Theresa Peña

Education Leader

Denver, Colorado

Theresa Peña is an accomplished education leader and is well known throughout Colorado as a strong voice for student-centered school improvements and as an outspoken advocate for educational equity. She was twice elected as an at-large representative on the Denver Board of Education. She served from 2003 to 2011 and was the Board President from 2005 to 2009.

Currently she is working as a Breakfast Partner with Hunger Free Colorado to assist the Denver Public Schools with the Breakfast After the Bell initiative. Prior to that, she was at the Colorado Children’s Campaign as a Senior Education Fellow, working with statewide education organizations on the Integration Project, which supports higher learning standards for Colorado. Theresa also served the City of Denver as the Executive Director of the Denver Education Compact, a cradle-to-career initiative launched by Mayor Michael Hancock to bring together many different agencies to focus on accelerating educational improvements—from preschool through college—for children in Denver. She is a board member of the Denver Preschool Program, the Denver Community Health Services and the Colorado Community College System.

A Denver native, Theresa has a B.A. in sociology from Pomona College in California and a master’s in business administration from Cornell University in New York state. She has two children, one who graduated from the Denver Public Schools and one who is still in DPS, and her husband is a veterinary ophthalmologist.

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Posted June 20, 2017

Special Education Was Created to Push Students Forward But It’s Been Used to Hold Them Back

I was a special education teacher for six years in the resource and co-teaching setting. Though I could not be more proud to be an…

By Jemelleh Coes

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Posted June 14, 2017

I Always Hated Charter Schools. Until I Put My Kids on the Waitlist.

I have never been much of a proponent of charter schools. I am the proud product of traditional public education from kindergarten through 12th grade…

By Vivett Dukes

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Posted June 16, 2017

These Denver Principals Are Calling for an End to Suspensions of Young Students

In the world of education, few things are sadder or more ill-advised than suspending kids as young as 4 years old from school for behavioral…

By Sara Gips Goodall, Lindsey Lorehn, Jennifer Jackson, Jenni Reese, Alexa Mason, Alex Magaña

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