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Luis A Huerta

Professional Background

Educational Background

* Ph.D. in Division of Policy, Organizations, Measurement, and Evaluation, University of California, Berkeley

Scholarly Interests

  • Education Policy
  • Decentralization in Education
  • School Choice (Charter schools, vouchers, home schooling, tuition tax credits)
  • Privatization in Education
  • School Finance

Selected Publications


Terrant, K. & Huerta, L. A. (2015). Substantive or symbolic stars: Quality rating and improvement systems through a new institutional lens. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 29(5), 327-328.

Huerta, L. A. (2009). Institutional vs. technical environments: Reconciling the goals of decentralization in an evolving charter school organization. Peabody Journal of Education, 84(2), 244-261.
Huerta, L. A. & Zuckerman, A. (2009). An institutional theory analysis of charter schools: Addressing challenges to scale. Peabody Journal of Education, 84(3), 414-431.
Bodine, E., Fuller, B., Gonzlez, M. F., Huerta, L. A., Naughton, S., Park, S., Teh, L. W. (2008). Disparities in charter school resources: The influence of state policy and community conditions. Journal of Education Policy, 23(1), 1-33.
Huerta, L. A. & d'Entremont, C. (2007). Education tax credits in a post-Zelman era: Legal, political and policy alternative to vouchers? Educational Policy, January/March 21(1), 73-109.
d'Entremont, C. & Huerta, L. A. (2007). Irreconcilable differences? Education vouchers and the suburban response. Educational Policy, January/March 21(1), 40-72.
Greene, G. K., Huerta, L. A. & Richards, C. E. (2007). Getting real: A different perspective on the relationship between school resources and student outcomes. Journal of Education Finance, 33(1), 49-68.
Huerta, L. A., Gonzlez, M. F. & d'Entremont, C. (2006). Cyber and home school charter schools: Adopting policy to new forms of public schooling. Peabody Journal of Education, 81(1), 103-139.
Huerta, L. A., d'Entremont, C &. Gonzlez, M. F. (2006). Cyber charter schools: Can accountability keep pace with innovation? Phi Delta Kappan, September, 23-30.
Huerta, L. A. (2006).Next steps for results: The improved school finance and the CFE v. State of New York case.  Journal of Education Finance, 31(4), 379-394.
Grubb, W. N., Huerta, L. A. & Goe, L. (2006).Straw into gold, revenues into results: Spinning out the implications of the improved school finance. Journal of Education Finance, 31(4), 334-359.
Grubb, W. N., Goe, L., & Huerta, L. A. (2004). The unending search for equity: California policy, the improved school finance, and the Williams case. Teachers College Record, 106(11),  2081-2101.
Book Chapters

Huerta, L. A., Fuller, B., Parker, L. & d'Entremont, C. (2011). Charter schools in New York's Black communities: Managing resources in local organizational fields. In D. Slaughter-Defoe, H. Stevenson, E. Arrington and D. Johnson (Eds.) Black Educational Choice: Assessing the Private and Public Alternatives to Traditional K-12 Public Schools. (pp. 173-190), Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger Publishers.

Huerta, L.A. & d'Entremont, C. (2010). Charter School Finance: Seeking Institutional Legitimacy In a Marketplace of Resources. In C. Lubienski & P. Weitzel (Eds.) The Charter School Experiment: Expectations, Evidence & Implications (pp. 121-146), Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press.

Huerta, L.A. (2010). Series of Reports on The Fiscal Impact of Tax-Credit Scholarships, in K. Welner, P.H., Hinchey, A. Molnar & D. Weitzman (Ed.), Think Tank Research Quality: Lessons for Policy Makers, the Media, and the Public (pp. 127-140), Charlotte, N.C.: Information Age Publishing.

Huerta, L. A., d'Entremont, C. & Gonzlez, M. F. (2009). Perspective on cyber and homeschool charters. In M. Berends, M. Springer, D. Ballou and H. Walberg (Eds.), Handbook of Research on School Choice (pp.533-550),National Center on School Choice, Vanderbilt University and Lawrence Erlbaum Associates (2009).

Huerta, L. A. & Hatch, T. (2009). School reform.In R. A. Shweder (Ed.) The Child: An Encyclopedic Companion (pgs. 863-865), Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Huerta, L. A. (2000). The loss of public accountability? A home schooling charter school in rural California. In B. Fuller (Ed.), Inside charter schools: The paradox of radical decentralization. (pp. 177-202), Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Wexler, E. & Huerta, L. A. (2000). An empowering spirit is not enough: A Latino charter school struggles over leadership. In B. Fuller (Ed.), Inside charter schools: The paradox of radical decentralization. (pp. 98-123), Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Finkelstein, N., Furry, W., & Huerta, L. A. (2000). School finance in California: Does history provide a sufficient policy standard? In E. Burr, G. C. Hayward, B. Fuller & M. W. Kirst (Eds.) Crucial issues in California education 2000: Are the reform pieces fitting together (pp.45-78). Berkeley, CA: Policy Analysis for California Education, University of California.


