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McLaughlin, Milbrey

Milbrey McLaughlin
Milbrey McLaughlin
Academic Title 
Emeritus Professor
Other Titles 

David Jacks Professor Emeritus of Education and Public Policy
Director, The John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities:
Director, Center for Research on the Context of Teaching

Contact Information
(650) 723-2109
LF 386
Program Affiliations 
SHIPS (PhD): International Comparative Education
Research Interests 
Community/Youth Development and Organizations
Educational Policy
School and District Reform

School context; planned change; teacher workplaces; government policy; inner-city youth; neighborhood-based organizations; community youth development.

Dr. McLaughlin's research combines studies of K-12 education policy in the U.S and work on the broad question of community-school collaboration to support youth development. Her research on public education focuses on how school teaching is shaped by "context" issues such as organizational policy, social-cultural conditions of the schools, districts and communities. Within communities, she is involved with local efforts engage whole communities-schools, community organizations and agencies, parents, faith-based institutions-in developing new strategies and capacity to promote youth development broadly considered. Dr. McLaughlin is Co-Director of the Center for Research on the Context of Teaching, an education research center that analyzes how teaching and learning are shaped by their contexts and the connection between teacher learning communities and educational reforms. She is Director of the John Gardner Center for Youth and their Communities, a partnership between Stanford University and Bay Area communities to build new practices, knowledge and capacity for youth development and learning.

"Schoolteaching does not take place in generic classrooms stripped of subject matter concerns, mindless of the backgrounds, needs, and interests of the students who come to school, or impervious to department, school, district, and other context influences. To ignore context is to ignore the very elements that make policy implementation a "problem," and contribute to the highly variable local responses that trouble policymakers."

- from her article, "Listening and Learning from the Field"

  • PhD (Education and Social Policy), Harvard University, 1973
  • Ed M (Education and Social Policy), Harvard University, 1973
  • BA (Philosophy), Connecticut College, 1963

Since 1983

Associate Professor of Education (1983-1989)

Chair, Evaluation Training Program (1983 - 1987)

Director, Center for Research on the Context of Teaching (1987 -)

Professor of Education (1989-1999)

Director, John Gardner Center for Youth and their Communities (2000-)

David Jacks Professor of Education and Public Policy (2000 -)

Senior Social Scientist, Rand Corporation (1973-1983); Visiting Professor, University of California, Los Angeles (1977-1980).

  • Urban Youth and Their Institutions (Ed 179/279)
  • Policy Analysis in Education (Ed 221A); Macro and Micro Issues in Policy Analysis (221B)
  • CRC Research Practicum (ED 471X)

Communities of Practice and the Work of High School Teaching (in press);

"Teachers engaged in evidence-based reform: Trajectories of teachers' inquiry, analysis and action" (in press) in Teachers Caught in the Action;

"School/Community Connections: Strengthening Opportunities to Learn and Opportunities to Teach" (in press) in the Handbook of Research on Teaching;

Community Counts: How youth organizations matter for youth development (2000);

"Investing in teaching as a learning profession: Policy problems and prospects" (1999) (with Linda Darling-Hammond) in Teaching as a Learning Profession: Handbook of Policy and Practice;

"Listening and Learning from the Field: Tales of Policy Implementation and Situated Practice" in The Roots of Educational Change (1998);

Teachers' Learning: New Policies, New Practices (with Ida Oberman, 1996);

"Policies that Support Professional Development in an Era of Reform" in Phi Delta Kappan (with Linda Darling-Hammond, 1995);

Urban Sanctuaries: Neighborhood Organizations in the Lives and Futures of Inner-City Youth (with Merita Irby and Juliet Langman, 1994);

Teacher's Work (with Judith Warren Little, 1993).

Member, Board of Directors, National Network for Youth;

Member, Panel on Youth and Communities, National Research Council;

Member, Advisory Board, Children and Youth Community Health Initiative, California Wellness Foundation;

Member, Advisory Board Irvine Foundation Urban Initiative;

Member, Advisory Board, Partners in School Innovation; Trustee, MidPeninsula High School;

Member, Advisory Board, National Writing Project, Urban Initiative; Advisor, USED Blue Ribbon Schools Commission;

Member, Advisory Board, Center for Research on Equity and Diversity in Education; Advisor, National Center on Schools and Communities;

Member, Editorial Board, Teachers and Teaching;

Member, American Educational Research Association (AERA);

Member, National Academy of Education.