Dr. Rebecca McKinney Director, Office of Gifted Education at Colorado Department of Education
Rebecca McKinney, EdD, is the director of the Office of Gifted Education with the Colorado Department of Education. She holds a doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Denver. She began her career in 1997 as an elementary teacher and athletic coach. After several years in elementary classrooms, Dr. McKinney moved into teaching in an early childhood classroom, teaching three and four year olds, where her passion for strength based instruction developed. Upon leaving the classroom, she spent several years as district level coordinator, a district director, and now as a state director. A focus of Dr. McKinney’s work continues to be creating equitable, culturally responsive systems and structures that remove barriers for students. During her time as the Gifted Education Director in the largest school district in Colorado, she implemented systems that increased identification of underserved gifted learners, supported school leaders in developing equitable strength based programming for diverse learners, and facilitated professional learning for educators, leaders, and district administration. Dr. McKinney currently designs and facilitates professional development, oversees program evaluations, and provides ongoing support to district and school leaders. She has a passion for supporting educators and school leaders as they continue to grow in the ways they can support and nurture all students. Dr. McKinney presents professionally on a wide variety of topics including but not limited to change leadership, differentiation, family engagement, and instructional strategies. She is a founding partner of Rising Tide Education Consultants LLC.