Scholars to discuss race and education at IU Bloomington symposium

Four leading scholars of race and education will be at Indiana University Bloomington on Friday, Sept. 16, for a daylong symposium organized to engage graduate students, undergraduates and others in discussion of issues ranging from inequality in K-12 schools to affirmative action in college admissions.

posterThe symposium, in the Frangipani Room of the Indiana Memorial Union, is sponsored by the Department of Sociology, the Center for Research on Race and Ethnicity in Society, the Asian American Studies Program and the Latino Studies Program, with support from the College of Arts and Sciences.

“This is an outstanding combination of national and internationally known scholars who take innovative but different approaches to the study of race and education,” said Brian Powell, James H. Rudy Professor and chair of the sociology department. “These differences should result in a lively, thought-provoking symposium that is especially timely given the many challenges facing education.”

Presentations will include:

  • 10 a.m.: Douglas Downey, professor of education at the Ohio State University, “Fifty Years Since the Coleman Report: Rethinking the Relationship Between Schools and Inequality.” Downey is highly regarded for his expertise on educational inequality, including the influence of non-school factors. He earned his Ph.D. from IU Bloomington.
  • 11 a.m.: Karolyn Tyson, professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina, “Is Special Education Racist?” Tyson’s research examines how school processes and student attitudes affect racial inequality. She is the author of “Integration Interrupted: Tracking, Black Students and Acting White After Brown.”
  • 2 p.m.: Ruth López Turley, professor of sociology at Rice University and director of the Houston Education Research Consortium, “Connecting Research and Policy to Reduce Racial Inequality in Education.” Turley’s work uses social science research to help educators and policymakers close achievement gaps based on race, ethnicity and socioeconomic status.
  • 3 p.m.: Natasha Warikoo, associate professor in the Harvard Graduate School of Education, “The Diversity Bargain and Other Dilemmas of Race, Admissions and Meritocracy at Elite Universities.” Warikoo’s work examines cultural processes surrounding diversity in schools, especially colleges. She is the author of “Balancing Acts: Youth Culture in the Global City.”

A panel discussion will follow the research presentations at 4 p.m. The symposium is free and open to the public.


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