Public Release: 

Boston College's Andrew Hargreaves recipient of 2015 Grawemeyer Award in Education

Teaching expert and co-author Michael Fullan share $100,000 prize

Boston College

CHESTNUT HILL, MA (Dec. 4, 2014) - Boston College Professor of Teacher Education Andrew Hargreaves has been named a recipient of the 2015 Grawemeyer Award in Education from the University of Louisville for his research into the development of effective teachers.

Hargreaves, the Thomas More Brennan Professor in Education at BC's Lynch School of Education, will share the $100,000 prize with long-time collaborator Michael Fullan, professor emeritus at the University of Toronto, with whom he co-authored the award-winning book Professional Capital: Transforming Teaching in All Schools (Columbia Teachers College Press, 2012).

Hargreaves said he was honored to receive the Grawemeyer Award and humbled to join the ranks of prior recipients, including Linda Darling Hammond, Diane Ravitch and Howard Gardner.

"My guiding concern has always been why teachers do what they do," said Hargreaves. "For a long time, I looked at why changes, including worthwhile and well-intentioned ones, didn't seem to work; why they didn't get beyond the classroom door. Then I started to examine changes and systems that were more successful in terms of equity and excellence, to see how they could help explain what was required for educators to perform at their best."

Hargreaves has been studying the impact of change and reform upon teachers and schools for nearly 30 years in his native United Kingdom, as well as Finland, Singapore, Canada and the United States. In addition to his research, Hargreaves is one of Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne's education advisors.

Hargreaves' work bridges theory and practice, searching data for the keys to success and sharing those results with school leaders and teachers, as well as other education researchers.

"Dr. Hargreaves' scholarship affirms the Lynch School commitment to empowering teachers and school leaders with the knowledge and support to effect school change, while also making clear the social and economic resources that are vital for educators to effectively carry out their work," Lynch School Dean Maureen Kenny said.

In Professional Capital, Hargreaves and Fullan looked at the intersection of human, decisional and social capital at the classroom, system and regional levels.

"These three things add up to effective professional capital. High performing systems develop professional capital among the vast majority of teachers to move the whole profession forward," Hargreaves said.

Professional Capital won awards earlier this year from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and International Leadership Association.

"Hargreaves and Fullan explain how teachers can thrive when they are treated with dignity and given freedom to exercise professional judgment together," said Melissa Evans-Andris, director of the Grawemeyer Awards program. "They also show how undue emphasis on teacher accountability has subverted the profession by pitting teachers and schools against each other and stealing the joy of teaching."

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Created by the late University of Louisville alumnus and philanthropist Charles Grawemeyer in 1984, the program awards prizes in five areas - music, psychology, education, religion and ideas improving world order. Recipients are scheduled to speak in Louisville in April.

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