Theresa Perry



  • B.A., Loyola University
  • M.A., Marquette University
  • Ed.D., Harvard University

About Me

Theresa Perry is a Professor in the departments of Africana Studies and Education at Simmons University and Director of the Simmons University/Beacon Press, Education and Democracy Lecture and Book Series. Her current writings and work are focused on the development of a theory of practice for African American achievement and an analysis of educational environments that normalize high achievement for students for African American students. She is the lead expert witness for the plaintiffs in the Blunt v. Lower Merion School District Case.

Dr. Perry has consulted with school districts (urban and suburban) and schools (public and private) on the development of policies and practices that support academic achievement among African American students. She is a member of the advisory committee for the Chicago/Woodlawn Children’s Promise Zone, a member of the advisory committee for the Boston Public Schools’ Achievement Gap Initiative, and a member of the Boston School Committee’s English Language Learners Task Force. Dr. Perry conceptualized and is one of the coordinator of Boston’s citywide Race, Culture, Identity and Achievement Seminar Series, which began in September 2004.

Dr. Perry is co-author, with the late Asa Hilliard III and Claude Steele of Young Gifted and Black: Promoting High Achievement Among African American Students, co-editor with Lisa Delpit of The Real Ebonics Debate: Power Language and the Education of African American Students, editor of Teaching Malcolm X, and co-editor of Freedom’s Plow: Teaching in the Multicultural Classroom. She is the co-editor with Bob Moses et al. of Quality Education as a Constitutional Right: Organizing to Create a Grassroots Movement, Beacon Press.

Before joining the Simmons University faculty, Dr. Perry was Dean of the Undergraduate Division, Dean of the faculty and Vice President for Community Relations at Wheelock College. As chief academic officer of the Undergraduate Division, she was responsible for the undergraduate academic program. While she was dean, the College was one of seven colleges selected by NCREST as having an exemplary teacher preparation program. Dr. Perry led the faculty in the integration of content about race, class and ethnicity throughout the curriculum, increased the representation of faculty of color to 25%, and developed robust partnerships with Boston Public Schools.