Best In Class Coalition staff
The Best In Class team consists of members representing both The Commit Partnership and The Communities Foundation of Texas. This joint venture partnership allows them to leverage the resources of both organizations to support the work in this uniquely collaborative team focused on attracting, preparing, developing and retaining highly effective school teachers and leaders across Texas.
Highly committed to public education, Devron Armstrong manages the Best In Class coalition at The Commit Partnership. Devron has more than fifteen years of experience as an education professional, and is currently a 2020-2021 fellow in Leadership ISD’s Civic Voices Fellowship in the Dallas, Texas area. He has taught and coached all subjects across grades 5 – 12 while serving in various capacities such as content leader, teacher leader, Dean, Dean of Instruction, and Assistant Principal.
As a founding Dean and Dean of Instruction at two large public charters in the Houston area, Devron observed, coached and evaluated a cohort of teachers across all grade levels and disciplines and shaped school culture using a fully restorative justice-based approach. Due to the hard work of the staff, teachers, parents, students, and community, 100% of students since the school’s first graduating class have earned a high school diploma and admission to a two- or four-year college at both schools.
Devron has also worked as a professional development consultant. He supported campuses and districts in developing targeted academic intervention plans using MAP essential reports. Devron also works as an adjunct professor at Houston Community College in the Alternative Teacher Certification Program. In his spare time, Devron pursues his passion for health and nutrition and rollerblading with his business and non-profit Wholelistic Foods.
A public-school graduate from Killeen High School in Killeen ISD, Devron earned his master’s in education – Administration and Supervision from The University of Houston Main Campus in 2012. Devron graduated with a B.A. in Business Administration from Tarleton State University in Stephenville, TX in 2006. Devron is actively certified as a K – 12 principal and generalist (grades 4 – 8) with English as a Second Language supplemental from the State Board for Educator Certification. He is currently pursuing an advanced degree in Theology from Dallas Theological Seminary. Devron currently lives and serves in West Dallas area.
Deputy Director (Communities Foundation of Texas)
Betsy joins Best in Class (through Communities Foundation of Texas) with over thirteen years of human capital experience and expertise in both public and private schools. She most recently worked with Dallas ISD where she worked to support the design and implementation of the Teacher Excellence Initiative.
Betsy began her career as a consultant with Accenture in New York City and Washington, DC. Betsy is a native Texan and grew up attending Richardson ISD. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Barnard College.
Ana Luz Hernandez
As a brown girl born and raised in East Austin, Ana Luz quickly realized that the American Dream was not accessible to kids that looked and sounded like her. Ana Luz’s early exposure to community organizing and education advocacy through her immigrant mom undoubtedly influenced her decision to explore work that spoke to her values and convictions.
Although she launched her career engaged in advocacy work, she soon realized she had a knack for details and found cross-functional projects rewarding. She particularly enjoys building trust and relationships through the work. In her most recent role she helped Dallas ISD launch a new headquarters, executed a relocation strategy, and managed the renovation of 72,000 square feet of office space. Ana Luz holds a Master of Public Administration from New Mexico State University, a B.A. in Political Science, and a B.A. in Anthropology from Southwestern University.
Associate (Communities Foundation of Texas)
Ernestine was born and raised in Chicago and recently joined the Educate Texas team in January 2019. She believes, like Former First Lady Michelle Obama, that, “with an education, you have everything you need to rise above the noise and fulfill every last one of your dreams.”
Ernestine has spent the last 20 years advocating for young people to have the confidence, opportunity and capacity to fulfill their life dreams through her work in school reform efforts and policy change initiatives where she has served in roles that range from citywide strategist for dropout prevention with Chicago Public Schools, to her most recent work with the Steans Family Foundation as their senior program associate designing a plan to support young people from disinvested communities to successfully transition out of college and into meaningful careers.
Garrett spends his days working to ensure that each child is provided an equitable opportunity to obtain the highest quality of education in Texas public schools as the Senior Officer of Education Strategies for the Williams Family Foundation (of Todd Williams, Executive Director of the Commit Partnership and Education Advisor to Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings). Prior to joining the Foundation, Garrett was the Director of Special Projects and Special Assistant to Superintendent Mike Miles in Dallas ISD, and Policy Program Coordinator for Teaching Trust, working with teachers to develop their advocacy and education policy skills.
Before his career took him into public education, Garrett was the Chief of Staff for the Justice of the Peace in Irving, Director of Legislative Policy for a Texas House of Representatives campaign, worked for the Inspector General’s Office for the US Department of Health and Human Services, spent four years with the National Student Leadership Conference as Program Director for the policy program in Washington D.C., and was the Regional Director of North Texas for Student’s for Barack Obama on the President’s 2008 campaign.
Garrett attended Southern Methodist University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude, with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science. He is from New Orleans and he and his wife, Loretta, along with their two sons, live in Irving’s Historic Hospital District.
Managing Director (Commit)
Dominique McCain embodies dedication and commitment. She began her career as a classroom teacher in Aldine ISD and quickly became a teacher leader and instructional coach. Through modeling best practice in preparation, planning, and instruction, her work proved impactful in developing and fortifying the instructional capacity of campus and district faculty.
In 2014, Dominique accepted an opportunity to support the efforts of Dallas ISD through its Teacher Preparation Program. As Senior Manager, she oversaw the transformation and redesign of the program focused on sustained quality.
After acknowledging the need for a strong start for both teachers and students, Dominique continued making a significant impact in the district by serving as the Director of Instructional Strategy for the Dallas ISD Early Learning Department. In this role, she oversaw all curriculum, instruction, assessment, and professional development for the district’s PK-2 grade classrooms.
Best In Class Advisory Board
The Best In Class Advisory Board is a group of local business, civic, and philanthropic leaders committed to ensuring every that children of every race, ethnicity and economic background is taught by highly effective, well-prepared, and diverse teachers and school leaders. Advisory Board members serve as advocates for the vision and mission of Best In Class by influencing and supporting strategic actions to achieve the goals of Best In Class.