Improvement Fellows

Meet Oklahoma Excel's Improvement Fellow of The Month

December 2021: Donna Hogan, Oklahoma Connections Academy
Donna Hogan has been with Oklahoma Excel as a Math Improvement Fellow since its beginning. As a third year fellow, she has seen her team grow and even split into two Excel teams. Implementing the change ideas over the past three years has resulted in real growth towards the OK Excel Math Aim of increasing justification and reasoning in her students and the students at Oklahoma Connection Academy. Collaborating with the other Excel Improvement Fellows and team members has also been an incredible journey. Donna teaches High School Geometry and Math of Finance. Donna has her Bachelor’s in Chemistry from Texas Tech University and is a National Board Certified Teacher. Growing student leaders is also a passion for Donna. She is the faculty sponsor for OKCA Student Council, helping students plan service projects, social events, and prom. When Donna is not dreaming up math modeling tasks or the next school social event, she enjoys sport flying in her small plane with her husband, as she is working to recertify to get her private pilot’s license. Aviation is a wonderful motivation for learning math!


October 2021: Jana Dodd, Oklahoma City Public Schools

Jana Dodd has been teaching for 23 years, with a majority of those years in Kindergarten. She is currently teaching the virtual version of kindergarten and 1st grade for her district. She loves teaching and her kids!  



    September 2021

      Rachel Morris
     McAlester Public Schools


Check out the latest edition of the Roundup Blog Series: Creating a Culture of Continuous Improvement through Oklahoma Excel, which features two of our amazing Improvement Fellows: Tim Collier from McAlester Public Schools and Donna Hogan from Oklahoma Connections Academy. 

What is an Improvement Fellow?

Improvement Fellows are teacher leaders who help manage the day-to-day operations of the local improvement team. They serve as a liaison between their local team and the OSDE Excel hub. Each local team is required to have one of the team members serve as the Improvement Fellow. Although administrators, such as a principal, are encouraged to join the local improvement team, they may not serve as the Improvement Fellow. Improvement Fellows have additional responsibilities and receive additional training and support in the following areas:

  • Improvement Science
  • High leverage instructional strategies
  • Data analysis
  • Building relationships
  • Leading effective teams
  • Jim Knight's Partnership Principles
  • Peer observation and feedback
  • Coaching conversations
  • Team meetings: planning and facilitation
  • Storytelling 

What are the required Improvement Fellow qualifications?  

Improvement Fellows help support their team members in implementing high-leverage instructional strategies to enhance student outcomes. Successful Improvement Fellows:

  • must have at least 3 years experience in the content area
  • evidence of successful teaching, including a proven track record of student achievement
  • demonstrated leadership skills
  • ability to adhere to deadlines
  • excellent communication skills
  • have technology skills 

To learn more about the Improvement Fellow program, visit  


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Last updated on December 8, 2021