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Professor, Educational Policy and Organizational Leadership, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Thurston "Thad" Domina has spent more than 20 years documenting educational inequalities and looking for educational policies and strategies that help to create a more just, equitable, and inclusive society. Over the course of his career, he has studied early childhood education to undergraduate education and every level in between, using a range of analytic tools to understand how families influence children’s educational opportunities; the ways schools accommodate learners’ diverse needs; and the consequences of educational experiences for child development and the transition to adulthood. His work has been supported by the National Institutes of Child Health and Development, the National Science Foundation, and the Spencer and W.T. Grant Foundations, among others.

A sociologist by training, Thad Domina works with educational practitioners to better understand the relationship between education and social inequality in the contemporary U.S. His work focuses in two areas: First, Domina seeks to understand how schools sort students into different learning environments, how this sorting process shapes students’ life chances, and how educational policies and educator practices can expand opportunities for all. Second, he studies the interaction between families and schools in an attempt to understand processes through which out-of-school factors influence the distribution of educational opportunity.


  • –present
    Program Coordinator, Policy, Leadership, and School Improvement Adjunct Associate Professor, UNC Department of Public Policy, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill