Whitworth Communications

For Immediate Release

October 5, 2005

Governor appoints Whitworth Education Professor to Serve on State Council

Whitworth School of Education Visiting Professor O.J. Cotes has been appointed by Governor Christine Gregoire to serve on the new Washington Learns K-12 Education Advisory Council. Washington Learns is an initiative Gregoire is leading to study and improve Washington state's public-school system.

Cotes and other members of the K-12 Advisory Council are examining the issues affecting students, including transitioning young children into kindergarten and preparing high-school students for post-secondary learning opportunities, and making recommendations for improvement to the Washington Learns Steering Committee.

Cotes holds a master of education degree in administration from Whitworth College. She worked with the Spokane School District for 34 years as a teacher - she taught at both the middle and high school levels - and as an administrator in staff development. In this position Cotes worked with administrators and teachers in the areas of instructional skills and strategies.

Cotes is actively involved in many state grants and programs involving new teacher mentoring, new teacher certification, and teacher recruitment. She works with Future Teachers of Color and the Teaching Academy, which are programs that encourage high-school student to consider careers in education. Cotes also supports Native American communities and programs for students in the Spokane region.

For more information about Washington Learns, please visit


Julie Riddle, public information specialist, Whitworth College, (509) 777-3729 or jriddle@whitworth.edu.

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