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Dr. Ishimaru’s scholarship focuses on the intersection of leadership, school-community relationships, and equity-based reform in urban and “new immigrant destination” school systems. Her work examines leadership capacity for system-wide equity, in the context of both district-community organizing collaborations and educational leader professional growth.
One strand of this work focuses on the role of districts and community-based organizations in developing the leadership and capacity of low-income, immigrant and other non-dominant parents and community members to collaborate with educators to promote systemic change and student success. The other primary strand of my work examines how school leadership teams, nested within district equity initiatives, engage with data and tools to catalyze organizational learning and equitable leadership practice.
EdD, Harvard Graduate School of Education
EdM, Education Policy Management, Harvard Graduate School of Education
MA, Curriculum and Teacher Education, Stanford University School of Education
Honors & Awards
Social Justice Dissertation Award, American Educational Research Association (2013)
Special Interest Group: Leadership for Social Justice
Outstanding Dissertation Award, American Educational Research Association (2013)
Special Interest Group: Family-School-Community Partnerships
Outstanding Graduate Student Paper Award, American Educational Research (2011)
Association Grassroots Community & Youth Organizing SIG
Spencer Dissertation Fellowship for Research Related to Education (2010)
Ruth Landes Memorial Research Fellowship (2010)
Ronald R. Edmonds-Charles M. Cheng Memorial Fund Fellowship (2009)
State Farm Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Award (2009)
Ishimaru, A. M. (2014). When new relationships meet old narratives: The journey towards improving parent-school relations in a district-community organizing collaboration. Teachers College Record, 116(2).
Ishimaru, A. (2013). From heroes to organizers: Principals and education organizing in urban school reform. Educational Administration Quarterly. 49(1): 3-51.
Ishimaru, A., Gordon, C., & Cervantes, R. (2011). A match on dry grass: Education organizing in Alum Rock," In M. Warren, K. Mapp and The Community Organizing and School Reform Project. Match on dry grass: Community organizing for school reform. New York: Oxford University Press.
Warren, M., Mapp, K. and The Community Organizing and School Reform Project (2011). Match on dry grass: Community organizing for school reform. New York: Oxford University Press.
Higgins, M., Ishimaru, A., Holcombe, R., Fowler, A. (2011). Examining the building blocks of learning in schools. Journal of Educational Change.
Childress, S., Higgins, M., Ishimaru, A. & Takahashi, S. (2011). Accountability and organizational learning in New York City reforms. In J. O’Day, C. Bitter & L.
Gomez (Eds.) Education Reform in New York City: Ambitious Change in the Nation's Most Complex School System. Cambridge: Harvard Education Press.
EDLPS 511 School-Community Relations
EDLPS 565 Introduction to Leadership
EDLPS 570 Leadership for Equity
EDLPS 547 & 548 (L4L only) Inquiry-based Leadership
EDLPS 549 Introduction to Quant Methods