Quality Practice and Professional Development (QPPD)
Meet our Staff
Kimberly Early, Coach
Kimberly Early is passionate about teaching and bringing quality care to children! Much of her work relates directly to the theme of cultural diversity, curriculum planning, and collaborative communication. She has over 21 years of teaching experience and has taught in places such as Seattle Public Schools, the Girl Scouts, Highline College, and First Place School. Her educational credentials include CLASS certification (Preschool), a master's degree, a teaching certificate, and endorsement in P-3 Early Childhood Education. Before joining the QPPD team, her work and volunteer experience includes working as child care center licensor, and volunteering with community groups around issues of environmental justice, social justice, and closing the education gap. Kimberly loves spending time with her family, traveling, dancing, and reading.
Michael W. Figueroa, Coach
Michael William Figueroa has been working with children and teachers for over 20 years. He began his formal education career in Seattle working with the Early Childhood Educations Assistance Program (ECEAP), preschools and K-5 programs. As a teacher, Michael was fortunate to have wonderful coaches that helped with his educational / pedagogical leadership and assisted him in furthering his education to receive a Master's degree and teaching certificate with a P-3 endorsement. Michael's hope is to create partnerships with the teachers, and assist them in reaching their goals for themselves and their students.
Bick Hang, Coach
Bick Hang has worked in the area of children and family services for over 27 years, with the last 15 years dedicated to early childhood education. Able to communicate in Vietnamese, Spanish, and English, Bick has served children and families from culturally diverse communities within various education systems, tribal organizations, higher education, and local government and social services agencies. Most recently, as an Early Achievers coach, she provided direct coaching and technical assistance to early learning providers within King County. The focus of her work is at the grass-root and community level, leveraging support and advocating for positive and culturally responsive changes for families, especially those underrepresented. Bick holds a graduate degree in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College with specialization in Early Childhood Education and Bicultural Development in Young Children, and an undergraduate composite degree from Hope College in Sociology and Psychology with a minor in Spanish.
Sharon Knight, Ph.D, Coach
Dr. Sharon Knight is a Senior Early Education Specialist with the City of Seattle. She is an eminent race and social justice activist with passion and expertise in culturally responsive leadership and pedagogy. Her unique proficiency is grounded in equity-driven adult education with extensive experience in professional development design, implementation, and evaluation. For over 35 years, she has partnered with community-based organizations, governmental agencies, and private and public education establishments to develop policies and strategies that build seamless, quality systems for professional development. Dr. Knight holds a Master's in Leadership and Education and a Doctorate in Organizational Management and Leadership.
Miriam Zmiewski-Angelova, Coach
Miriam Zmiewski-Angelova has served as an educator, trainer, consultant, evaluator, and researcher for numerous organizations in Arizona, Illinois, Colorado, and Washington as well as tribal nations. Her ability to be flexible and open has enabled her to move in partnership with teachers, community members, and clients to sustain productive and collaborative relationships. She feels incredibly honored for the knowledge and experiences gained through her work with families and communities as they have continually strengthened her commitment to culturally and linguistically responsive anti-bias practices. Miriam carries this into her current work with QPPD to elevate the quality of instructional coaching and professional development opportunities for teachers and administrators.
Sonja Griffin, Manager
Sonja Griffin is the Manager of the Quality Practice and Professional Development Unit in the new Department of Education and Early Learning. Prior to this appointment she served as the Senior Policy Advisor for Early Learning with the Office for Education. Sonja has worked in the field of education for over 30 years, with a primary focus on improving the quality of education for all children and closing the opportunity gap. She has actively worked in the Seattle community as a teacher, administrator, college instructor, coach and trainer, and serves on several boards and grass roots organizations focused on improving the lives of black children. Sonja holds an M.A. in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College with a specialization in Education Leadership and Adult Education.
Jasmine Bucu, Administrative Specialist
Jasmine Alo is the Early Learning Training Coordinator for the Quality Practice and Professional Development (QPPD) Unit in the City of Seattle's Department of Education and Early Learning (DEEL). Previously, she was an Administrative Specialist II with QPPD, and prior to that, she worked for the University of Washington for almost six years in various departments including the College of Education and Intercollegiate Athletics. Jasmine has over 3+ years of experience in coordinating high-quality professional development opportunities for educators in both the Early Learning and K-12 systems. Her passion for the field of education, combined with a commitment to Race and Social Justice, has also led to several years of work in childcare and other youth-based programs in hopes to create and sustain more equitable services for children and families, especially those underserved. Jasmine has a Bachelor's degree in American Ethnic Studies and a Minor in Education, Learning, and Societies. She is a proud graduate of the University of Washington, and hopes to one day pursue a Master's Degree in Education focused on Multicultural Education.
Frances Robinson, Administrative Specialist
Frances Robinson is an Administrative Specialist with the Early Learning Division. Her primary responsibilities for the Quality Practice and Professional Development unit are to track the many costs involved in sponsoring trainings and other activities that promote quality early learning in Seattle. She also edits documents produced by the division with the goal of making them clearer and more easily read by all. Frances has a Bachelor's degree in Psychology and has held a variety of administrative and direct service positions in the education or youth-related programs of nonprofit or government agencies including the City of Seattle, University of Washington, Camp Fire, and Mason Youth Services. She enjoys providing support that helps those on the front line provide quality service to our community.