Mayors’ Education Policy Advisors Network (EPAN)

Formed in May 2003, the Mayors’ Education Policy Advisors Network (EPAN) is a national network of senior municipal staff who are working with mayors of the nation's 75 largest cities on key issues related to education reform and school improvement.

Mayors are increasingly using their leadership capacity and access to city resources to strengthen and support public schools - even when they have no formal authority over school districts.  EPAN enables senior mayoral advisors and municipal staff to share information, insights, and lessons learned regarding strategies that cities have employed to help school districts improve public education and student achievement.  EPAN is made possible by support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


The network is open to mayoral education policy advisors or mayor's office staff in the nation's 75 largest cities. Currently, more than 80 senior municipal staff members representing large cities across the country participate in EPAN.


Monthly e-newsletter:  Members receive monthly e-newsletters highlighting education resources, city efforts around the country, and announcements of important education policy and funding news.

Biannual meetings:  The YEF Institute covers travel expenses for EPAN meetings typically held in both the summer and winter.  By meeting at least once per year, EPAN members have the opportunity to hear from national experts in the field of education reform, as well as share challenges and lessons learned.

Peer learning communities: EPAN members can participate in a number of smaller peer learning communities focused on specific topics of interest.  Current peer learning communities include: high school reform and alternative high schools (with a focus on PreK-16 and using data to track graduation rates); educational outcomes for English Language Learner (ELL) students and students of color; public engagement (with a focus on parental engagement and higher education); and early childhood.

EPAN online community:  EPAN members have access to a new online community enabling them to find and share relevant resources through a searchable database, and to communicate and collaborate with each other online through discussion forums and listservs.

Access to resources:  The Institute makes available a wide range of resources and promising practices on school improvement to support the work of mayors and their education policy advisors.  These resources include research support from the YEF Institute to investigate key questions raised by EPAN members.  The Institute also offers targeted dissemination of new YEF Institute publications to members of EPAN.

Opportunities to showcase city efforts:  EPAN members frequently have the opportunity to highlight innovative local initiatives in Nation's Cities Weekly, periodic audioconferences and webinars, and NLC conferences.

Sample Resources

EPAN meeting agenda (June 2009) (PDF) | EPAN conference call agenda (November 2009)(PDF) | EPAN Race to the Top comments (August 2009) (PDF) | EPAN i3 comments (PDF)

How to Join

EPAN is only open to senior mayoral advisors from the 75 largest cities. For more information, contact Marjorie Cohen at (202) 626-3052 or