Cheryl Fields-Smith


Prior to earning her doctorate from Emory University in 2004, Dr. Fields-Smith served as an elementary school teacher in Bridgeport, Stamford, and Norwalk, Connecticut. During her tenure as a teacher she taught in two magnet schools, both of which employed the Bank Street Model, which emphasizes child-centered, hands-on, experiential learning through thematic, social studies-based integrated instruction.


  • Family engagement
  • Homeschooling among black families
  • Discipline disproportionality and teacher education


  •  PhD in Urban Education, 2004
    Emory University
  •  Masters in Elementary Education, 1991
    University of Bridgeport
  •  BA in Economics, 1985
    Hampton Univeristy



 706-542-8005 (office)

Research Summary

Dr. Fields-Smith’s research interests include family engagement and homeschooling among Black families. Her dissertation explored family engagement from the perspective of 22 Black middle class families. Later, she received a Spencer Foundation Grant to conduct a two-year study focused on homeschooling among 46 Black families. From this study Dr. Fields-Smith has published several journal articles and chapters, which among them include the first empirically-based publication to focus exclusively on Black homeschool families. Her research on homeschooling among Black families has most recently been featured in a PBS NewsHour report and the Atlantic.

Awards and Accolades

Carl Glickman Faculty Fellow Award

UGA - College of Education, 2014