Back to School: K-12 Education Experts

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Note for TV and radio: The University of Pennsylvania has an on-campus ISDN line and ready access to a satellite uplink facility with live-shot capability.

Adolescent development, youth mentoring, early college high schools 

Dr. Michael Nakkula specializes in adolescent development, risk and resilience, counseling and youth mentoring.  His research and teaching focus on resilience development among low-income children and youth.

Bullies, youth violence 

Dr. Duane Thomas is an expert in bullies, youth aggression and youth violence. His areas of expertise include violence prevention, at-risk children and youth, the risk/protective factors for urban African-American children/youth and academic-community partnerships.  As a part of the newly established Philadelphia Collaborative Violence Prevention Center, he studies which programs are most effective in preventing youth violence.


Cheating, moral education, school rules and discipline

Dr. Joan Goodman is an expert in moral education, cheating, school rules and discipline.  Dr. Goodman examines school discipline and its moral underpinnings, or a lack thereof.


Early childhood education, teacher quality and preparation 

Dr. Frances O’Connell Rust specializes in early childhood education.  Her research focuses on topics related to teacher preparation and teacher quality.


Math, urban education, parental engagement 

Dr. Jeannine Remillard is an expert in math -- both teaching and learning -- and a parent's role in encouraging math learning.  She can talk about math homework, teaching math in bilingual and bi-cultural classrooms, mathematics curriculum and standards-based school reform as it relates to math and urban education.


National Center of Fathers and Families, racial desegregation, minority education 

Dr. Vivian Gadsden is the director of the National Center on Fathers and Families at Penn, the associate director of the National Center on Adult Literacy at Penn and an expert in desegregation cases and minority education.


No Child Left Behind, Standardized Tests 

Dr. Andrew Porter is an expert in educational policies, such as No Child Left Behind; standardized testing; the achievement gap; and psychometrics. He is dean of the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania. 


Race to the Top, education reform

Co-author of "The Implementation Gap: Understanding Reform in High Schools," Dr. Elliot Weinbaum is an expert in Race to the Top, high school reform, performance-based accountability systems and intergovernmental politics.  His work focuses on how state and federal policies have an impact on schools and school districts.  His most recent research includes a federally funded study on No Child Left Behind and its affects on schools across Pennsylvania.


Same-sex schooling

Dr. Peter Kuriloff can discuss the educational environment in same-sex classrooms and private schools and their role in affluent communities.  He has researched the impact of various perspectives of masculinity and how it affects boys' learning and emotional development.  He's the research director for the Center for Study of Boys' Lives.


Teacher workforce issues: Quality, turnover, shortages

Dr. Richard Ingersoll is a nationally known expert in teacher quality, qualifications, turnover rates and shortages.


Youth violence, parental engagement

Dr. Howard Stevenson specializes in high-risk youth and aggressive behaviors. He's the author of "Stickin' to, Watchin' over, & Getting' With: An African-American Parent's Guide to Discipline."  He's an expert in African-American psychology, at-risk youth and high-risk boys, family and parental engagement and racial integration and re-segregation.




Media contact:

            Jill DiSanto-Haines at 215-898-4820 or