Business, Education

Maryland School for the Blind specialist appointed to National Board of Education Sciences

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BALTIMORE, MD—The White House has announced that Maria de la Concepcion Hernandez Legorreta (Conchita) has been appointed to the National Board of Education Sciences. Members of the Board are appointed by the President and are highly qualified to appraise education research, statistics, evaluations, or development.

“MSB is delighted about Conchita’s appointment but not at all surprised. She has already established herself as a leader with a local, national, and international presence. She makes a real difference for children with vision loss, notably those who identify as Latinx,” said MSB Superintendent and CEO of MSB, W. Robert Hair.

“I am so honored to have this amazing opportunity to uplift the voices of students, families, and adults with disabilities, so research is reflective of their experiences.” said Conchita.

The National Board for Education Sciences comprises 15 voting members appointed by the President. The board’s duties include advising the Director of the Institute of Education Sciences and serving as a “board of directors” by approving or disapproving the Institute’s priorities as proposed by the Director. The board ensures that the priorities of the Institute and the National Education Centers are consistent with the organization’s mission.

Conchita is a low vision Latina immigrant. She grew up in California and now resides in Washington, DC. Conchita is the founder and Chair of METAS (Mentoring Engaging and Teaching All Students). This non-profit organization trains educators working with blind/low-vision students and other disabilities in Latin America. She engages lawmakers in policy discussions around people with disabilities and inclusion in this role. Conchita is one of the co-founders of the National Coalition for Latinx with Disabilities. Currently, Conchita works as the Maryland Blind and Low Vision Specialist supporting the education of blind and low vision students in the state through the Maryland School for the Blind and the Maryland State Department of Education. Conchita strives to be a voice for change for educators, professionals, and advocates to make full inclusion a reality for people with disabilities.

Hernández Legorreta conducts research in areas of education focusing on blind English Learners and students from underrepresented communities. Hernández Legorreta received her bachelor’s degree from Saint Mary’s College of California and her master’s degree from Louisiana Tech University. She is currently a Doctoral Candidate at George Washington University. Hernández Legorreta founded a non-profit organization, METAS, which works with Spanish-speaking communities in the United States and internationally in areas of education and policy. Hernández Legorreta has written and presented extensively around education, best practices, and accessibility in publications, including Oxford Press, Refinery 29, Allure Magazine, and the Disability Visibility Podcast.

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