Parasa started her career as a kindergarten teacher at a K-8 charter school in North Minneapolis. Her students have taught her so much about how to be patient, positive, and persistent in the face of many challenges. Their energy and stories continue to drive her work in education advocacy and policy.
After teaching, she went on to work as a Policy and Advocacy fellow at Charter School Partners where she learned more about charter school law and how to launch high-performing charter schools. During her fellowship, she developed a nonprofit business plan to pilot a new parent advocacy organization called EMPOWER: Education Matters—Parents Organizing and Working for Education Reform.
She also served as a Policy Fellow at Princeton University’s Public Policy and International Affairs program where she and a team of fellows profiled 18 high-performing charter schools for best practices in school expansion. Their research findings and policy recommendations led to the upward expansion of a high-performing charter school in New Jersey.
An Oregon native, Parasa joined the Stand family in late 2012. She holds a B.A. in International Affairs from Lewis & Clark College and is currently finishing a masters program through Hamline University. Parasa’s masters capstone is focused on retaining high-quality teachers at high-need schools.
In her free time, Parasa enjoys scrapbooking, swimming, and dancing.
Why I'm Standing for Children
“I stand for children because I want my students and children across America to have access to an excellent education. Right now, an egregious number of children are falling behind; this reality has and will continue to have a negative impact on many generations. This reality is unacceptable. Our children cannot wait—we must act now. All of our communities must engage and be part of a coordinated effort to demand more high-quality schools and systems for all of our children.”
Photo: Kenton Waltz Photography