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Deborah Stipek appointed to endowed professorship

The new Judy Koch Professorship of Education is in the field of early childhood education, a central focus of Stipek's scholarship.

Deborah Stipek
Deborah Stipek

Professor Deborah Stipek, former dean of the Graduate School of Education, was appointed, as of October, 2013, to a new endowed chair: the Judy Koch Professorship of Education.

Stipek's research focuses on preschool- and elementary school-aged children, instructional effects on children's achievement motivation and school reform. Her work advances the understanding of how classroom conditions affect both effort and interest in academic tasks. She is particularly concerned about policies and practices that afford children of color and children living in poverty the educational opportunities of their more affluent peers.

Stipek was GSE dean from 2001-2011. Prior to joining the Stanford faculty, she was a professor at UCLA and director of its Corinne Seeds University Elementary School and its Urban Education Studies Center. She has served on the Board on Children, Youth and Families at the National Academy of Sciences, directed the MacArthur Foundation's Network on Teaching and Learning and is a member of the National Academy of Education. She has a PhD in developmental psychology from Yale University.

The new professorship is in the field of early childhood education. It was established with a gift from Judy Koch, founder of the Bring Me a Book Foundation, which provides children's books and read-aloud workshops to libraries in underserved communities.

Koch, a former junior high school English teacher, began the foundation to empower parents as they help their children learn, and to create a tradition of reading at home. Koch hopes that the new chair will encourage Stanford’s commitment to early childhood education and more generally, greater appreciation of the importance of parental involvement in children's literacy development.

Read Stipek's August 2013 op-ed in the San Jose Mercury News about the benefits of preschool education.

Stipek offers tips to parents about what to look for in preschool programs.

A research initiative launched in 2012 by Stipek and colleagues at UCLA looks to enhance the teaching of math in early childhood settings.