Complementing the work of the commission's authors is the work of the Gordon Commission Fellows. The Gordon Fellows is a dynamic group of six emerging pre- and post-doctoral scholars, in the fields of the learning sciences, anthropology, psychometrics, the sociology of education, and education technology. These fellows were assembled to analyze and identify emergent themes, critical innovations, similarities and distinctions, and ultimately synthesize the knowledge produced across the body of the commissioned papers, in brief papers of their own. It was Dr.Gordon's opinion that the work of the commission's experienced authors should be complemented by a younger generation of scholars. These scholars in their ongoing dialogue with him and in their syntheses of more than two dozen papers would add new life and new ideas to the project. During their work together over the spring and summer, each fellow selected overlapping cross-sections of the papers to critically analyze and present, for a series of fellows lead group discussions of each paper. All of this was done under the tutelage of Commission Chairman Edmund W. Gordon and Dr. Ernest Morrell, the current Director of the Institute of Urban Minority Education (IUME) at Teachers College, Columbia University.
The meetings of the Gordon Fellows alternated throughout the spring and summer months between the Institute of Urban Minority Education (IUME) in New York City and the CEJJES Institute, a cultural, educational, and research foundation dedicated to improving the educational and social conditions for all disenfranchised people which is located in Pomona, New York. In addition to Gordon and Morrell, the Fellows meetings were co-facilitated by the Executive Officer of the commission, Ms. Paola Heincke, and attended by project consultants E. Wyatt Gordon, Emile Session, Curtis Malik Boykin, and IUME Assistant Director Veronica Holly.
These Fellows meetings provided a platform for the six emergent scholars to put the papers into conversation with each other, with their peers, and with their mentors to create a rich and dynamic analysis. The Fellows meetings have culminated in the production of six synthesis papers, authored by the Fellows, providing their analyses, recommendations, major findings, and perceived implications for practice and instrumentation of development policy.
The Gordon Commission Fellows are:
Ph.D. in educational psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, specializing in psychometrics/educational measurement, applied statistics and program evaluation
Keena Arbuthnot received a Ph.D. in educational psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, specializing in psychometrics/educational measurement, applied Statistics and program evaluation. She holds a M.Ed. degree in educational psychology and a B.S. degree in mathematics. In 2005, Arbuthnot became a Lecturer on education and a post-doctoral Fellow at Harvard Graduate School of Education. She is currently an assistant professor at Louisiana State University in the Department of Educational Theory, Policy and Practice. Arbuthnot conducts research that addresses issues such as: the achievement gap, differential item functioning, psychological factors related to standardized testing performance, stereotype threat, and mathematical achievement and African-American students. Arbuthnot has written a book entitled Filling in the Blanks: Understanding the Black/White Test Score Gap that was released 2011. She belongs to several prestigious organizations namely the National Council on Measurement in Education, American Educational Research Association, Kappa Mu Epsilon Mathematics Honor Society, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated. View Gordon Commission Fellow Synthesis Paper.
Doctoral student in the Measurement, Evaluation, and Research Methodology (MERM) program at the University of British Columbia
Juliette Lyons-Thomas is a third-year doctoral student in the Measurement, Evaluation, and Research Methodology (MERM) program at the University of British Columbia. Her current research focuses on think aloud protocols as a validation method in educational assessment. Her interests also include accountability in education, validity, and cross-cultural assessment. Juliette received her M.A. from the New York University (NYU) in educational psychology, specializing in psychological measurement and evaluation, and her B.S. from McGill University in psychology. View Gordon Commission Fellow Synthesis Paper.
Doctoral student in the Social Welfare program at the University of California, Los Angeles
Jordan Morris is a second-year doctoral student in the Social Welfare program at the University of California, Los Angeles. She received her B.A. in psychology from the University of Maryland, College Park and her Ed.M. in school psychology and education policy from Teachers College, Columbia University. Her research interests include child and adolescent development, critical media literacy, and race and schooling. View Gordon Commission Fellow Synthesis Paper.
Doctoral student in the Sociology of Education program at New York University (NYU)
Catherine Voulgarides is a fourth year Ph.D. student in the Sociology of Education program at New York University (NYU). She currently works as a research assistant at the Metropolitan Center for Urban Education at NYU under the leadership of Dr. Pedro Noguera. At the center she has worked on and assisted with the Technical Assistance Center on Disproportionality in Special Education. Before joining the center, she worked for the AmeriCorps Vista project in Phoenix, Arizona coordinating and developing English as a Second Language (ESL) programs for immigrant parents in the Phoenix school system. She holds a B.A. in economics and is a graduate of McGill University in Montreal, Canada. She also holds a MST in special education from Pace University in New York City. Her research interests are centered on the intersection between federal disability legislation and racial and ethnic disproportionality. She has presented at AERA, several special education conferences and was invited to be mentored at the Sociology of Education Association conference. She is currently working on her dissertation and publishing an article that examines the fragmented institutional and organizational processes that are associated with inequitable outcomes in special education. View Gordon Commission Fellow Synthesis Paper.
Amanda Walker Johnson
Ph.D. and M.A. in anthropology (sociocultural) from the University of Texas at Austin's African Diaspora Program
Amanda Walker Johnson received both a Ph.D. and an M.A. in anthropology (sociocultural) from the University of Texas at Austin's African Diaspora Program. In 2004, she served as both a research associate for the Research and Evaluation Division at the Intercultural Development Research Association in San Antonio, Texas and as an assistant instructor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin. In 2005, Johnson was hired as an adjunct faculty member in the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences at University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas. In 2006, she was hired as an assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Johnson's areas of expertise include African-American anthropology; critical race theory and political economy of race in the United States; critical educational theory; feminist theories of race, body, and nation; anthropology of science; and cultural and identity politics in the African Diaspora. View Gordon Commission Fellow Synthesis Paper.
Sherice N. Clarke
Doctoral student in education at the University of Edinburgh
Sherice N. Clarke is pursuing a Ph.D. in education at the University of Edinburgh, anticipating the award of her doctorate in the spring of 2012. Her thesis is titled, The Inclusive Museum: understanding adult ESOL in museums. Clarke currently holds a Masters in Education, concentrated in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from the University of Edinburgh, as well as a Bachelors degree in art history from Hunter College. Her research interests include engagement, agency, identity, classroom discourse and narrative. She is currently serving a postdoctorate appointment at the University of Pittsburgh's Learning Research & Development Center. Additionally, Clarke has been an instructor in the University of Pittsburgh's Linguistics Department, a teacher trainer at Edinburgh's Institute of Applied Language, and an English teacher and EFL department adviser at the Sathit Bangua School in Samut Prakam, Thailand. In 2008, she was awarded a Funds for Women Graduates fellowship from the British Federation of Women Graduates Foundation. View Gordon Commission Fellow Synthesis Paper.