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Eric Houck, Ph.D. - UNC-Chapel Hill. Chapel Hill, NC, US

Eric Houck, Ph.D. Eric Houck, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy, School of Education | UNC-Chapel Hill


Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy



Eric Houck, Ph.D. Publication



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A noted authority on education finance issues, Eric Houck’s current research focuses on the mechanisms by which teachers and students are allocated across schools and districts, particularly via salary structures and student assignment policies. He is a coauthor of one of the leading school finance textbooks on the market and his research has appeared in publications such as the Journal of Education Finance, the Peabody Journal of Education, Education and Urban Society, and Leadership and Policy in Schools.

A former public school teacher, Houck was a member of UNC's inaugural class of NC Teaching Fellows.

Industry Expertise (6)



Financial Services

Program Development

Public Policy


Areas of Expertise (5)

Teacher Salary

Teacher Quality

Student Assignment Issues

School Finance Policies

State Funding Formulas

Accomplishments (2)

Fellow, National Center for Education Statistics Cooperative Systems Program, (professional)


Fellow, National Center for Education Statistics Cooperative Systems Program, Washington, DC

Distinguished Research and Practice Fellow (professional)


2012 Distinguished Research and Practice Fellow, National Education Finance Conference

Education (3)

Vanderbilt University: Ph.D., Educational Leadership and Policy 2006

University of Wisconsin-Madison: M.A., Educational Policy Studies 1999

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: B.A., English Education 1992

Affiliations (3)

  • American Education Finance Association
  • University Council for Educational Administration
  • American Educational Researchers' Association

Media Appearances (1)

Q&A With Prof. Eric Houck: How could college funding change?

The Daily Tar Heel  online


Eric Houck is an associate professor in educational leadership and policy at UNC. His research specializes in education funding with a focus on K-12 education. He previously served as an English teacher in Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools and served on the state of Georgia’s grant-writing committee for the Race to the Top program. View from the Hill spoke with him about President Barack Obama’s plan to lower higher education costs.

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Event Appearances (5)

Rethinking the Market Metaphor: School Choice, the Common Good, and the National Football League

National Conference on School Choice  Ft. Lauderdale, FL.


Everything old is new again: Changing intergovernmental accountability relationships in an era of standards-based education reform

Annual Meeting of the American Education Research Association  San Francisco, CA.


Money and sex in education: The intersection of scholarship in school finance and gender

Annual Meeting of the American Education Research Association  San Francisco, CA.


Financing schools through tough economic times

National Education Finance Conference  San Antonio, TX.


We promised to do what? Examining teacher compensation policies of Race to the Top winners

National Education Finance Conference  Tampa, FL.


Articles (5)

The Shift from Adequacy to Equity in Federal Education Policymaking: A Proposal for How ESEA Could Reshape the State Role in Education Finance

The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences

2015 ESEA's original intent was to provide educational assistance to less privileged students. However, ESEA's supplemental funding for students and teachers has often been inadequate in addressing pervasive and systematic disparities in fiscal resources. These disparities exist between states, within states, and within school districts. In the spirit of the original legislation, this article proposes addressing educational fiscal inequities via a new program within ESEA that would reward states for reforming their education finance ...

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Understanding School Finance Laws and Practices

The SAGE Guide to Leadership and Management


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History and scholarship regarding US education finance and policy

Handbook of Research in Education Finance and Policy

2014 America's first generation of education funding systems provided land to stimulate popular provision of schooling. Today, state funding mechanisms have evolved into a complex array of policy levers ranging from pupil weighting schemes and interlocking systems of property, income, and sales taxation to provisions for vouchers, tax credits, and home school certificates. Scholars and policymakers routinely deal with issues ranging from how to promote more equitable distribution of education resources within states to the ...

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The life and death of desegregation policy in Wake County public school system and Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools

Education and Urban Society

2013 The state of North Carolina is one of few states in the South in which two large districts committed to desegregating schools in the early 1970s. However, the state's two largest districts, Charlotte-Mecklenberg Schools (CMS) and Wake County Public School System (WCPSS) have experienced ups and downs in their policy commitment to desegregated schools. This article utilizes a cross-case policy analysis to examine levels of segregation in CMS and WCPSS over a 10-year period. In addition, the authors examine ...

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New data, old patterns: the role of test scores in student assignment

The Infrastructure of Accountability


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