Shirley Carlson, PMP, is a Senior Technical Assistant at the American Institutes for Research (AIR). Her primary responsibilities include providing strategic leadership coaching to build district and school capacity to reduce achievement gaps and to ensure the use of effective continuous improvement planning and implementation processes at all levels, in both onsite and virtual settings. Carlson has trained and coached district and school teams in data inquiry cycles, an improvement science approach employing iterative cycles of inquiry (Plan/Do/Study/Act) to test change ideas using practical measures on multiple projects, most recently in Springfield Public Schools (a large urban district in Illinois) and through REL Midwest projects in both Minnesota and Illinois. Carlson is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and has served as the project lead for multiple projects. She has extensive experience in district and school improvement practices. She has more than 40 years of experience in the field of education.