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Ms. Carmen Polka

Carmen Polka has worked diligently to infuse critical thinking into her classroom instruction, curriculum, and assessment for more than sixteen years. Recognized as her district’s Elementary Teacher of the Year, Ms. Polka's students and their families have thrived in her classroom culture that fosters strong-sense critical thinking.

Focused on transforming education through implementation of quality instructional practices, Ms. Polka instigated and co-authored the writing of the Colorado Academic State Standards targeting research and reasoning based on the Paul-Elder framework. As a leader and critical thinking expert in her district, she led professional development and coached K-12 teachers to effectively utilize the Paulian theory. As a Scholar of the Foundation for Critical Thinking, Ms. Polka has led focal presentations, academies, workshops, and supports all levels of Paulian implementation in schools, districts, and universities.

Ms. Polka is a Doctoral candidate in the Educational Leadership and Policy Studies program at the University of Northern Colorado. In addition, she is a licensed principal, elementary teacher, and K-12 Special Education teacher.

To contact Ms. Carmen Polka, email: polka@criticalthinking.org.