“State of the Research” on School Closure

A collaboration of local scholars will convene a conference on school closures on June 19 at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA from 8:30am-6:00pm in Stiteler Hall.  Registration is open to the public and is a $15 suggested donation to be collected at the event (nobody will be turned away for lack of funds).  The conference is entitled The “State of the Research” on School Closure: A Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference and will bring together researchers who are working across this range of inquiry in the mid-Atlantic region. The goal of this conference is to share findings and approaches, articulate commonalities and divergences across place, and set an agenda for ongoing research and engagement with this and other issues of urban and educational equity. Continue reading

Highlights from National URBAN Conference

On April 30th and May 1st, the first national URBAN gathering took place at UMASS Boston. Forty-five scholars from across the country gathered for a 2-day working conference on “Collaborative Research for Equity and Action in Education.” Funded by a grant from the American Educational Research Association, the conference was designed to bring together scholars who practice different forms of action research to share lessons, identify commonalities and clarify differences in this diverse research tradition. According to Mark Warren, “the URBAN conference came at the right time. Scholars are increasingly looking for ways for their research to be more relevant to addressing pressing needs facing urban communities. Participants left with a stronger understanding of the ways that research can work together with community change agents in support of equity and social justice goals.” Continue reading

Teaching & Researching in Support of Public Ed

On January 24, 2015 the URBAN Philadelphia Node, the St. Joseph’s University Education Unit, Teacher Action Group (TAG), Caucus of Working Educators (WE), and Teachers Lead Philly will host a convening on leveraging quality research in support of equitable and democratic public education in Philadelphia.  Researchers and teachers concerned about the current market-based reforms in education will discuss what constitutes quality schools, consider what collaborative decision-making structures are needed for the Philadelphia School District, and think creatively about how to institutionalize our relationships to move this work forward.

The full program for the convening can be found here.

UAA Pre-conference Workshop

The Urban Affairs Association will host a pre-conference workshop on urban education policy advocacy on Wednesday, April 8, 2015.  Entitled Connecting Research to Urban Education Activism, this workshop will bring together scholar activists who are conducting or want to conduct research in one of the areas listed below and related areas. Participants will briefly discuss their research, identify others who are conducting similar research, explore ways to support and collaborate with activists, and identify venues for disseminating the work in ways that reach audiences beyond the academy.  In addition, the workshop discussants will describe strategies for navigating the academic tenure/promotion system while engaging in policy advocacy and direct engagement outside of the academy.  Continue reading

Philly Node Launch and Symposia at AERA 2014

The URBAN Philadelphia Node will officially launch at the  2014 Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association in Philadelphia!  Descriptions of the sessions that the Philadelphia Node will host are offered below.  Check the conference website for complete and up-to-date information on these and all other conference sessions and events.  Click here for a list of other URBAN hosted events at this year’s AERA meeting. Continue reading

How Students Are Leading Us

Philadelphia’s students have long been a major force in the battle for public education, and for the past decade and a half they have fought valiantly against the encroachment of neoliberalism, the idea that market-based logic can solve non-market problems more efficiently and effectively than governmental or public sector agencies. Leading this charge have been two prominent youth organizing groups, the Philadelphia Student Union (PSU) and Youth United for Change (YUC). Both PSU and YUC have been at the forefront of recent organizing efforts to protest and propose alternatives to the shuttering of 23 schools, the firing of 3,859 educators and support staff, and the elimination of extracurricular programs and arts education from the public schools for the 2012-2013 school year. Continue reading

Outside the School Box

This course explores historical and contemporary challenges involved in the policy and practice of viewing education more broadly than schooling alone. Students will explore several historical case studies, conceptual frames, and current policy challenges, culminating in a research project in service to the Norris Square community in Philadelphia. Continue reading