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  • Writer's pictureShaElla Askew

New Schools for Alabama Selects Third Cohort for its School Founders Program

BIRMINGHAM, August 10, 2022 – New Schools for Alabama (NSFA) has selected Miriam Moore and Dr. Calandra Sales as the third cohort of its School Founders Program, a highly-selective yearlong fellowship for aspiring charter school founders in Alabama. Moore left corporate America in exchange for the classroom. During her tenure as a math teacher, she earned her Master of Arts in Education and Educational Specialist degrees in Educational Leadership from the UAB. Over the last eight years, Miriam has served as a high school administrator in two of Birmingham’s school districts. Sales most recently served as the director of leader development at IDEA Public Schools in Tampa, FL where she was responsible for coaching and developing school leaders. She has spent more than 18 years in the field of education as a curriculum specialist, instructional coach, content and assessment director, and a classroom teacher. Additionally, two other fellowships were granted to Ladera Frazier and Dr. Mary Holloway, current principals in the Montgomery Public School system.

Dr. Mike Brown, NSFA’s Chief Schools Officer, said, “The School Founders fellowship is NSFA's premier principal program and is a full-time, full stipend fellowship for high-impact leaders partnering with the local community to launch a school. This year, the program welcomed four amazing educators with deep experience and expertise in instruction and school leadership. Creating life-changing educational options for students and families is always the goal. Identifying and nurturing the academic, ethical, and engaging leaders to lead them is our greatest lever. We continue to be inspired by the “whatever it takes” ethos of our Alabama leaders and are excited to support them on their journey in launching high-rigor, high-innovation institutions.” Brown continued, “Fellows Ladera Frazier and Dr. Mary Holloway, in partnership with Phalen Schools and Montgomery Education Foundation, are leading the charge as the Principals of Nixon Elementary and Bellingrath Middle in Montgomery. The fellowship provides them with continuous development in both the adaptive and technical components of effective leadership as they support Montgomery families."

"I am humbled to be selected to participate in the School Founders program because it captures the heart of what education means and simultaneously prioritizes Alabama's student needs. I am excited to spend this development year intentionally focused on closing academic gaps in unique and innovative ways,” said Moore.

Sales stated, "Through intentional development in instruction, operations, finance, and governance, the School Founders Program is giving me the tools and the skills to establish and sustain a high-performing place of learning that's deeply rooted in the community. Our school will provide character and leadership development while affirming student identity and culture to create future advocates for our community and beyond."

Learn more about the School Founders Program at

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