Sarah Dryden-Peterson leads a research program that focuses on the connections between education and community development, specifically the role that education plays in building peaceful and participatory societies. Her work is situated in conflict and post-conflict settings in sub-Saharan Africa and with African Diaspora communities in the United States and Canada. She is concerned with the interplay between local experiences of children, families, and teachers and the development and implementation of national and international policy. Her research reflects connections between practice, policy, and scholarship and is strengthened through long-term collaborations with UN agencies, NGOs, and communities. Dryden-Peterson is on the faculty of the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a non-resident fellow at the Center for Universal Education at Brookings. She previously taught middle school in Boston and founded non-profits in Uganda and South Africa.
Refugee children arrive in the US with sporadic schooling, language confusion, poor instruction, and school-based discrimination.