Our Leadership

Headshot of LaGarrett King.

Center Director LaGarrett J. King, PhD

LaGarrett J. King, PhD joined the University at Buffalo’s Graduate School of Education in January 2022 as an associate professor of social studies education. He was previously the Isabella Wade Lyda and Paul Lyda Professor of Education at the University of Missouri. He received his PhD from the University of Texas at Austin after an eight-year teaching career in Georgia and Texas. His primary research interest examines the teaching and learning of Black history in schools and society. He also researches critical theories of race, teacher education and curriculum history.

King is an internationally recognized award-winning scholar of Black history education. He received two early career scholar awards for the Critical Issues in Curriculum and Cultural studies special interest group of the American Educational Research Association and the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies. He was also awarded one of the prestigious Emerging Scholar of the African Diaspora Award the Comparative and International Education Society Special interest group. He has over 60 scholarly articles and book chapters published in such scholarly journals such as Theory and Research in Social Education, Race, Ethnicity, and Education, Journal of Negro Education, Teaching Education and The International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education.

He has published four edited books:

  1. Perspectives on the Teaching of Black History in Schools
  2. Hollywood or History?: An inquiry based strategy for using film to teach African American History
  3. We Be Lovin’ Black Children
  4. Social Studies Education and Racial Literacy

King is in the process of writing three new books including his most recent work co-authored with Drs. Charla Bohan and Robert Baker, Teaching Enslavement inAmerican History, which is scheduled for publication release February 2022.

In 2018, King founded and directed the Carter Center for K-12 Black History Education at the University of Missouri.  King leveraged his expertise and experience building the Carter Center to develop the Center for K-12 Black History and Racial Literacy Education at the Graduate School of Education at the University at Buffalo. The center focuses on research projects and teacher professional development activities that seek to improve K-12 Black history education. The center engages in services and teaching related to its research mission while also helping to build networks of people and organizations committed to Black history education. The centers signature program is the Teaching Black History Conference. The annual conference, now in its fifth year, brings together educators who seek transformative and engaging ways to teach K-12 Black history in both history and humanities courses. Teachers gain tangible strategies to incorporate in their classrooms that focus on content and pedagogy, active learning, support and collaboration, and instructional approaches.