CFPI Report Shared by Childcare Providers at Missouri Child Advocacy Day

Hundreds of childcare providers, parents, and advocates gathered at the Missouri capitol building in Jefferson City last week for Child Advocacy Day. The groups visited with legislators across the political spectrum to talk about the importance of high-quality, affordable early childhood education. Advocates distributed copies of the Clark Fox-Policy Institute’s report, Launching Lifelong Success, which […]

Ellicia Lanier named first Clark-Fox Policy Institute Scholar-in-Residence

The Clark-Fox Policy Institute has named Ellicia Lanier as its inaugural Scholar-in-Residence. Lanier is the founding Executive Director of Urban Sprouts Child Development Center and serves on the steering committee of the Gateway Early Childhood Alliance to reimagine St. Louis’ early childcare system. With over 20 years of experience in early childhood policy and practice, […]

Child well-being experts from research, practice, and policy come together at Bright Futures Ahead panel

The room was buzzing with ideas and inspiration last Tuesday night when the Clark-Fox Policy Institute hosted Bright Futures Ahead: Essential Techniques and Policies for Supporting and Uplifting Today’s Youth. The event brought together child well-being experts from research, policy, and practice to discuss how we can work together to improve child well-being in St. […]

St. Louis policy leader Mallory Rusch shares her biggest lessons learned with Graduate Policy Scholars

Mallory Rusch, Executive Director of Empower Missouri, joined Gary Parker, Director of the Clark-Fox Policy Institute, and students from the Graduate Policy Scholars program on Friday, November 17th for an intimate conversation over pizza. Mallory shared stories of her biggest policy wins and losses and how she works to advance progressive legislation in a conservative […]

2023 Racial Equity Summit Sparks Ideas and Builds Momentum for Change

The 2023 St. Louis Racial Equity Summit brought together more than 750 advocates, activists, and allies committed to addressing systemic inequities from education to housing to healthcare and beyond. For three days, attendees explored the theme of “Together We Rise: The Power of Community,” featuring thought-provoking presentations and conversations focused on the signature priorities of […]

Newest Cohort of Graduate Policy Scholars Begins Training

The Clark-Fox Policy Institute welcomed 33 new Scholars-in-Training to the 2023-2024 Graduate Policy Scholar program. The year-long program focuses on experiential skill-building opportunities to develop greater efficacy for engaging in the policy process. Over the next academic year, students will complete their own “Passport to Policy,” choosing from exclusive program events and networking opportunities to […]

INsights Discusses Advancing People of Color at Nonprofits

Last month, the Berges Family Foundation Conference Center at Delmar DivINe hosted the latest iteration of INsights. Co-sponsored by the Clark-Fox Policy Institute, Center for Human Service Leadership (CHSL), and Delmar DivINe, the session was titled “From Ally to Co-Conspirator: Advancing People of Color in Nonprofit Leadership.” Leslie Gill, president of Rung For Women, and the agency’s […]

2023 MACRO United Conference A Huge Success

For many, it was a reunion, for others an opportunity to forge new connections. The Brown School at Washington University recently played host to the 2023 MACRO United Conference and Teaching Institute, a four-day event that brought together over 90 social work faculty, students, and practitioners from across the United States.  Co-sponsored by the Clark-Fox Policy Institute, […]

Trans Kids Need Access to Evidence-Based Care

The views expressed are solely that of Professor Goldbach and Ms. Dunlap based on their scholarly expertise. It is not an official statement from Washington University. A recent opinion piece by Jamie Reed titled “I thought I was saving trans kids. Now I’m blowing the whistle” frames itself as an exposé of the Washington University […]

Clark-Fox Policy Institute 5-Year Celebration Recap

Photo of Gary Parker. Text reads Celebrating 5 years of Amplifying Impact Oct 13 2022

Amplifying impact by connecting evidence to policy On Thursday, October 13th, the Clark-Fox Policy Institute celebrated its fifth anniversary with an event in Hillman Hall.  Rev. Bethany Johnson-Javois, President and CEO of the Deaconess Foundation, who served as the emcee for the launch of the institute, stepped back into the role five years later. Mayor […]

