Skip Navigation


Joyce Epstein: SOE Faculty 

Joyce L. Epstein PhD

(410) 516-8807
2701 N. Charles St.
Suite 300
Baltimore MD, 21218

Program Affiliations

Center for Social Organization of Schools; Director, Center on School, Family and Community Partnership and National Network of Partnership Schools (NNPS)


Joyce L. Epstein is director of both the Center on School, Family, and Community Partnerships and the National Network of Partnership Schools, and a research professor of education and sociology at Johns Hopkins University. Her research focuses on how leadership at the district and school levels affects the quality of a school’s programs on family and community involvement and on results for students. In all of her work, she is interested in the connections between research, policy and practice.

She has over 100 publications on family and community involvement. These include School, Family, and Community Partnerships: Your Handbook for Action, Third Edition (Corwin Press, 2009), which guides partnership program development, and School, Family, and Community Partnerships: Preparing Educators and Improving Schools, Second Edition (Westview Press, 2011), a textbook for college courses for future teachers and administrators. Two co-authored books for practitioners are Multicultural Partnerships: Involve All Families and Family Reading Night (Taylor and Francis, 2012 and 2015, respectively).

She was named a fellow of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) in 2009 and received the 2009 Elizabeth Cohen Award for Applied Research from AERA’s Sociology of Education Special Interest Group. In 1995, she established the National Network of Partnership Schools, which provides professional development that enables school, district and state leaders to establish, strengthen and sustain research-based programs on family and community involvement linked to student success in school. See


Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University, 1974, Sociology

Grants and Contracts Awarded

U.S. Department of Education, IES, Grant (Co-PI with Dr. M. Mac Iver and others): Continuous Improvement in Schools Equipping Families to Support Students in the Transition to High School. $2.4M over 4 years. 2015-2019.

MetLife Foundation Grant: Developing Programs of Family and Community Involvement, $1,025,000,  2008-2014

NICHD Interagency Grant: Family and Community Involvement: Achievement Effects, $6M, 2003-2009

U.S. Department of Defense, $853,000, Military Child Initiative (with JHU School of Public Health), 2005-2007

U. S. Department of Education, IES, for Program 3 in CRESPAR, over $2.3M for 5 years, 1999-2004.

Recent Publications and Presentations


Hutchins, D. J., Greenfeld, M. G., & Epstein, J. L. (2015).  Family Reading Night.  New York: Taylor and Francis.

Epstein, J. L., Sanders, M. G., Sheldon, S. B., et al. (2009).  School, Family, and Community Partnership: Your Handbook for Action, Third Edition and Handbook CD.  Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Epstein, J. L. (2011).  School, Family, and Community Partnerships:  Preparing Educators and Improving Schools (Second Edition). Boulder, CO: Westview Press.

Hutchins, D. J., Greenfeld, M. G., & Epstein, J. L., Sanders, M. G., & Galindo, C. (2012).   Multicultural Partnerships: Involve All Families.  New York: Taylor and Francis.

Articles and Chapters

Van Voorhis, F. L., Maier, M., Epstein, J. L., & Lloyd, C. M., (2013. The impact of family involvement on the education of children ages 3 to 8: A focus on literacy and math achievement outcomes and social-emotional skills.  New York: MDRC.

Núñez, J. C., Suarez, N., Rosario, P., Vallejo, G., & Epstein, J. L., (2015). Relationships between parental involvement in homework, student homework behaviors, and academic achievement: Differences among elementary, junior high, and high school students. Metacognition & Learning, doi: 10.1007/s11409-015-9135-5

Epstein, J. L. (In Press). Searching for equity in education: Finding school, family, and community partnerships. In A. R. Sadovnik (ed.), Leaders in the Sociological Study of Education.  Sense Publishers.

Epstein, J. L., & Sheldon, S. B. (2006).   Moving forward:  Ideas for research on school, family, and community partnerships. Pp. 117-137 in C. Conrad and R. Serlin (Eds.).  SAGE Handbook for Research in Education: Engaging Ideas and Enriching Inquiry. Thousand Oaks, CA:  Sage Publications.  

Epstein, J. L., Galindo, C., & Sheldon, S. B. (2011). Levels of leadership: Effects of district and school leaders on the quality of school programs of family and community involvement.   Educational Administration Quarterly, 47, 462-495.

Epstein, J. L., &. Van Voorhis, F. L.  (2012).   The changing debate: From assigning homework to designing homework.  Pp. 263-273 in E. Reese and S. Suggate (eds.) Contemporary Debates in Childhood Education.  London: Routledge.


New York CUNY/CCNY.  Bortner Lecture: New Directions for Developing Programs of Family and Community Involvement for Student Success: Advances in Theory, Research, and Practical Applications.  March 2013.

Dublin, Ireland.  Nat’l Parents Council (NPC) Great Expectations Conference.  Keynote. June 2013. 

Santiago, Chile.  Keynote:  How to Improve Programs of School, Family, and Community Partnerships for Student Success.  Conference: Cómo involucrar a la familia para lograr el éxito de nuestros estudiantes. Aprender en Familia / Fundación CAP.  October 2013.