ensure that they are getting an excellent education. I feel lucky that I get out of bed every morning knowing we are working towards that.