Actualizing educational equity requires that we change the way conceptualize and address challenges in education. We believe in the transformative power of culturally responsive, collaborative, and creative problem-solving, where diversity in thought, perspective, and background are embraced. Our unique assessment and support model emphasizes the importance of diverse, comprehensive, and multi-disciplinary teams working in collaboration in order to be able to tackle complex problems and promote on-going accountability.
Meet the Team
We are a team of equity warriors, dedicated to supporting educational progress at individual, systemic, and institutional levels
KANDACE FORRESTER, PHD, LEP
Founder & CEO
Dr. Kandace Forrester is a Licensed Educational Psychologist and educational consultant. She has served in the field of education for over 15 years in a variety of capacities, including as a school psychologist, district administrator, and charter school board member. Her work focuses on culturally responsive psychoeducational assessment, MTSS, restorative practices, behavioral and mental health support, and alternative discipline.
Dr. Forrester is the founder and CEO of the California Institute for Educational Progress, a consulting and assessment agency committed to providing high-quality, culturally responsive assessment data, tools, and resources to students, parents, and educational stakeholders for the purpose of promoting and supporting equitable access to education for underserved populations. Dr. Forrester also serves as a CDE approved technical assistance facilitator for districts with significant disproportionality in special education.
Dr. Forrester works throughout Northern California providing professional development, coaching, and workshop trainings on issues related to educational equity, including implicit bias, disproportionality, and the school to prison pipeline. Her greatest passions include helping students to achieve academic, behavioral, and emotional success and supporting schools and districts to become more culturally responsive and equitable for the benefit of all students.
WALE FORRESTER, MPA
CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Wale Forrester earned his Master’s in Public Administration from Golden Gate University and he currently uses his skills and training in a variety of capacities. Mr. Forrester is a member of the Oakland Fire Department where he currently serves as a Lieutenant. In his position in the City of Oakland Fire Department Mr. Forrester leads several community partnerships with the local school district and other non-profit entities to promote career exploration, entrepreneurship, and character development. Mr. Forrester is also a co-founder of ShowerPill, a revolutionary lifestyle brand that actively supports several community-service and disaster relief programs. Mr. Forrester is an avid reader, committed business professional, and dedicated mentor with unique experiences and expertise in the non-profit and corporate sectors.
CHRISTY YATES, MS,NCSP,LEP
In California, Christy is a Licensed Educational Psychologist (#3277), a Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) and a credentialed School Psychologist. Christy has over 12 years experience working with students in settings from Preschool through age 22. In addition to her experience as a school psychologist, Christy taught Special Education in K-12 environments as both a Resource Support Program Teacher and a Special Day Class Teacher. Christy is also a Love & Logic Parent Trainer and has conducted Project Parent trainings. She is trained in Mindfulness Practices, Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She has developed and conducted workshops on Dyslexia, De-Escalation in the Classroom, Restorative Practices, Trauma Informed Care and Self-Care for teachers and caregivers.
CARMEN PERKINS, MBA
Carmen Perkins is a speaker, DEI facilitator and workshop leader dedicated to helping leaders embrace, value and operationalize diversity and inclusion. Carmen provides training's and professional development for K-12 school districts, nonprofits, businesses, colleges, and universities to name a few. Carmen’s childhood experiences fueled her passion for educational reform, leading her to work in the education sector for 15+ years in the fields of Operations, Human Resources, and Student Services. In 2016 Carmen co-founded PROJECT EDQUITY, a consortium of consultants, trainers, and facilitator experts in diversity, equity, and inclusion. She is a member of the Bay Area Diversity Council, is a CTE Advisory Board member for a K-12 School District as well as sits of the board of the Restorative Schools Vision Project. Carmen holds a Bachelor's in English Literature and a Master’s In Business Administration focused on Organizational Leadership & Management from Holy Names University. She is an avid reader and currently resides in Northern CA. When she is not teaching or training, she is spending time with her husband and 3 children.
KIMBERLY SEYFORD, MA
Kimberly Seyford is a secondary public school teacher who earned an English teaching credential at University of California, Davis and an Education Specialist credential with an added Autism Authorization at Brandman University. She has 13 years of experience in the classroom teaching both general education and special education and managing a caseload of special education students categorized as Emotionally Disturbed or diagnosed with Autism. Her areas of expertise include devising academic accommodations and modifications for students in both special education and mainstreamed classes; creating and implementing behavior intervention plans for students with social and behavioral challenges; and establishing appropriate IEP goals to support student’s social, behavioral, academic, and emotional needs. Ms. Seyford is currently working on obtaining her Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and hopes to offer therapy services in the future to help children and their families cope with mental illnesses, past traumas, and other emotional struggles.
DUSTIN BINDREIFF, ED.D
Dr. Dustin Bindreiff has spent nearly 20 years serving as a mentor, educator, and administer. Dr. Bindreiff is committed to creating educational opportunities for all students. In addition to being a teacher, he has served as a SELPA Coordinator and a PBIS Coordinator. His leadership in working with schools and partnering with staff supported the transformation of systems driven on compliance to those engaged in attaining successful instructional outcomes for all students. Dr. Bindreiff has participated in a number of Equity and Special Education Improvement teams for over a dozen school districts.
Dr. Bindreiff’s research in the area of establishing multi-tiered systems of support, including school wide positive behavior support, has both been published and presented nationally. Additionally, Dr. Bindreiff has provided professional development to district leaders, principals, teachers, paraprofessionals, and parents in meeting the instructional needs of students grounded in rigor, addressing exclusionary disciplinary practices, and the implementation of PBIS.
As a, Dr. Bindreiff is committed to ensuring the educational success of all students. He believes that being an education partner with students, families, communities, and fellow educators is essential to creating the opportunities needed to achieve success for all. Dr. Bindreiff leads by establishing systems and building community.
Dr. Bindreiff attained his doctorate in Educational Leadership for Special Education from Portland State University by examining the absence of implemented behavior interventions and identifying implementable behavior supports. Recently, he has partnered with a number of publishing companies and researchers to explore how to better motivate and engage struggling students.
Dustin is committed to creating educational opportunities and access for all children and supporting students, families, community members, and educators toward this common goal.