Dr. Joseph R. Harris, managing researcher at the American Institutes for Research (AIR), is the Director of the College and Career Readiness and Success Center. Dr. Harris has an extensive background in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) reform as both a practitioner and researcher/evaluator, and more than two decades of experience as an administrator and high school teacher in an urban public school environment. Previously, he served as the Director of the National High School Center, a national research and technical assistance center funded by the U.S. Department of Education to help regions and states address both regular and special education high school issues related to implementing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act provisions.
For the previous 12 years, Dr. Harris served as the Project Manager for a major technical assistance contract, funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in support of the Systemic Initiatives, a multi-year NSF effort designed to promote improved mathematics, science, and technology education in 100+ state, rural, and urban school districts and regional consortia. Dr. Harris also has lead several K-12 projects, ranging from the Math Science Program Evaluation Advisory Board to a differentiated compensation project for Springfield (MA) public schools. Dr. Harris has served as project leader on numerous consulting projects in areas such as program evaluation, student assessment, strategic planning, education policy, program equity, minority student achievement, and public/private partnerships that have focused on improved program operations and outcomes.
Prior to joining The McKenzie Group and AIR, Dr. Harris served as an administrator and teacher in the District of Columbia Public Schools. For more than a decade, he coordinated the development, implementation, and operation of an automated instructional management system and played a major role in the development and implementation of the district's five-year computer literacy plan. Dr. Harris holds a Ph.D. in Education Policy from the University of Maryland, College Park, an M.A. in Secondary Education from the Catholic University of America, and a B.A. in Mathematical Statistics from the University of Florida.