Huerta, L. A. (2014, December 10). High suspension rates at charters schools don't help students. In Room for Debate: A Running Commentary on the News, Keeping only the best behaved, Opinion-Editorial, The New York Times,

Huerta, L. A. (2013, April 21). Doubling Down on Testing Is a Failed Wager, In A Nation at Risk, 30 Years Later, Education Week, 

Huerta, L. A. (2011, January 4).Uniting fiscal and social conservatism. In Room for Debate: A Running Commentary on the News, Do Home Schoolers Deserve a Tax Break?, Opinion-Editorial, The New York Times.

Henig, J. & Huerta, L. A. (2010, March 14). The economic vise. In Room for Debate: A Running Commentary on the News, The Push-Back on Charter Schools, Opinion-Editorial, The New York Times.

Huerta, L. A. & Fuller, B. (2008, July 7). Scorekeeper for schools. New York Sun, Opinion-Editorial, p.B8.
Berliner, D., Farrel, W., Huerta, L. A., Mickelson, R. (2001, February 22). Vouchers: No solution to educating the poor. Arizona Republic, Opinion-Editorial, p. B9.
Huerta, L. A. (2000, October 19). Proposition 38 makes promises it cannot keep. San Francisco Chronicle, Opinion-Editorial, p. A3.
Fuller, B. & Huerta, L. A. (2000, July 20). State action deserves a lot of credit for better test scores. Los Angeles Times, Opinion-Editorial, p. B11.

ORLA 5012: The social context of education reform: Public engagement and community development

Political analysis of administration at the service delivery and community levels.

Centers and Projects

Center on Chinese Education

The Center on Chinese Education, Teachers College Columbia University (CoCE) is aimed at contributing to a better understanding of education in China and to educational exchange between the United States and China. It seeks to achieve this mission through three categories of activities: research and development, education and training, as well as outreach and exchange. These activities will draw upon the historically special relationship between Chinese education and Teachers College, the interests and expertise of the faculty at Teachers College, as well as expertise and resources outside of Teachers College. Major funding for the Center's activities is provided by the Henry Luce Foundation and the Ford Foundation.

Contact: Mun C. Tsang

Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media

The Hechinger Institute exists to equip journalists with the knowledge and skills they need to produce fair, accurate and insightful reporting. Since its launch in 1996, the institute has sponsored more than 63 seminars for journalists who write, editorialize or edit coverage of education.

More than 1,800 journalists have attended Hechinger Institute seminars, which feature top education experts, including faculty from Teachers College. Held at Teachers College and throughout the U.S., Hechinger seminars are designed to create an intimate, salon-like atmosphere in which all of the participants and presenters are encouraged to participate.

The institute also produces primers and publications on timely topics in education, from covering higher education to understanding teachers unions. The institute maintains a website with resources related to seminar topics along with a blog on early childhood issues. In 2007, the institute is sponsoring "Covering America, Covering Community Colleges" a fellowship designed to encourage and promote in-depth coverage of community colleges for print and broadcast reporters, online and editorial writers.
The Hechinger Institute's director is Richard Lee Colvin, the former lead education writer for the Los Angeles Times who spent much of his career writing about education for newspapers in California. The assistant director is Liz Willen, a former education writer for Newsday and Bloomberg News.

The institute is supported by a variety of private philanthropies, including the John S. and James Knight Foundation, the Broad Foundation, the Pew Charitable Trusts, the Joyce Foundation, The Ford Foundation, The Wallace Foundation, Harold W. McGraw Jr., chairman emeritus of the McGraw-Hill Companies, the Cotsen Family Foundation, the Lumina Foundation for Education and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It is named in memory of Fred M. Hechinger, a former education editor of the New York Times and a trustee of Teachers College.

National Center for the Study of Privatization in Education

The National Center for the Study of Privatization in Education (NCSPE) serves as a non-partisan venue to analyze and disseminate information about the contentious private initiatives in education that include vouchers, charter schools and educational contracting. Proponents of privatization view the movement as improving school choice, student outcomes and innovation through competition in the marketplace. They point to the poor performance of urban schools and how competition converts failure into success. Opponents argue that the movement undermines already flagging urban public schools, depriving the system of motivated students and scarce resources to bring about reform and runs counter to the establishment clause embodied in the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. Currently there is no disinterested authority to test and verify the conflicting claims of proponents and opponents, leaving the debate to those who argue on ideological grounds rather than empirical data. In evaluating different privatization plans, the center uses four criteria: the freedom for parents to choose schools that mirror their values and religious beliefs; productive efficiency that maximizes school results; equity that provides access for all to the range of educational opportunities, and social cohesion that prepares youngsters for democratic and civic participation.

