College of Education > Faculty and Staff Directory > Dr. Matthew Gardner Kelly

Dr. Matthew Gardner Kelly

Dr. Matthew Gardner Kelly
Phone: 814-863-3773
Office Address:
204F Rackley Building
University Park, PA 16802
Campus: University Park


Assistant Professor of Education


Education Policy Studies


Educational Leadership


Matthew Gardner Kelly is an Assistant Professor of Education. He is the former Yu-Ly Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellow at Stanford University, where he earned his MA (history) and PhD (educational policy/history of education). An interdisciplinary scholar of education and inequality, he researches the history and politics of school finance and governance; the patterns, causes, and consequences of uneven resource distribution in American public schools; and the interplay between geography, school funding, and educational opportunity.

Following Michael Katz’s assertion that “significant problems do not respect disciplinary boundaries,” his research integrates techniques from history, geography, and quantitative policy analysis. He was the principal investigator of “Unequal by Design” at the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis at Stanford University from 2017-2018. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Teachers College Record, Paedagogica HistoricaJournal of Educational Administration and History, and History of Education Quarterly. His article on the development of educational governance in California was awarded the 2018 History of Education Society Prize for the best refereed journal article on educational history published in the previous two years.

Before entering academia, Dr. Kelly was a math teacher and instructional leader in the Ocean Hill - Brownsville and Harlem neighborhoods of New York City.

Courses Taught

EDLDR 573: Public School Finance