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Rachel S. White

Assistant Professor


Dr. Rachel S. White is an Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership & Policy Studies at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Dr. White’s research centers around 1) issues of power, voice, diversity, and inclusion in education policy making and implementation processes, and 2) examining structures and policies that contribute to or counteract equitable and socially just K-12 education. Dr. White is also the founder and principal investigator of The Superintendent Lab--a central, online hub for data, research, insights, and innovation on the school district super-intendency, including The National Longitudinal Superintendent Database (NLSD). Dr. White teaches Education Law and Policy, Policy Issues in Education, Policy and Politics of K-12 Education, and Academic Writing.

Dr. White is a former local school board member/vice president and assistant high school cross country and track & field coach. She also previously served as a policy analyst for the Michigan Association for School Administrators and as the Associate Director of Policy and Advocacy for The Ohio College Access Network. Dr. Rachel S. White received her Ph.D. in Education Policy from Michigan State University, M.A. in Education Leadership and Policy from The Ohio State University, and B.A. in Public Policy from The University of Michigan.

Awards and Recognitions

Recent (2022-2023) Awards or Noteworthy Accomplishments

UCEA Jack A. Culbertson Award Recipient, 2023

UTK EURECA Faculty Research Mentor Award, 2023

Early Career Award, Education Policy Collaborative, 2022

Appointed, Regional Advisory Committee (RAC) Member- Appalachia, 2023


Recent (2022-2023) articles/books/chapters:

White, R.S. (2023). Ceilings made of glass and leaving en masse?: Examining superintendent gender gaps and turnover over time across the United States. Educational Researcher. DOI: 10.3102/0013189X2311631

White, R.S., Schneider, J., & Mavrogordato, M. (2023). Belonging: Do English learners feel included? AERA Open. DOI: 10.1177/23328584231179171

Collins, J., Gottlieb, D., Knight-Abowitz, K., Murray, B., Saultz, A., Schneider, J., Stitzlein, S., & White, R. S. (authors listed in alphabetical order) (2023). Helping school districts function more democratically. American School Board Journal.

White, R.S., Jerman, J., Fischer, H., Lovegrove, M., McDonald, A., & Patrick-Rodriguez, A. (2023). Institutional structures as mediators for diversifying state education policymaking bodies. The Educational Forum. DOI: 10.1080/00131725.2023.2224849

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