SOE News

Peabody Pulse

Improving physics instruction focus SOE@Work lunchtime talk on Wednesday

The inaugural SOE@Work lunchtime talk on Oct. 19 will feature SOE faculty member Sherick Hughes, physics and astronomy faculty member Laurie McNeil and doctoral students Wenyang Sun, Jeremy Trad Godwin and Joseph Hooper talking about an effort to measure effectiveness of changes to physics instruction at Carolina. The presentation is entitled "Physics 2.0: Evaluating the Influence of Innovative Pedagogy on Two Entry-Level College Physics Courses." The SOE@Work talks will showcase collaborations in which our faculty and students are working with others across Carolina. The presentation begins at 12:30 p.m. Lunches will be provided.

Sherick Hughes presenting about social context of schooling today

Faculty member Sherick Hughes will speak today as part of the UNICEF at Carolina speaker series, sponsored by the Curriculum in Global Studies. Hughes will discuss the social context of schooling and urban/rural education as well as critical race studies and black education. He will be focus on the issue of “Urban Education: U.S. and Africa, with a focus upon Malawi." The talk will be held today at 6:30 pm in Dey 313.

Dana Thompson Dorsey provides keynote for minority student conference

Faculty member Dana Thompson Dorsey provided the keynote address or the Minority Student Achievement Network annual conference held in Chapel Hill last week. MSAN is a national student organization comprised of numerous high schools from across the country. It works to understand and address racial disparities in schools in an effort to eliminate the achievement gap. The theme of this year’s conference was “Every Step Leaves a Trail,” with a focus on student advocacy. The title of Thompson Dorsey’s presentation was “Take Action: Understanding the Issues and Finding your Student Activist Voice.”

Doctoral student Bud Harrelson leads session at state school nurses conference

Bud Harrelson, a doctoral student in Policy, Leadership and School Improvement, led a plenary session on Friday at the 33rd Annual N.C. School Nurse Conference in Greensboro. Harrelson’s talk, entitled “School Nurses: Allies and Advocates for LGBTQ Students,” focuses on how school nurses can contribute to creating safer schools for LGBTQ students. Following the keynote, Harrelson participated in a panel discussion, “Working with LGBTQ Students,” with Jill Moore from the UNC School of Government, Iredell-Statesville School District School Nurse Kimberly Morse, and Ellen Essick, Section Chief for N.C. Healthy Schools at the N.C. Department of Public Instruction.

Gregory Cizek cited in Wall Street Journal story

Faculty member Gregory Cizek was quoted in a story by The Wall Street Journal published over the weekend that examined a sudden increase in test scores by students in some schools in Brooklyn, New York. The story points out dramatic increases in scores in some schools, which Cizek said indicates a need to investigate whether cheating led to the increases. The story is available here.

Doctoral student Ronda Taylor Bullock conducts Twitter chat on racial bias

Doctoral student Ronda Taylor Bullock conducted a Twitter chat last week that explored issues around racial bias and its effects in classrooms. Bullock, a student in Policy, Leadership and School Improvement, is a winner of a CUBE social innovation grant at Carolina, and has been working to establish a group called “we are,” short for “Working to Extend Anti-Racist Education.” The Twitter chat was sponsored by the Institute of African American Research. You can find the chat thread on Twitter by searching for the hashtag “iaarchat.”

Doctoral student Rebekah Duke awarded Public Service assistantship

Rebekah Duke, a doctoral student in Learning Sciences and Psychological Studies, has been awarded an assistantship from the Carolina Center for Public Service. Each year the center awards up to ten assistantships to graduate students who then provide skills trainings for undergraduate students who are taking part in the Buckley Public Service Scholars program.

Panel discussion to examine education policy in 2016 elections

The Carolina Education Policy Student Association and the Ph.D. in Policy, Leadership and School Improvement are hosting a panel discussion on Oct. 25, examining education issues in the upcoming elections. The event will feature Ann McColl, legislative director at the N.C. State Board of Education, faculty member Eric Houck, Julie Kowal of BEST NC and Kwan Graham, from Parents for Educational Freedom. The event will be held in Peabody 02, starting at 12:30 p.m. Lunch will be provided.

GSA hosting benefit concert Nov. 13

The Graduate Student Association is hosting a benefit concert next month to raise money for The Champ Foundation for research into a cure for Pearson Syndrome. Pearson Syndrome is a rare inherited disease that affects infants, causing anemia, liver disease and other problems. The event will feature four local bands and improvisational comedy. The concert will be held from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Second Wind Café, 118 E. Main Street, in Carrboro. Tickets may be purchased online. For information, contact GSA President Abby Ampuja at abbya (AT)

Publications, presentations, etc.

Finch, MA, Goff, P., and Houck, EA. “Opting Out of the Bill: Voluntary Adequacy Funding in Maryland.” Journal of Education Finance 42(1): 28-48.

Doctoral student Rebekah Duke co-presented a paper – “Executing a Needs Assessment Survey: Transfer Edition” – on Sunday, Oct. 16, at the National Conference on Students in Transition in New Orleans.

Be the first to know! 'Like' us on Facebook. Follow us on Instagram.

Want to be among the in-the-know SOE crowd? Click “Like” on the School’s Facebook page and you’ll get the latest dope straight in your news feed. Join the SOE Facebook here. And, we now have an Instagram. Follow us at

Got news?

Have you got news to share? A new paper published? Make a conference presentation? Win a grant? Do you know of an upcoming SOE event of interest to others? A shoutout, about yourself or someone you know? Send your news to Mike Hobbs at


Wednesday, Oct 19

SOE@Work Colloquia: Sherick Hughes, Laura McNeil and students
Peabody 02

Tuesday, Oct 25

CESPA/PLS Panel Discussion: NC Education Policy at the 2016 Elections
Peabody 02

Saturday, Oct 29

Annual Alumni Awards Dinner
George Watts Hill Alumni Center

Saturday, Nov. 5

Safe Schools NC “Educate with Pride” conference
8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m
Smith Middle School

Wednesday, Nov. 9

GSA Brown Bag: Meet the Dean!
Peabody 02

Sunday, Nov 13

GSA Benefit Concert for Pearson Syndrome
1:00p.m. to 5:00p.m.
Second Wind Cafe, Carrboro

Wednesday, Nov 16

SOE@Work Colloquia: Sharon Derry and Todd Boyette
Peabody 02