About Us

TRANSFORMING TEACHING & LEARNING

We empower educators to bring innovative practices to their classrooms to motivate, challenge, and inspire the diverse learners and leaders of the future.

We’ve brought together some of the most talented and experienced professionals with extensive backgrounds in the educational and corporate spheres with the goal of improving education in our communities. Our state-of-the-art facility serves as an instructional space as well as a laboratory for exploration and learning.

Over 23,000 teachers and countless students have benefitted from KCI programs.

Our Mission

To advance leadership and transform teaching by providing innovative professional learning that inspires students to be lifelong learners.

FAME teachers ISSD project
We Innovate

Discovering new ways to capture the imagination of students and increase their engagement and creativity is critical for a successful educational experience.

MERIT group
We Educate

Introducing teachers and students to new technology and cutting-edge curriculum helps prepare students to meet the challenges of an ever-changing global economy.

MERIT 2015
We Empower

Professional learning at KCI is not limited to acquiring new skills and technology. It includes building the confidence and gaining the inspiration to transform one’s teaching practices.

Our Team

The KCI has brought together some of the most talented and experienced professionals with extensive backgrounds in the educational and corporate spheres with the goal of improving education in our communities.

  • Gay Krause

    Gay Krause

    Executive Director
    Room 4003
    650-949-7113 phone
    650-949-7190 fax
    Executive director, Gay Krause, founded the KCI in July 1998. Gay was responsible for developing and implementing the initial vision to serve K-14 educators in professional development activities. She also led the effort to restore the former Space Science Museum into a fully equipped technology facility to serve K-14 educators, Foothill students, and the community. The KCI is available for professional development activities 24/7 both in-house and on-line throughout the state of California. Prior to July 1998, Gay was a principal of both elementary and middle schools in the Mountain View Whisman School District. Gay served as teacher, middle school counselor, assistant principal and principal for 10 years. Gay received her B.S. degree from The Pennsylvania State University in education and special education, her M.S. degree from the University of Virginia in counseling psychology, and a credential in administrative leadership from San Jose State University and San Francisco University.
  • Cate Tolnai

    Cate Tolnai

    Director of Marketing & Strategy
    Room 4007
    Cate Tolnai supports educators and leaders as Director of Marketing & Strategy at the Krause Center for Innovation. In education since 2002, she brings her experience in classrooms and as a site, district, and county administrator to each of her projects. In 2019, she co-authored the ISTE publication highlighting the impact of game-based learning, "Power Up Your Classroom: Reimagine Learning Through Gameplay." She speaks nationally on digital badges, gamification, and the impact of instructional play for both k-14 students and educators. She's dedicated to amplifying the programs, partnerships, and passions of the KCI community throughout the region and state as well as growing the impact of KCI in both pre-service and in-service educator communities.
  • Kas Periera

    Kas Periera

    Teacher in Residence
    Room 4016
    650-949-7319 phone
    Kas is the current Teacher in Residence at the KCI. She is in charge of curriculum development, course management, and instruction. She is also the Director of the KCI’s Makerspace and Makerspace programs. Kas has long been a KCI affiliate, being a 2012 MERIT Fellow, the miniMERIT Program Director for several years, and a guest instructor in many programs. Most recently, she has been an adjunct faculty member for Foothill and a Lead Maker in the KCI’s Makerspace before stepping into her current role. Kas comes to the KCI from a background of sixteen years teaching high school, the last twelve in the East Side Union High School District in San Jose. As a teacher of Film, Media, and English, she has run the Yearbook along with a daily broadcast television show for several years. Kas has also served as the WASC Coordinator, the Professional Development Coordinator, and a Department Chair at her school site. Most recently, she was one of the co-founders and the Director of the Quicksilver Innovation Program (QuIP), a small learning community for freshmen and sophomores that focuses on cross-curricular and project-based learning. Kas has a B.A. in Literature from UC Santa Cruz, an M.A. in Educational Best Practices and an M.A. in Educational Leadership from San Jose State University, as well as an administrative credential, and a single subject teaching credential in English with a supplementary authorization in Graphic Arts.
  • Justin Sewell

    Justin Sewell

    Director of Partnerships & Programs
    Room 4015
    650-949-7010 phone
    Justin Sewell has joined KCI as the Director of Partnerships & Programs. He graduated from Salisbury University with a B.S. degree in Molecular Biology and he received an M.S. degree in Biotechnology from Johns Hopkins University. After working in a DNA diagnostics laboratory, Justin transitioned to education. He student taught in Vermont and then spent the majority of his teaching career in Baltimore County where he taught Chemistry and Biology and held a department chair position at two high schools. He brought his passion for technology, science, and education to the Silicon Valley Education Foundation where he was responsible for a variety of projects including the development of a middle school computer science course, observing and writing an ethnographic study on 7th grade math edtech products, and working with other nonprofits, companies, districts, and government offices to improve STEM education in the Bay Area.
  • Martha Rubin

    Martha Rubin

    Administrative Assistant
    Room 4017
    650-949-7614 phone
    Martha joined the KCI Team in 2017 as the Administrative Assistant. She oversees the day to day operations, supports programs and workshops, participants and the team. Previously, she worked with the Online Education Initiative at Foothill. She graduated from Adelphi University in New York with a Bachelors in Social Welfare and earned credentials in Early Childhood Education from De Anza, a Multiple Subject Credential from SFSU and a Special Education Credential from SJSU. She spent many years teaching in the Palo Alto School District. Prior to that, Martha was in the print, advertising and promotions business, running her own company, along with fundraising for several causes.

Serving K-14 Educators Since 2000

Over 23,000 teachers have taken KCI courses and programs. It has built a reputation on intensive summer institutes for educators, as well as the courses it provides throughout the year. The KCI has consistently focused on building innovative courses and programs and on evaluating and improving its methodologies.

The KCI’s other key focus has been on partnering with education-oriented nonprofits and foundations to serve the educator segment. Based on this experience and success, the KCI is uniquely positioned to address many of the critical issues facing education and workforce development.

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