CFPI Practicum Student, Alyssa Burris, Recap’s United 4 Children’s Foundation to Thrive Webinar: Preschool to Promise Pipeline  

When families are constantly coping with poverty and racism, access to high-quality early childhood education (ECE) is limited. The result – this early educational gap increases the likelihood of a child coming into contact with the criminal legal system. On August 25, United 4 Children presented their webinar, Building the Preschool to Promise Pipeline. Co-sponsored […]

Save the Date for Our 5th Anniversary

Photo of Gary Parker. Text reads Celebrating 5 years of Amplifying Impact Oct 13 2022

Clark-Fox Policy Institute: Five Years of Amplifying Impact Thursday, October 13, 20225pm – Reception with light refreshments6pm – ProgramBrown School at Washington University The Clark-Fox Policy Institute invites you to attend its five-year anniversary celebration, Amplifying Impact: Continuing the momentum of the first five years. Featuring: Bethany Johnson-Javois President and CEO of the Deaconess Foundation Tishaura […]

State of the Agency: United 4 Children turns 10 years old this year

Foundation to Thrive Webinar Series Thursday, November 17, 2022 11 a.m. — 12 noon Zoom — register to get the link to join! State of the Agency — United 4 Children turns 10 years old this year! Learn more from United 4 Children Executive Director Deanna Finch about how the agency is building a foundation […]

Are You a Business Leader?

Here’s Why You Should Care About Early Childhood Education The Clark-Fox Policy Institute and United 4 Children, hosted its second webinar in the Foundation to Thrive Webinar Series, Are You a Business Leader? Here’s Why You Should Care about Early Childhood Education. Access to quality early childhood education is critical to the lifelong well-being of […]

Advocacy & Allyship: Supporting Transgender Youth

trans youth with freckles and wearing a denim jacket. "Supporting Transgender Youth" cfpi news

The Clark-Fox Policy Institute, in cooperation with the Brown School’s Open Classroom, celebrated and recognized Transgender Day of Visibility with Advocacy & Allyship: Supporting Transgender Youth, a webinar conference attended by more than 300 online participants. Tonya Edmond, interim co-dean at the Brown School, opened the session with remarks of gratitude and acknowledged all transgender panelist […]

2021-2022 Graduate Policy Scholar Induction Ceremony

Forty-One New Inductees Join the Ranks of Trained Graduate Policy Scholars On May 12, 2022, the Graduate Policy Scholars Program inducted forty-one new scholars. These  students dedicate themselves to a yearlong learning experience designed to enhance their knowledge, skills and abilities around policy and advocacy. This marks the program’s fifth year, and now over 250 […]

Response to the Uvalde School Shooting

Girl with red hair and wearing orange shirt drawing on paper. Text reads: Response to the Uvalde school shooting. CFPI news

Dear Friends, Today is a particularly difficult day. I know I am not alone in my heartbreak and grief over the loss of the 19 children and 2 teachers killed in Uvalde, Texas. Furthermore, the trauma of the shooting inflicted on the survivors and the families of the victims has only just begun. For children […]

Graduate Policy Scholars Program Welcomes Allison Gibbs

Photo of Allison Gibbs. GPS program welcomes Allison Gibbs. CFPI news

A Discussion on “Building Political Infrastructure in STL + ESTL— For Us, By Us” (March 2022) The Clark-Fox Policy Institute’s Graduate Policy Scholars program is in its fifth year.  This program provides students the ability to supplement their  course work with experiential opportunities to engage in policy practice and to meet with and learn from leading […]

Advocacy & Allyship: Towards a More Racially Just St. Louis

Black child and white child playing with clay. Text reads towards a more racially just St Louis Advocacy and Allyship. CFPI news

(March 2022) As part of the Brown School’s Black History Month celebration, the Clark-Fox Policy Institute co-hosted “Advocacy & Allyship: Towards a More Racially Just St. Louis”.  Over 240 viewers from across the region joined some of the most respected local Black leaders to discuss the gains made, the challenges that remain, and ways in which everyone can contribute to the movement […]

