Ross E. Mitchell speaks Feb. 15 on segregation in bilingual and deaf education

Dr. Ross E. Mitchell, from the School of Education at the University of Redlands, speaks at Sacramento State on Friday, Feb. 15 on the topic: “Challenging Contexts: Battles over the Legitimacy of Segregated Schooling in Bilingual and Deaf Education.” The talk runs from 5:30-6:30 in Hinde Auditorium in the University Union. American Sign Language interpreters will be provided.  Please RSVP here.

This conceptual exploration, playing on the double meaning of challenging (encountering difficulties/barriers vs. questioning/protesting), asks participants to (re)consider what it means to offer segregated schooling in the face of, or act of, challenging contexts in bilingual and deaf education. Implications for leadership and curriculum are emphasized.

Mitchell’s research includes school population studies, with particular attention to deaf and hard-of-hearing student populations and ethnoracial student segregation in schools and classrooms. He also investigates school-level policies for organizing curriculum and instruction and conditions affecting academic achievement testing and outcomes.

Mitchell is a Fellow of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Institute in the Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk at the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to joining the Redlands faculty, he was Senior Research Scientist and Associate Director of Program, Policy, and Population Studies in the Gallaudet Research Institute at Gallaudet University, Washington, DC. Publications include “Demographics for deaf education,” a chapter in Research in deaf education: Contexts, challenges, from Oxford University Press. Mitchell is also the lead author in “School setting behavior that characterizes social justice: An empirical approach to illustrate the concept,” published in AERA Open.




Sarah Ryan to discuss prospects for long-term English Learners March 1

Dr. Sarah Ryan, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, comes to Sacramento State on Friday, March 1 to share her research of long-term English Learners. Her talk, “Exploring the Size and Characteristics of the So-Called Long-term English Learner Population across States,” runs from 5:30-6:30pm in Eureka Hall Room 223 (location changed). RSVP here.

Ryan notes that students identified as English learners (ELs) retain this label until they meet state-established criteria for reclassification as fully English proficient. In order to be reclassified, no matter how long he or she has been designated an EL, a student must attain particular scores on standardized language proficiency assessments. Students not yet reclassified who have been designated as ELs for 5 to 7 years or more are often referred to as long-term ELs, or LTELs. In 2015 the Every Student Succeeds Act began requiring states to report the number of such students.

“It is unclear whether the act of identifying students as long-term ELs will induce more effective instruction and supports for these students,” says Ryan. “At a more basic level, we still know relatively little about the contours of this population outside of a small set of states and districts where almost all existing research on LTELs has been conducted.”

Ryan’s study begins to address this knowledge gap by describing variation in the size and characteristics of the potential LTEL population across 15 U.S. states from 2009 to 2015. Her results demonstrated wide variability in the size and characteristics of the LTEL population across states, including among states with similar criteria for EL reclassification. The findings have implications for policy and future research, and they raise questions about the relevance and consequences of the LTEL label, Ryan says.

As a former educator in K-12 public schools, Ryan says she believes that research can be more effective in addressing educational inequities when researchers are willing to work with and learn from practitioners. Her research focuses on understanding the sources and consequences of group-level differences in educational processes and outcomes, particularly for multilingual children and youth, as well as the conditions under which policy and practice can contribute to or ameliorate these disparities. She brings to this work specific expertise in research design, quantitative methods, and sociological theory.

Dr. Ryan is an Assistant Research Scientist at the Wisconsin Center for Education Research, housed at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is also the Director of Research, Policy and Evaluation for WIDA. She holds a BA in education and Spanish from Edgewood College and a MS in English language acquisition and bilingual education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She received a PhD in education policy from the University of California-Riverside and completed an Institute of Education Sciences postdoctoral research fellowship at Carnegie Mellon University.

EDD Short Video Contest deadline Feb. 1

The Champions of Change Short Video Contest sponsored by the Doctorate in Educational Leadership program at Sacramento State is now accepting entrants through February 1, 2019.* The contest, which this year features EDD program faculty, offers a $1,500 top prize to the filmmaker submitting the best short video.

The contest is unique for its small field of contestants, with one contestant matched with one faculty member to produce a video of no more than 5 minutes. The small, well-defined contest offers filmmakers a good chance of winning one of the cash prizes and the freedom to demonstrate their skills. Contestants are free to incorporate animation, illustration, the use of drones, or other skills as they desire.

Contestants must register their interest in the contest by February 1, and will thereafter be matched with their subject faculty member. Then contestants have until May 1 to submit their completed video. A screening event – to which all subjects, filmmakers and their families and friends are invited – will be held at Sacramento State on May 20, when the winners will be announced.

See last year’s winners, contest guidelines and rules.

*deadline has been extended


Berkeley scholar Michael Dumas targets “antiblackness” in education in Nov. 30 talk (event cancelled)

Michael DumasNote: This event has been postponed and will not take place on Nov. 30.


