Michelle Trelstad

Director of Early Learning and Community Education

Brooklyn Center Community Schools District 286

Getting to know Michelle...

Michelle started her career in 1993 when she applied for the ECFE School Readiness and Family Literacy Position. Twenty-two years later, she has built a strong foundation for Brooklyn Center's Early Learning Programming as the district's Director of Early Learning and Community Education. Michelle is directly responsible for all Early Learning Programming (scheduling, budgeting, staffing, evaluation, curriculum development, behavior management, student assessment, outreach/community partners, state reports, and grant writing). She oversees (as a high level admin) all of the Community Education Programming (Baby Steps, Bright Start, Adult Basic Education and the Community Corner). These programs all have coordinators to run the day to day task, but Michelle manages the overall budget.


Michelle directly supervises 20 staff members and indirectly supervises 16. She spends a large portion of her time managing, coaching and evaluating her staff. When hiring new staff members, Michelle looks for individuals who are data driven in decision making, has a "children first" mentality, knowledgeable in early childhood and family education, willing to learn, focused on equity, and a team player. Once on the team, there is a combination of shadowing and mentoring to train new staff. Her overall budget for Early Learning and Community Education is $1.4 million. She references the Community Ed Finance Manual often to ensure that she is in compliance with the state.


Michelle partners with the city of Brooklyn Center to provide opportunities for students to engage in a variety of activities not offered through school. Students in the Bright Start program can go on field trips sponsored by the city and take swimming lessons at the Community Center for a reduced cost.

Early Learning Initiative: McKnight Pathway School

In the 2011-2012 school year, Earle Brown Elementary became a part of the Early Learning Initiative as a McKnight Pathway School. This 3 million dollar grant provided our district the opportunity to build our early learning program and add three all-day preschool classes to our school. Michelle was and still is a major figure in the success of this addition to our school community. We are in the 5th year and second installation of this initiative.
Brooklyn Center schools look to improve literacy

About me...

Minh Strusz

IB PYP Coordinator at Earle Brown Elementary

1500 59th Avenue North

Brooklyn Center, MN 55430