Skip to main content

NC State Experts on Back to School

As students return to the classroom, experts from the NC State College of Education are available to speak on public funding for K-12 private schools, serving multilingual learners in rural schools, practices for introducing politics in civics classes, issues of teacher pay and retention, and more.

Politics in the Classroom, Civics

Paula McAvoy is an associate professor of social studies. She can talk about how polarization is affecting schools, how to structure political discussions in the classroom, and social studies and civics education. She can be reached at

Teaching Climate Change

K.C. Busch is an assistant professor of STEM education at NC State. She can discuss climate change communication, the link between student worldview and acceptance of climate change, and climate change uncertainty in classroom textbooks. She can be reached at

Multilingual Learners

Maria Coady is Goodnight Distinguished Professor in Educational Equity at NC State. She can speak about how K-12 schools can better serve multilingual learners, or students learning English as a second language, and rural education. Coady can be reached at

Higher Education

Joy Gaston Gayles, Alumni Distinguished Graduate Professor of higher education and head of the department of educational leadership, policy and human development, can speak on postsecondary education issues. She can be reached at


DeLeon Gray can speak about strategies for K-12 schools to boost belonging for Black and Latino students in ways that foster increased motivation, well-being, scholastic achievement, and academic engagement. Gray is an associate professor of educational psychology and equity. He can be reached at

Teacher Preparation

Erin Horne is assistant dean for professional education and accreditation. She can speak about teacher shortages, retention and pay, as well as teacher preparation, accreditation, and licensure and education. She can be reached at

School Leadership

Lance Fusarelli is professor of educational leadership and policy and director of graduate programs for the NC State College of Education. He can discuss the politics of K-12 education, superintendents and school boards, school choice, school leadership and the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). He can be reached at

Private Schools 

Anna Egalite, associate professor of educational leadership, policy and human development at NC State and a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, can speak on private schools and North Carolina’s “Opportunity Scholarship” voucher program. Egalite co-authored a report analyzing the private school landscape in the early days after the program’s launch. Egalite can be reached at