Although chattel slavery is no longer legal – with the huge exception of U.S. prisons – the social relation of Master-Slave is still constitutive of the relationship between white and Black. That is to say, the Black is still positioned as Slave, and the relations of power remain unchanged. To theorize antiblackness is to explore what Saidiya Hartman has called “the afterlife of slavery.”

In his Nov. 30 talk “Against the Dark: Recognizing and Responding to Antiblackness in Education,” Michael J. Dumas, Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of Education and Department of African American Studies at University of California, Berkeley, will contend that schooling and our very imagination of education are sites of antiblackness – sites of Black suffering, as he has written. He argues that although there is no Black freedom to be found in schools, which are inherently and deeply anti-Black, schools can be spaces of Black fugitivity, which is always subversion of the racial state, a refusal of the desires of the Master. His talk, sponsored by the Sac State Doctorate in Educational Leadership, will run from 5:30-6:30pm in Hinde Auditorium.

Dumas’ research is primarily concerned with how schools become sites of Black material and psychic suffering and anti-black violence, how disdain for blackness promotes an inequitable distribution of educational resources, and ways that anti-blackness influences the discourse of education policy and broader public discourses on the worth of economic and educational investment in Black children.

Dumas has a Ph.D. in Urban Education with an emphasis in social and educational policy studies from The Graduate Center of The City University of New York. His research sits at the intersection(s) of the cultural politics of Black education, the cultural political economy of urban education, and the futurity of Black childhood(s). His most recent publication is “Beginning and Ending with Black Suffering: A Meditation on and Against Racial Justice in Education,” which appears in a new book from Routledge edited by Eve Tuck and K. Wayne Yang titled “Toward What Justice? Describing Diverse Dreams of Justice in Education.”

Dumas’ publications have appeared in such journals as Teachers College Record, Race, Ethnicity, and Education, and Urban Education. A recent article in Harvard Educational Review offers a critical reimagination of Black boyhood, and another in Educational Policy analyzes how My Brother’s Keeper serves as a neoliberal reform intended to “manage” the “problem” of Black young men and boys.

Ed.D. program adds 2 core faculty

Joining the core faculty of the Doctorate in Educational Leadership program for fall 2018 are Dr. Stephen E. Brock and Dr. Frank Adamson. Core faculty members are acknowledged by the selection committee as having the disciplinary background and the scholarly record to prepare doctoral level graduates focused on promoting equity, student achievement, school change, and shaping P-12 and community college educational policies. Core faculty members are eligible to serve as chairs or members of examination and dissertation committees, advisors and mentors to doctoral students, and members of governance bodies in the Ed.D. Program.

Dr. Frank Adamson joins CSUS from the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education, where as Senior Policy and Research Analyst he studied issues of equity and opportunity in education. Some Sacramento State doctoral students are already familiar with Dr. Adamson, as he taught the education finance class in spring 2017.

frank-adamson-headAdamson currently studies the effects of different political and economic approaches to education on student experiences and their performance in schools. His recent volume, Global Education Reform, compares the approaches of privatization and public investment to education policy in six countries. Frank has also studied the impact of system-wide charter school reform on students in New Orleans. Previously, he published on the adoption of assessments of deeper learning and 21st century skills at the state, national, and international levels, as well as on teacher salary differences within metropolitan labor markets in New York and California. He has also completed studies for the USDOE, OECD, IEA, and UNESCO, including analyses of PISA and TIMSS. He uses quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods and his research interests include the economics and sociology of education, U.S. and international education policy, and educational equity and opportunity. Frank began his career in education as a high school English teacher.

Adamson has a Ph.D. in International Comparative Education from Stanford University, a master’s in sociology from Haverford College, and took his undergraduate degree in Comparative Literature (French and English) from New York University while studying in Paris. He is proficient in French and has intermediate proficiency in Spanish. Previously, Adamson was a research associate for SRI International and American Institutes for Research, a research team leader in Benin for World Learning, and an A.P. English teacher.

Since earning his doctorate, Adamson has obtained more than $1.4 million in grants from such organizations as the Hewlett Foundation, Ford Foundation, Open Society Foundations, the American Education Research Association, and others.

His publications include books and chapters coauthored with Linda Darling-Hammond on global education reform, privatization, and assessments. His scholarship includes research for videos, infographics, and policy briefs produced by SCOPE.

“I’m very excited about joining the core faculty and helping the college fulfill its mission, including promoting educational equity. I enjoyed teaching Education Finance last year and look forward to further engaging with the emerging scholars in the EdD program and with the faculty at the College of Education.”



Dr. Stephen E. Brock is a professor and coordinator of the School Psychology Program in the College of Education at Sacramento State. His professional preparation includes undergraduate and graduate degrees in psychology, and a Ph.D. in Education (with anemphasis in psychological studies) at the University of California, Davis, where he researched Attention-deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Brock was selected by the College of Education to receive the 2012-2013 Outstanding Scholarly and Creative Activities Award, and the 2017 Juliana Raskauskas Legacy Lecture Award.

