Faculty and Staff

Pauline Lipman, PhD


Pauline Lipman is professor of Educational Policy Studies and Director of the Collaborative for Equity and Justice in Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her teaching, research, and activism grow out of her commitment to social justice and liberation. Her interdisciplinary research focuses on race and class inequality in education, globalization, and political economy of urban education, particularly the inter-relationship of education policy, urban restructuring, and the politics of race. Pauline is the author of numerous journal articles, book chapters, and policy reports. Her newest book, The New Political Economy of Urban Education: Neoliberalism, Race, and the Right to the City (Routledge, 2011), argues that education is integral to neoliberal economic and spatial urban restructuring and its class and race inequalities and exclusions as well as to the potential for a new, radically democratic economic and political social order. Her previous book, High Stakes Education and Race, Class and Power in School Restructuring, received American Education Studies Association, Critics Choice Awards. In 2011, she received the American Education Research Association Distinguished Contribution to Social Contexts in Education Research, Lifetime Achievement Award.

Pauline was a founding member of Teachers for Social justice in Chicago and as an active member of TSJ she has been involved in grassroots education organizing against education privatization. She works with parents and students to advocate for strong, equitable, democratic neighborhood public schools and community-driven school transformation.

Rhoda Rae Gutierrez

Program Director

Rhoda Rae Gutierrez is currently a PhD student in Educational Policy Studies-Social Foundations at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the program director at UIC’s Collaborative for Equity and Justice in Education. At CEJE, she has collaborated with teachers to engage in critical teacher inquiry and to integrate critical pedagogy in the classroom, and has organized teacher workshops and public colloquia on education justice issues. Her research interests include globalization in education, particularly the migration of teachers from the global south to north, and inequities in urban education.

Rhoda is a parent of two Chicago Public School students and is an activist with Parents 4 Teachers, a Chicago-based grassroots parent organization that works in solidarity with teachers, students and community organizations for education justice. She is also very involved in the struggle for an elected representative school board with the citywide coalition Communities Organized for Democracy in Education (CODE). Rhoda has served on the board of directors of the Crossroads Fund, a public foundation that supports social change grassroots organizing in Chicago, and Pintig Cultural Group, a Filipino American political theater organization. She is also the former Chicago chapter coordinator of GABRIELA Network, a Philippine-US women’s solidarity organization.

Eric Gutstein, PhD

Faculty Associate

Eric (Rico) Gutstein is a professor in curriculum and instruction at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has worked with CPS schools since 1994, supporting students, teachers, administrators, and support staff in a variety of ways. He was part of the Design Team that founded Chicago’s Social Justice High School (Lawndale) in 2005 and has worked with the school since that time. He teaches and studies mathematics for social justice in urban contexts.

Dr. Gutstein also was a founding member of Teachers for Social Justice, an organization of teachers/educators of all kinds and education activists. As part of TSJ’s leadership, he has been active in the struggles against education privatization in Chicago and nationally, and has also worked to develop critical and culturally relevant curriculum and pedagogy for use in K-12 schools.

Kelly Vaughan, PhD

Project Coordinator and Lead Researcher, Chicago School Closings Research Project

Dr. Kelly Vaughan is a recent graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago, Curriculum and Instruction doctoral program and a project coordinator and lead researcher with the UIC Collaborative for Equity and Justice in Education. Kelly is a former Chicago Public Schools teacher, where she was a lead teacher in one of Chicago’s small schools on the Southeast side. She also has experience working in a non-profit community organization as a community educator, where she focused on issues of peace and economic justice. Currently, Kelly teaches undergraduate and graduate level courses in curriculum and instruction and literacy education.

Kelly is a member of Teachers for Social Justice and is active in struggles to support an elected school board and to create just and equitable schools for all children. As a parent of two Chicago Public School students, Kelly is active in her children’s neighborhood school and an advocate for children with special needs. Kelly’s research interests include curriculum history, African American education, and the impact of education policy on parents, students, and communities.