Elena Aydarova

Assistant Professor

School of Education | Department of Educational Policy Studies

Hometown: Odesa, Ukraine

Elena Aydarova is an Assistant Professor in the Educational Policy Studies Department at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Her scholarship focuses on the interactions between educational policy, policy advocacy, and social inequality. Drawing on critical, feminist, and decolonial theories, her research interrogates policy formation through the lens of theater and performance. Her ongoing projects analyze the involvement of conservative groups in educational policy formation and implementation.

Dr. Aydarova’s talk can also be offered in Russian.


“Science of Reading” and the Educational Reform Movement: Actors, Networks, and Agendas

A wave of early reading reforms has swept across the US under the banner of the science of reading (SOR). Some perceive these reforms as a result of advocacy conducted by grassroots organizations. Although various grassroots movements have indeed contributed to policy changes, their voices were not the only ones shaping ongoing reform efforts. Drawing on the findings of a comparative case study, this talk will consider the ties between organizations influential in SOR decision-making and the private sector, venture philanthropy, and conservative educational reform movement. Approaching advocacy through the lens of performance affords an opportunity to interrogate the roles different advocates play and agendas they pursue through their advocacy efforts.

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