Education Policy and Planning Program

Graduate students collaborate on a project.

Photo of Angela Valenzuela

Program Head
Angela Valenzuela

The Educational Policy & Planning (EPP) Program prepares the next generation of scholars, researchers, and analysts who will significantly and positively change public education.

Our master’s program (M.Ed.) trains students in education policy analysis. Students gain a theoretical foundation in policy implementation, politics, school law, poverty and educational policy, and critical policy analysis. Our program prepares students for careers as policy analysts, researchers in the public and private sectors, and for entry into a doctoral program in educational policy.

The doctoral program (Ph.D.) prepares future faculty members, policy analysts, and researchers to be thoughtful scholars with a critical focus on issues of equity. Students receive rigorous training in education politics, policy implementation, organizations, race and ethnicity, gender, poverty, social and cultural contexts of education, and economics of education.

Our cohort model provides built-in peer support as students move through the program, while also providing opportunities for inter-generational learning and research collaborations with faculty. In addition, students work closely with faculty mentors to develop a research focus, culminating in the dissertation.

Our faculty members are nationally-recognized experts in high stakes testing, market-based reforms, equity-minded reforms, issues of linguistic and cultural diversity, and school improvement.


Photo of Norma Cantu

Norma Cantú, J.D.


Ken McIntyre Professor for Excellence in School Leadership

With a background as Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights in the Clinton Administration, she teaches topics in civil rights and the intersection of law and policy in education.

Photo of Joshua Childs

Joshua Childs

Assistant Professor

Examines collaborative approaches involving community organizations and stakeholders that improve academic achievement and reduce opportunity gaps for students.

Photo of Terrance Green

Terrance Green

Assistant Professor

Examines principals and school-community engagement/community development, and issues of educational equity and opportunity.

Photo of Jennifer Holme

Jennifer Jellison Holme

Associate Professor, Graduate Advisor

Focuses on the politics and implementation of educational policy with an emphasis on school reform, equity and diversity in schools.

Photo of Huriya Jabbar

Huriya Jabbar

Assistant Professor

Examines the social and political dimensions of market-based reforms and privatization in education, including school choice and decision-making in K-12 and higher education contexts.

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Pedro Reyes

Professor, Acting President UTSA

Focuses on school conditions that foster high academic success for children of poverty, stratification of learning opportunities for children of color, and on state policy that facilitates student success across the education pipeline.

Photo of Angela Valenzuela

Angela Valenzuela

Professor, EPP Program Head

Specializes in urban education from a sociological and multicultural perspective, with a focus on minority youth in schools, particularly at the K-12 level.