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As a new administration takes the reins of the federal education research enterprise, the former director of federal education research, evaluation, and statistics will reflect on his experience in leading a research agency within the Bush administration that maintained its independence and integrity, and will offer his thoughts on what must be done to strengthen education research further so as to provide practitioners and policymakers with the knowledge to improve education outcomes substantially.
Grover 'Russ' Whitehurst
Russ Whitehurst is a visiting fellow and incoming senior fellow and director of the Brown Center on Education Policy at The Brookings Institution. Previously he was director of the Institute of Education Sciences at the U.S. Department of Education; U.S. Assistant Secretary for Educational Research and Improvement; Chair of the Department of Psychology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook; and Academic Vice-President of the Merrill-Palmer Institute. He received his Ph.D. in experimental child psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1970. He is a widely respected and influential leader in education research and policy in the U.S. and around the world. His specializations include program evaluation, teacher quality, preschools, national and international student assessments, reading instruction, education technology, and education data systems.
As the first director of the Institute of Education Sciences within the U.S. Department of Education, he is widely acknowledged to have had a transforming effect on the quality, relevance, and utilization of education research. Under his leadership, the Institute received numerous accolades, including a citation from the Office of Management and Budget for having, 'transformed the quality and rigor of education research within the Department of Education and increased the demand for scientifically based evidence of effectiveness in the education field as a whole.'