Jan Barrick, M.Ed., founded Alpha Plus Learning Systems in 1986 to help students improve their performance in school. Her mission quickly grew into helping schools improve their “report card grades” under the various state and federal accountability systems.
Since 1990, when the Oklahoma Legislature created the state’s first academic standards and mandated a new type of state tests, the Alpha Plus team of educators began developing tools to help educators meet the changing mandates in state and federal law.
Alpha Plus uses scientifically based methods to help low-performing schools become high progress. Teachers and administrators learn to use data in making decisions that improve instruction and school performance. (Click on graph to view enlargement.)
Alpha Plus Educational Systems has been customizing services to meet the needs of rural, suburban and urban schools since 1992. Alpha Plus data and training helps educators improve instruction and, as such, state-mandated test scores, A-F Report Card grades, and federally regulated performance in English/reading, mathematics and science. Alpha Plus schools have outperformed the state average for every year of the A-F Report Cards.
The Alpha Plus Facilitator Team
An educator since 1973, Jan Barrick has taught in elementary through college levels and specializes in learning disabilities and gifted and talented programs. With bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from the University of Oklahoma (OU), Jan tutored children while developing and implementing teacher-training programs. The author of The Way to an A: How to Help Your Child Succeed in School and publisher of the Success with OAS Mathematics textbook following her Prepare to PASS series of student workbooks, the Alpha Plus CEO is a frequent conference presenter on school improvement strategies. Jan Barrick is an active member of the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, State Chamber, Oklahoma City Rotary Club, and on the Board of Advocates for OU’s Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education as well as the Board of Trustees for the Oklahoma Foundation of Excellence.
With her bachelor's degree in Education/English from OU, and master's degree in Education/Guidance and Counseling from Phillips University, Anita Trojan retired from teaching at Enid Public Schools. As an Alpha Plus Facilitator since 2015, Anita uses her 34 years as an English teacher and secondary guidance counselor in helping teachers primarily in northern Oklahoma schools..
With her bachelor’s degree in Animal Science from Oklahoma State University, Laura Pierce is an alternatively certified teacher for middle-level science and secondary math. She is also in the last semester of a master's in School Administration at Northeastern State University. Laura taught for three years at United Methodist Boys Ranch in Gore (all subjects, Grades 6-12), and four years each at Gore and Webbers Falls schools. In the latter, she used the Alpha Plus program. Laura became an Alpha Plus Facilitator for northeastern Oklahoma in 2017.
Before joining Alpha Plus in 2018, Sandra Valentine taught Kindergarten and third grade in Oklahoma public schools. With bachelor's degrees in Education and Early Childhood from Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Sandra is Oklahoma certified in Early Childhood Education and is well-versed in all aspects of the Reading Sufficiency Act. Central and Southwestern Oklahoma facilitator for Alpha Plus, she recently completed writing Grade 3 Success with OAS Reading, which will be published this summer.
A consultant who specializes in training for school leadership teams, Diana Jackson has 35 years of experience in three districts. A teacher, principal and federal programs director as well, Diana retired in 2015 as superintendent of Flower Mound Public Schools. She was part of the team that led the Flower Mound to a National Blue Ribbon School award and an AdvancEd Accreditation score in the top 1% internationally for the 2008-2014 cycle.
The Alpha Plus Central Office Team
With a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from UCO, Wendy Pratt’s public service career began as Deputy Press Secretary for Governor Henry Bellmon who signed into law historic education reforms and investment in 1990 (House Bill 1017). For the next 20 years, she worked closely with State Superintendent Sandy Garrett, serving as Communications Director for the State Department of Education from 1998 to 2011. Wendy joined Alpha Plus in 2013 and now serves as Chief Information Officer.
Toni Blewett spent 15 years working in private business and government agencies as an IT specialist before joining Alpha Plus in technical support five years ago. Today, Toni coordinates services to customers including publishing and distribution of materials, and manages billing and shipping services as well.
With 37 years in education, Jim Childers spent most of his tenure as elementary, middle and high school principal in the Pawnee, Seminole and Crescent Public Schools. His bachelor’s and master’s degrees are from the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO), Edmond. Jim is a School Services Representative who helps principals and teachers use Alpha Plus tools; he also writes proposals and helps distribute materials to schools statewide.
Helping Schools Make the Grade Since 1990