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Ed. Magazine

HEP’s Leap of Faith

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What’s younger than Google (by three years), younger than Netflix (by four years), but older than Tesla (by one year)? What publishing house seems like it has been around forever, but in human years, has only recently been allowed to vote? 

The answer might just be the best part of your day: Harvard Education Press (HEP). Only 20, you say? How can that be? When our founders took that Kierkegaardian “leap of faith,” they had a dream and a vision that this tiny, nimble publishing house would someday be at the forefront of education publishing. The founders were not wrong. 

Over the past two decades, HEP has published innovative and authoritative books covering critical issues in education. These titles influence and inform education practice and administration, explore ongoing policy debates, and report on important research in the field. In the fall of 2002, HEP published its first book: Racial Inequity in Special Education. Edited by Gary Orfield and Daniel Losen of Harvard’s Civil Rights Project, it set the stage for a national discussion about special education and racial justice. It was an auspicious beginning for an intrepid publishing house. 

Since then, the Press (as we call it) has grown dramatically in size, in the range of topics it covers, and in its influence. It now has extensive lists on education reform, school leadership, climate science, special education, youth development, innovation and entrepreneurship, STEM education, learning and teaching, race and equity, higher education, trauma/learning loss, education management and finance, and numerous other crucially important fields. The Press has published groundbreaking books for school leaders and teachers — including bestsellers such as The Behavior Code, Make Just One Change, Data Wise and Instructional Rounds in Education — and highly influential books on education policy.

Our books span the globe and have been translated into 21 languages, including Albanian, Arabic, Chinese (simplified or complex characters), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish (all regions), Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Vietnamese. Our list includes leading authors in the field, such as Anthony Bryk, Rich Milner, Jeffrey Henig, Karin Chenoweth, Larry Cuban, Ronald Ferguson, Linda Darling-Hammond, Rick Hess, Professor Paul Reville, Charles Payne, Nancy Hoffman, Professor Richard Murnane, Leslie Fenwick, and many others.

It has been an exciting and productive 20 years, and we’re still growing. The entire team is excited about the future and expanding the work and reach of the Press. And while it may seem trite to say, it’s true: Nothing is more vital and important than education. Harvard Education Press is focused and poised to be right there at the cutting edge, pushing the boundaries deep into the 21st century and beyond. 

Intrepid? Foolish? Starting a new press in 2002 in a saturated market? Are we all so darn proud that our founders took that “leap of faith?” We darn well are. 

—    Rose Ann Miller is the publicist for Harvard Education Press

Ed. Magazine

The magazine of the Harvard Graduate School of Education

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