We pursue innovative, research-based solutions to the most pressing problems of educational theory, practice, programs, and policy in North Carolina, the nation, and beyond.

We empower educators and scholars to lead; to think creatively, act with passion, and strive for excellence and equity for all.

Toward those ends, we welcome and actively seek productive partnerships across disciplinary and institutional boundaries, working closely with all stakeholders within and beyond formal institutions of education.

We are keenly aware of our rapidly changing landscape, which features disruptive forces and trends, both positive and negative. We face seemingly irreversible decreases in state investments in P-20 institutions of public education, and slow to flat growth in federal investments in basic and applied research. These changes have mandated new, fundamentally different funding models for institutions of higher education — models that could compromise the financial viability of academic units absent systemic adjustments.

Among positive forces and trends, we see an increasingly diverse society and a healthy emphasis on creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship. Global skills and habits of mind are key 21st-century educational outcomes in the midst of sweeping technological advancement. These trends will inevitably change the very nature of how we design, deliver, enact, and gauge success in teaching and learning within educational institutions.

Combined, these positive and negative forces require major and measured changes in how we conduct and support our work. We will not merely react to these challenges. We intend to reimagine our School of Education. We will thrive, further empower our collaborative community, deepen our impact, ensure our viability and sustainability, and continue to make strides toward realizing our goals. This plan is the first stage toward repositioning the UNC School of Education to stand strong and deliver on its promise for decades to come.

Strategic Goals

The UNC School of Education has evaluated the current landscape among our aspirational peers, especially those who have been working toward achieving equity in educational access and outcomes for all.

The School has also taken a hard look at its current position and capacity, including strengths and opportunities. We have explored ways to foster collaboration to advance knowledge through research; amplify and sustain meaningful impact; and empower innovative educators, professionals, and scholars to lead in their respective careers and institutions.

The following strategic goals are non-hierarchical and intended to work collectively. These goals, which were critical to the realization of the School’s 2018-2022 Strategic Plan, continue to provide strategic direction for our work.

Goal 1

Lead in research, teaching, and public engagement to earn our position as one of the nation’s preeminent schools of education.

Goal 2

Reimagine and transform the preparation of educators, professionals, and scholars for the 21st century in both formal and informal learning settings and institutions.

Goal 3

Identify and cultivate core, distinctive initiatives to tackle persistent and emerging local, state, and national public challenges.

Goal 4

Achieve financial stability and sustainability to ensure substantial and lasting impact.

Goal 5

Foster shared understanding and commitment to the School’s stated goals, and nurture a community that promotes the well-being, professional growth, and productivity among faculty, staff, and students.