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Cheryl Matias, Paul Gorski, and the independent publisher, W. W. Norton are partnering to develop a book series focusing on bridging educational equity and social justice theory to equity and social justice education practice. See the series description proposal guidelines. If you have any questions, please contact Cheryl at or Paul at


Equity and Justice in Education:

Bridging Theory to Practice


Cheryl E. Matias & Paul C. Gorski, Series Editors

Access a PDF version of this CALL FOR PROPOSALS 

The Norton Series on EQUITY AND SOCIAL JUSTICE IN EDUCATION is a publishing home for books that translate critical and transformative equity and social justice theories to on-the-ground educational practices. The series’ concept is built around a set of questions that we invite potential authors to address. Particularly, we are interested in authors who apply critical equity and justice lenses to reveal unfair distributions of educational opportunities and experiences for students who are historically and presently marginalized, such as Students of Color, students with varying abilities, students experiencing poverty, LGBTQIA students, and multilingual learners. These inequities may be related to any number of entrenched problems including but not limited to racism, white supremacy, neoliberalism, economic injustice, sexism, heterosexism, consumerism, transphobia, and ableism.


The questions we hope to answer in this series include:


  • What do critical theories—critical race theory, queer theory, critical whiteness studies, critical disability theory, and LatCrit theory, for example—look like in everyday teaching and educational leadership practices?

  • What just practices directly respond to societal-level injustices, such as those listed above? How must educators and educational institutional respond?

  • In K-12 schools and school districts, what are the most equitable and just approaches being implemented today? What makes them most equitable and effective? What sorts of initiatives, educational policies, and teaching practices commonly pass for “equity and justice” but reproduce inequitable and unjust conditions?

  • What would popular educational interventions—social-emotional learning, trauma-informed practices, restorative justice, mindfulness, positive behavior interventions, and others—look like if they were formulated and implemented through a racial justice, queer justice, economic justice, and other-justice-oriented lens? What are the dangers of not conceiving and implementing these initiatives through an equity and justice lens?

  • What are the sorts of changes students and communities who historically have been marginalized and remain marginalized in schools desire and demand when it comes to cultivating equitable and just schools? What are the stories and knowledges of people from marginalized communities and how does affirming them provide the context for more just approaches?

  • What are key components, principles, values, policies, and practices that support sustained equity and justice change in classrooms, schools, and districts? What are specific examples of where those components, principles, values, policies, and practices are supporting this change?

  • What are the most prominent normative educational philosophies and how might they influence how we think about justice in education? What stifles true transformative, equitable, and just educational practice? Why? What can we do to challenge normative philosophies and stop stifling equity and justice?

  • How do intersections of race, class, gender, ability, sexuality, and other dimensions of difference play out in schools? How do we respond intersectionally? What is at risk when we ignore these intersections and how they operate together in education?

  • What are examples of K-12 education gone wrong? How can we improve education? What is most urgent and why?

  • How has COVID changed education in the short and long term? What should educators, educational leaders, and educational activists do to create a more just and humane educational system? How role do educators have in saving humanity?


Although authors are expected to address equity and justice work with strong ideological, theoretical, and conceptual grounding, they also are expected to address what strong equity and justice work looks like in practice, whether for classroom teachers, educational activists, student services personnel (such as counselors, psychologists, and social workers), school or district leaders, or a combination of these.


We are especially interested in books that 1) apply a critical equity and justice lens to trendy school practices and initiatives that tend to detour around direct confrontations with inequity and injustice and 2) that describe in detail how inequity and injustice operate in schools and then offer a deeply-informed, structurally-rooted vision for equity and justice.


Again, we are looking for equitable and socially just practices and models that are accessible and applicable to a target audience of educators or educational activists. We will be publishing books written in conversational language that invite readers into difficult conversations and avoid academic jargon.


Please follow the guidelines below when preparing a proposal for the series.




Please provide a working title and subtitle for the book. (If you have more than one idea for the title and subtitle, feel free to list them.) 




In a few paragraphs, please describe your book, its purpose, any unique features you intend to include, and its central arguments and messages.


Please include an additional paragraph or two describing as specifically as possible how the book fits  into the purposes of the series, the areas of knowledge or frameworks from which you intend to draw (e.g., critical race theory, culturally relevant pedagogy, queer theory, educational equity, social justice leadership), and how you intend to make your book relevant and accessible to people working in educational institutions.


Finally, include a paragraph that details what you have to say about the topic of your book that is new or unique (from an equity and justice point of view).




Please include proposed chapter titles and a brief summary—a paragraph or two—of each chapter.





  • The primary audience

  • All people, groups, professions, organizations, or schools who my find this book useful

  • Potential opportunities for bulk adoptions

  • The knowledge, skills, education, and/or level of experience that readers will need in order to understand and use the book




Please list other books on this subject published within the last 10 years. Include the title, author, publisher, year of publication, and price, as well as a brief description of how your proposed book will differ from each in terms of coverage, approach, and/or intended audience.




Please let us know (a) your ideas about how we could market your book and (b) any independent promotion and outreach plans you might have. These might include:

  • professional associations to which you belong and other institutional or organizational affiliations

  • forthcoming workshops or presentations

  • conferences and meetings you regularly attend

  • your mailing lists, social networking, and website activities

  • contacts or venues that may be interested in promoting sales of your book, such as

  • journals/periodicals

  • well-known colleagues

  • bookstores and other retail outlets

  • schools and colleges




Estimate the length of your manuscript (at approximately 250 words per manuscript page), and describe any figures or charts you might include.




When do you expect to finish a draft manuscript? Please be as specific as possible in terms of the month and year you estimate the writing can be completed.




Please enclose your résumé or curriculum vitae and complete contact information. Describe what experience or expertise make you a good choice to write this particular book. What unique insights or frameworks do you bring to the project? List any previous publications (books, chapters, articles, blogs, et al.). For any books you’ve published, please include publisher, publication date, and available sales figures.




Please provide a sample portion of the manuscript. A complete sample chapter is ideal, but a writing sample on the same topic—perhaps an article or blog post—that demonstrates your equity and justice thinking on the topic and an engaging, accessible writing voice, will also suffice.


We invite you to send a brief (one or two paragraph) description of your book idea—tentative title, primary focus, central arguments or purposes, and unique features—to Cheryl at or Paul at before submitting a full proposal.


Please use the subject line Norton ESJ Proposal.

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