My name is Kathryn P. Chapman and I am currently a postdoctoral scholar with the Department of Educational Leadership Studies, within the College of Education at the University of Kentucky. I completed my Ph.D. in Educational Policy & Evaluation from the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University in June 2019. I am a scholar who focuses on the intersection of leadership, policy, and financial investments to address inequities across early childhood systems. A central focus of my research is on how philanthropists shape early childhood education policy and practice. This includes research focused on individual philanthropic foundations, the partnerships, networks, and pooled funds they create with other foundations and businesses, and the influence they have on state and federal early childhood education policy.
Originally from Wisconsin, I graduated from Arizona State University in 2005 with a B.A.E. in Early Childhood Education. I began my career in education as a kindergarten and English as a Second Language teacher in northern Virginia. After teaching in Virginia, working for the Obama for America campaign across the United States, teaching kindergarten in Wisconsin, and working at the U.S. Department of Education, I obtained a Master of Curriculum & Instruction degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. I returned to teach kindergarten in Arizona once more before beginning my Ph.D. program.
I am fluent in the practices, policies, and research of early childhood education. My teaching and federal government experiences, in combination with my doctoral studies and my current role as a postdoctoral scholar, position me to produce relevant research and translate research for policymakers, educational leaders, and educators.
I conducted a comparative case study examining three U.S. philanthropic foundations to understand how and why they have supported U.S. early childhood (i.e. birth through age-four) programs, policies, and research from 2005 through 2018, and what prompted their decisions to invest in early childhood initiatives alongside of K-12 education.
If you are interested in learning more about this study and the related network (featured in the picture), please click the button below.
I am currently working with colleagues on multiple research projects. These projects have broad connections to education policy, teacher quality and tenure, and the standardized assessment opt-out movement in the United States.
If you are interested in learning more about a few of these research projects, please click the button below.
I have nine total years of teaching experience, ranging from pre-kindergarten to university and including face-to-face and online delivery modes. At the university level, I taught, co-taught, or assisted in the teaching of multiple courses at both the University of Wisconsin - Madison and Arizona State University. Throughout these teaching experiences, I created or assisted in creating the course syllabi, designed activities, graded assignments, and held one-on-one conferences and office hours with students.
If you are interested in learning more about my teaching philosophy or evidence of my teaching effectiveness, please click the buttons below.