The Privatization Center is affiliated with the Department of International and Transcultural Studies. Its Director is Henry M. Levin, William Heard Kilpatrick Professor of Economics and Education. The Center disseminates its research, policy analysis through conferences, the World Wide Web, publications and the media. It also has entered a partnership with the education commission of the states to provide information to governors, state legislatures and state departments of education.

Contact: Henry Levin

Luis A Huerta appeared in the following articles:

2013 Year in Review: Research (1/13/2014)

TC President, 11 Faculty Make 2014 EduScholar Public Influence Rankings (1/9/2014)

Luis Huerta: K12, Inc. Running Newark Charter From "Soup to Nuts" (9/27/2013)

New OpEducation blog! (5/24/2013)

TC's Luis Huerta: Doubling Down on Testing is a Failed Wager (4/23/2013)

President Fuhrman, Six Faculty Members Make Rick Hess's 2012 Public Presence Rankings (1/9/2013)

Seven TC Scholars Make 2013 Edu-Scholar Public Presence Rankings (1/9/2013)

Luis Huerta on Charters: "Let's Not Confuse More With Better" (11/22/2012)

Luis Huerta Comments on Increased Attention on Virtual Schools (3/19/2012)

Luis Huerta Named an Editor of AERA Journal (1/19/2012)

Luis Huerta: "No Excuses" Discipline Assumes "Parents Have Lost Faith in Value of Education" (10/13/2011)

Luis Huerta Says Homeschooling has Grown 30 Percent in 10 Years (9/13/2011)

Luis Huerta Discusses Rising Homeschooling With Arizona Republic (8/9/2011)

Huerta comments on KIPP Dropout Study (3/28/2011)

The Best Policy (2/7/2011)


The Best Policy (1/13/2011)

Huerta: Home School Tax Breaks May Unite Conservatives (1/5/2011)

TC's Luis Huerta Says Charter Schools Should Share More (12/12/2010)

Upper Manhattan Principals Meet with U.S. Education Official (9/10/2010)

Luis Huerta Weighs in on Charters and Religion (6/22/2010)

Huerta Cited in NY Times Story on Charters (6/8/2010)

Engaged in the Pursuit of Equity (5/20/2010)

Outsourcing the District Office (4/1/2010)

The Backlash against Charter Schools (3/15/2010)

Huerta in Wall Street Journal Story About Home Schooling (9/22/2009)

Educational Equity at the Village Level (8/6/2009)

Educational Equity at the Village Level (4/28/2009)

TC at AERA (4/21/2009)

More city kids are schooled at home (1/23/2009)

November Calender of events (11/1/2008)

Los Angeles Sets School-Rescue Program (9/2/2008)

Do NYC's Test Scores Really Show Progress? (7/8/2008)

Virtual schools see strong growth, calls for more oversight (6/3/2008)

Virtual schools see strong growth, calls for more oversight (6/3/2008)

Virtual schools see strong growth, calls for more oversight (5/14/2008)

California Parents Eager for Ruling on Home Schooling (4/20/2008)

Luis Huerta Discusses Regulation of Home Schooling in California (3/7/2008)

Pursuing equal educational opportunity in a post-Brown world (11/26/2007)

Getting Better All the Time (10/18/2007)

UC's Online Charter High School Closes After One Year (7/31/2007)

Lawrence vote becomes bitter struggle between camps (5/12/2007)

New Policy Internships (4/26/2007)

Now Available: Education Policy Internships (2/23/2007)

Open Enrollment Decision (12/4/2006)

Home Schoolers Content to Take Children's Lead (11/26/2006)

Home-Schooled Manhattanites Get Help From $50,000 Tutors, DVDs (11/17/2006)

Orienting to History (10/27/2006)

Little Applause for Idea of Privatizing Control Over Some City Public Schools (10/6/2006)

New Student Orientation, Constitution Day and Comprehensive Educational Equity (9/27/2006 2:34:00 PM)

TC: America's Policy Mecca (9/18/2006 1:27:00 PM)

Is Home Schooling a Challenge to Public Schools? (8/31/2006)

The Gilded Age of Home Schooling (6/6/2006)

The Vanishing Class (2/9/2006)

It's Not Just Academic (10/11/2005)

A Campaign for Equity: Across the State (5/27/2005)

TC'S Huerta Discusses NYC School Funding Case (1/18/2005 11:50:43 AM)

TC's Huerta Discusses NYC School Funding Case (1/5/2005)

Big Earnings for Online Charter Schools (1/4/2005)

Money at the Root of Charter School Closings (7/4/2004)

Scores May Determine School's Fate (3/10/2004)

Vouchers: Making Public Schools Shape Up? (9/3/2003)

Vouchers: Making Public Schools Shape Up? (8/20/2003)

TC Expert Source Guide (1/1/1900)