René Espinoza Kissell

René Espinoza Kissell is a PhD candidate in education policy at the University of California Berkeley specializing in the political economy of urban education, community engagement in district reform, and the racial politics of educational privatization. Her dissertation examines the race and class politics of the ‘portfolio strategy’ in Oakland’s public schools, with a focus on how community stakeholders and policy elites navigate changing district governance through coalition building. A proud product of the Milwaukee Public Schools, René received her BA in Latin American studies and Spanish literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her MA in education policy from UC Berkeley. Outside of graduate studies, she has worked in education through school-level support and community organizing.