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Paula Burdette

As a Senior Program Associate-Special Education Fiscal Data, Paula Burdette supports the Center for IDEA Fiscal Reporting (CIFR), funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs.

CIFR helps state education agencies understand and comply with fiscal reporting requirements. Burdette and her colleagues’ work with all 60 states and non-state jurisdictions helps ensure accurate reporting and supports appropriate use of federal special education funds.

Prior to joining WestEd in 2015, Burdette served as Co-Principal Investigator for the Center on Online Learning and Students with Disabilities at the National Association of State Directors of Special Education. Her research included the foundational studies on how students with disabilities access fully online and blended learning across the nation, how state policies interact with practices that affect students, and issues surrounding parent engagement with their children’s fully online learning.

Burdette also directed Project Forum, a center with the goal of researching critical issues in special education and producing concise, easy-to-read manuscripts of the findings from surveys, interviews, extant reviews, and policy forums.

Burdette also served as the State Improvement Grant coordinator at the Delaware Department of Education, and taught students with disabilities in multi-categorical settings in Oklahoma.
She serves on the Arlington County Public Schools (VA) Special Education Parent Teacher Association and is the parent liaison between the county and a secondary program.

Burdette received a bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University, master’s in education from the University of Central Oklahoma, and PhD from Virginia Tech in educational leadership.