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Melanie Bertrand, Ph.D.

Melanie Bertrand is an associate professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies & Practice at the University of Arizona and a former K-5 teacher. Her research explores the potential of youth and community leadership to improve schools and challenge systemic racism and other forms of oppression in education. Her work pushes the educational leadership field to include youth--especially youth of color and other youth facing injustice--in expanded conceptions of leadership.

Carrie Sampson, Ph.D.

Carrie Sampson is an assistant professor in the Division of Educational Leadership and Innovation at Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, Arizona State University. Her research focuses on educational leadership, policy, and equity from three interrelated perspectives -- democracy, community advocacy, and politics. Drawing from a range of critical theories and employing mostly qualitative methods, Dr. Sampson's published work includes peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, and policy reports on school boards, school desegregation, English learners, and community organizing in education. She has also received various awards and recognition for her scholarship, including the National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship, Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, American Educational Research Division A (Administration, Organization, and Leadership) Early Career Award, and the UCEA William J. Davis Award for the article entitled “(Im)Possibilities of Latinx school board members’ educational leadership toward equity."

Show Highlights

  • The White Innocence Playbook
  • What happens in school board meetings
  • Strategies for school board members

Connect with Melanie and Carrie

Melanie’s Faculty Page

Carrie’s Faculty Page

Bertrand, M., & Sampson, C. (2022). Exposing the white innocence playbook of school district leaders. Equity & Excellence in Education.

Sampson, C. & Bertrand, M. (2021). Counter-storytelling, metaphors, and rhetorical questioning: Discursive strategies of advocacy toward racial equity in school board meetings . Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education

Sampson, C. & Bertrand, M. (2020). “This is civil disobedience. I’ll continue.”: The racialization of school board meeting rules. Journal of Education Policy, 1-21. 

Bertrand, M., & Sampson, C. (2020). Challenging systemic racism in school board meetings through intertextual co-optation. Critical Studies in Education, 1–17

Additional Resources

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This show is built on three principles

  • The  Power of Preparation- Discover ways to develop a plan to address inequities in schools.
  • The Power of Persuasion- Gain an understanding of the art of influence and create a sense of urgency towards change.
  • The Power of Persistence- Recognize how to endure challenges as they may arise.
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Transform your school and your classroom with these best practices in equity

Leading Equity delivers an eye-opening and actionable discussion of how to transform a classroom or school into a more equitable place. Through explorations of ten concrete steps that you can take right now, Dr. Sheldon L. Eakins offers you the skills, resources, and concepts you’ll need to address common equity deficiencies in education.


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