Photo: Tom Kates
Professor Thomas Kane was named today by the Yidan Prize Foundation, a global philanthropic education foundation, as a member of the Council of Luminaries — a new collective effort to address the biggest questions in education. Kane is an economist whose work has spanned both K-12 and higher education and covered topics such as school accountability, teacher recruitment and retention, college financial aid, race-conscious college admissions, and the earnings impacts of community colleges.
The newly formed Council of Luminaries aims to be a transformational force and support closer collaboration among the world’s most distinguished educational leaders, to amplify their collective voice and take practical action in educational policy and reform.
“Leaders in every country are trying to improve their education systems. It’s ironic, then, that there are few international efforts to compare notes and work collectively,” said Kane. “The Council of Luminaries should provide one such venue.”
Kane is one of 16 leading researchers, educators, neuroscientists, psychologists, economists, statisticians, and innovators who were invited to join the council, including Stanford University Professor Carol Dweck, Northwestern University Department of Statistics Chairman Larry Hedges, EdX CEO and Founder and MIT Professor Anant Agarwal, Teach for All CEO and Founder Wendy Kopp, and Khan Academy and CEO Founder Sal Khan. Council members will share and address key issues within a range of educational practices, and to bridge the gap between research and practice.
“As a firm believer in the power of education, the Yidan Prize Foundation believes the world needs an open and people-driven platform which brings together the brightest minds in education to inspire progress and change in education for a better world…The Council of Luminaries are coming together to create a more equitable and inclusive global community,” said Dr. Charles Chen Yidan, founder of the Yidan Prize in a press release. “All our luminaries are passionate educators who are highly accomplished and dedicated. The luminaries’ work has already brought about hugely positive changes to communities all around the world. They have made transformations possible in innovative, sustainable ways.”
Kane joined the HGSE faculty in 2005. He founded and leads the Center for Education Policy and Research, a university-wide research center that works with school districts and state agencies. Prior to joining HGSE, Kane served as the senior economist for labor, education, and welfare policy issues within President Clinton's Council of Economic Advisers and was a faculty member at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and at UCLA.