Brock’s primary research and academic interests include:

  • Crisis Theory and School-Based Crisis Intervention
  • Posttraumatic Stress Disorder
  • Attention-deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
  • School-Based Suicide Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention
  • Functional Behavior Assessment and Behavioral Consultation
  • Autism Spectrum Disorders

Brock’s recent publications deal with crisis counseling, intervention and prevention in the schools, helping trauma-exposed students, suicide prevention, and bipolar disorder. He is a founding member of the National Association of School Psychologists’ PREPaRE Workgroup and the author of Workshop 2 of the PREPaRE School Crisis Prevention and Intervention Training Curriculum. Other publications are listed on his full biography.

He teaches a number of courses for the Education Specialist master’s program, including Educational Research; Social, Emotional, & Behavioral Assessment; Functional Assessment of Behavior; Preventive Psychological Interventions; Psychology in the Schools; and Human Development and Learning.

“I am honored to become a part of the core EdD faculty,” Brock said. “I hope that my research in the area of school mental health will add an important perspective to this amazing program.”


Student advocate Alice A. Huffman honored by Sac State

Alice A. Huffman, a woman who has attained wide respect as a leader and advocate for the African American community, is the recipient of an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Sacramento State and the California State University. She will be recognized during Spring Commencement ceremonies on May 18 at Golden 1 Center.

Sacramento State President Robert S. Nelsen said the honorary doctorate is an acknowledgment of the tremendous impact Huffman has had in the region. She and the others receiving honorary doctorates this spring “have transformed Sacramento through their creativity, wisdom, generosity, and work. I am extremely pleased that we are able to celebrate them this spring.”

Huffman clearly represents the aspirations of the CSU for its diverse student body and a more inclusive society. After dropping out of high school, she overcame significant challenges and went on to graduate with honors from UC Berkeley.

Huffman served as a lobbyist and then Director of Political Affairs for the California Teachers Association from 1985 to 1994. She was elected president of the California Hawaii NAACP in 1999, since winning eight consecutive elections. Throughout, Huffman has supported the California State University system and is a former member of the CSU Board of Trustees.

Huffman continues to show her support for students by attending and speaking at events of the College of Education and Doctorate in Educational Leadership program. Her longstanding career as an advocate for educational opportunities for underrepresented youth in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields was evidenced through her Alice Huffman STEM program for youth. The California NAACP has also hosted graduate student interns from the Sacramento State Pathways Fellows grant program.

“Alice Huffman clearly represents the aspirations of the CSU for its diverse student body and a more inclusive society,” said Julian Vasquez Heilig, Director of the Sacramento State Doctorate in Educational Leadership program and NAACP Education Chair. “Her incredible legacy for millions of Americans lies in the fact that she is deeply committed to equality and equity for all Americans, and she is willing to do whatever it takes to achieve those ends. She is an extremely capable, influential and gracious professional.”

2018 Outstanding Dissertation Awards

The authors of four outstanding dissertations completed in 2017 as part of the requirements for the Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership (Ed.D.) degree were honored March 16 at a showcase hosted by the College of Education and the College of Social Sciences & Interdisciplinary Studies. The event showcases the critical research being done by the graduates.

The 2018 awardees are: Katrina Pimentel, Ed.D., Graduate of Distinction; Mark Carnero, Ed.D., Outstanding K-12 Dissertation; Malika Hollinside, Ed.D., Outstanding K-12 Dissertation; and Daniel DeVere, Ed.D., Outstanding Higher Education Dissertation. Dissertations were chosen based on the quality of the research design, the written analysis and summary, and the potential of the dissertation results to transform schools or colleges.

Dr. Pimentel’s dissertation, “Dismantling rape culture: a critical examination of androcentrism in America,” continues in the tradition of feminist scholars in assessing the influence of a male-dominated culture on the lived experience of college students and its relationship to rape culture (androcentric society) in order to facilitate the transformation of society from one that condones rape to one that dismantles it by raising critical consciousness.

In “Education reparation: an examination of Black teacher retention,” Dr. Hollinside focuses on the experiences and workplace factors that positively and negatively impact Black K-12 teacher retention in American schools, finding that K-12 administrators who are oppressive, unsupportive, and culturally incompetent are more likely to drive Black teachers out of their schools.

Dr. Carnero’s dissertation, “Upset the setup: exploring the curricula, pedagogy, and student empowerment strategies of critical social justice educators,” examined the narratives of seven high school critical social justice educators in Northern California to see how they combat traditional schooling through their curricula development, classroom pedagogy, and student empowerment strategies.

In “Perceptions of bicultural accommodation: a critical examination of the academic, cultural, and social experiences of Sikh college students,” Dr. DeVere examines the academic, cultural, and social experiences of Punjabi Sikh American students in a Northern California community college to identify factors that promote or inhibit their progress and success.

Videos of other Outstanding Dissertations can be found on our YouTube channel.

Faculty, student and alumni perspectives about the Sacramento State Doctorate in Educational Leadership Program