Heather L. Schwartz

Heather L. Schwartz
Director, Pre-K to 12 Educational Systems Program; Senior Policy Researcher; Co-Director of American School District Panel
Off Site Office


Ph.D. in education policy, Columbia University; B.A. in English, Swarthmore College


Heather Schwartz is the director of the Pre-K to 12 educational systems program and a senior policy researcher at the RAND Corporation. She also co-directs the American School District Panel. She researches education and housing policies intended to reduce the negative effects of poverty on children and families. She leads mixed-method studies with experimental and non-experimental designs, and her methodological skills include survey design, qualitative data collection methods, and benefit-cost analyses. Schwartz earned her Ph.D. in education policy from Columbia University.

Recent Projects

  • Social and Emotional Learning Evaluation
  • Chicago Regional Housing Choice Initiative Experiment
  • School Safety and Technology

Selected Publications

Schwartz, Heather L., Melissa Kay Diliberti, Flux in the Educator Labor Market: Acute Staff Shortages and Projected Superintendent Departures: Selected Findings from the Fourth American School District Panel Survey, RAND Corporation (RR-A956-9), 2022

Master, B. K., Schwartz, H., Unlu, F., Schweig, J., Mariano, L. T., Coe, J., Wang, E. L., Phillips, B., & Berglund, T, "Developing School Leaders: Findings From a Randomized Control Trial Study of the Executive Development Program and Paired Coaching," Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 2021

Augustine, Catherine H., Jennifer Sloan McCombs, Heather L. Schwartz, and Laura Zakaras, Getting to Work on Summer Learning: Recommended Practices for Success, 1st Ed., RAND Corporation (RR-366), 2013

"Housing policy is school policy: Economically integrative housing promotes academic success in Montgomery County, Maryland," in Richard D. Kahlenberg, The Future of School Integration, Century Foundation, 2012

Heather Schwartz, Kata Mihaly, Breann Gala, "Encouraging residential moves to opportunity neighborhoods: An experiment testing incentives offered to housing voucher recipients," Housing Policy Debate, 2017

Randall Reback, Jonah Rockoff, Heather Schwartz, "Under Pressure: Job Security, Resource Allocation, and Productivity in Schools Under No Child Left Behind," American Economic Journal, 6(3), 2014

Heather Schwartz, Susan Burkhauser, Beth Ann Griffin, David Kennedy, Hank Green, Alene Kennedy-Hendricks, Craig Pollack, "Do the Joneses Help You Keep Up? A Natural Experiment in Exposure to Non-Poor Neighbors," Housing Policy Debate, 2015

Honors & Awards

  • Phi Beta Kappa, Swarthmore College
  • Mellon Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellow, Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy, Columbia University
  • Spencer Foundation Dissertation Fellow, Spencer Foundation