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Education Reform, Communities, and Social Justice: Exploring the Intersections

2022 Conference
Video of May 25 paper panel: School Discipline, Self-Efficacy & School Funding
Video of June 1 paper panel: School Choice, Privatization, Organizing & Covid
Video of June 8 paper panel: Communities, Schools & Covid
Video of June 15 paper panel: Newark & New Jersey
CLICK HERE for all available 2022 papers and presentation power points
2021 Conference  
Video of June 2 paper panel: Community Schools, School Safety & Restorative Justice
Video of June 16 paper panel: Social Justice & Youth Voices
Video of June 30 paper panel: Shaping Public Policy
CLICK HERE for all available 2021 papers​​

2020 Conference
Video of May 20th kickoff plenary with Diane Ravitch.
Video of June 3rd paper panel  
Video of June 10th paper panel
Video of June 17th paper panel
Video of June 24th plenary on Alternatives to High Stakes Standardized Testing
Video of July 15th paper panel
Video of July 29th paper panel
CLICK HERE for all available 2020 papers

Photo credit: Ryan Good

Made possible by generous support from

Why this conference?

Over the past twenty years, neoliberal education reforms have gained increasing momentum across the United States, emphasizing school choice, market discipline, standardized testing, high-stakes evaluation, privatized management, and the reframing of public education as a site for capital investment. Proponents argue that competition, combined with standardized measures of performance, forces traditional public schools to operate more efficiently and makes it easier to allocate resources to the people, interventions and organizations making the most progress. Critics counter that neoliberal reforms exacerbate educational inequalities and can have dramatically differential consequences for low-income and wealthier communities.


Understanding the intersections between these reform strategies and questions of social justice, community development, and urban policy calls for interdisciplinary engagement that bridges the confines of traditional academic disciplines. Increasingly, scholars of psychology, education, politics, sociology, urban studies, economics, planning and many other fields are asking what broader impacts neoliberal efforts to reform public education are having, particularly on our most vulnerable communities.

To further this important conversation, we are hosting the fifth annual one day convening at Rutgers University's Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning & Public Policy, to enable researchers studying the diverse implications of recent school reforms to share their findings and ideas, and to help shape a broader collective research agenda.

All are welcome to attend and participate in the conversation!

Conference Planning Committee

Bruce D. Baker, Rutgers New Brunswick                                               Stephen Danley, Rutgers Camden

Drew H. Gitomer, Rutgers New Brunswick                                            Charles M. Payne, Rutgers Newark

Julia Sass Rubin, Rutgers New Brunswick                                            Saul A. Rubinstein, Rutgers New Brunswick


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