Washington People: Sheretta Butler-Barnes | The Source | Washington University in St. Louis

Photo of Sheretta Butler Barnes. Text reads: Washington People. CFPI news

Sheretta Butler Barnes, assistant professor in the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis, focuses her research on structural racism and inequalities in education. In this video, she talks about her motivation and her work, including a program to encourage girls of color in STEM subjects. Source: Washington People: Sheretta Butler-Barnes | The Source […]

1 in 3 Children Investigated for Abuse/Neglect by 18

Photo of 2 teens. 1 in 3 children investigated for abuse and neglect. CFPI news

December 20, 2016 The first academic study to estimate the cumulative lifetime risk of a child maltreatment investigation, completed by researchers at the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis, reveals that 37 percent of U.S. children prior to their 18th birthday are the subject of an investigated child neglect and abuse report — […]

Protect emotional well-being of young people

December 15, 2016St. Louis Post Dispatch – Opinion According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, there have been over 800 incidents of hateful harassment since the election. Young people are vulnerable to the contentiousness that continues, particularly youth of color. Source:

Supporting the Young, Gifted and at Risk

December 5, 2016 Researchers, practitioners, community members and students from across the United States convened at the Brown School, Nov. 11, to share information and discuss the challenges to the mental health and emotional well-being of college students of color. Source:

Science, Empirical Data Must Guide Future Health Care Policy Decisions

November 10, 2016 “Countless studies have demonstrated that the lack of proper health care correlates to reduced life expectancy and increased health disparities,” McKay said. “It is our duty as social workers and public health professionals to advocate for the use of science and empirical data to guide future policy initiatives and legislation to improve […]

Public Health and Social Work in the Political Process

October 28, 2016 Sarah Moreland-Russell, Clark Fox Policy Institute Senior Scholar, recounts her experience as the American Health Association’s Public Health Fellow in Government in Washington, D.C. As a congressional staffer for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York), Moreland-Russell had a chance-of-a-lifetime opportunity to work directly on federal policymaking. Source:

Home Delinquency Rates are Lower Among Households in the Affordable Care Act Marketplace

Photo of child wearing a pink headband playing with a toy stethascope. Text reads: Home delinquency rates are lower with ACA. CFPI news

January 12, 2017 A new study, “Home Delinquency Rates Are Lower Among ACA Marketplace Households: Evidence from a Natural Experiment,” published through the Brown School’s Center for Social Development, shows that families who get health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are  more likely to make their rent and mortgage payments than are those […]

Brown School statement on immigration executive order

Smiling young Black woman wearing white hijab and holding a notebook. Text reads: Brown School statement on Immigration Executive order. CFPI news

January 30, 2017 Brown School Dean Mary McKay issues statement on the impact of the immigration executive order and reiterates the School’s commitment for advancing equity and social change. Source:

St. Louis Mayoral Forum 2017

A photo of mayoral candidates sitting on stage for the mayoral forum

February 22, 2017 The City of St. Louis is preparing to elect a new mayor for the first time in 16 years. The Clark-Fox Policy Institute co-sponsored a mayoral forum that allowed concerned voters to hear directly from the candidates on issues facing the City. Held at The Sheldon before a standing room only crowd, […]

St. Louis leaders discuss upcoming mayoral election, issues facing the region

A photo of Tom Irwin in front of the arch

February 27, 2017 A trio of St. Louis political and business leaders talked about economic and racial issues surrounding the April 4 St. Louis mayoral election, the first in 16 years not to feature current Mayor Francis Slay. The panel was co-hosted by the Gephardt Institute for Civic and Community Engagement and the Clark-Fox Policy […]

Advocates push for prioritizing a fully funded Affordable Housing Trust Fund over new stadium

A headshot of Molly Metzger

March 21, 2017 Debate over funding of a new soccer stadium in St. Louis continues with a discussion about the need for affordable housing. “The Affordable Housing Trust Fund is a tool the city has to improve neighborhoods, households and the families that reside in them,” Karl Guenther said. Advocates who oppose Proposition 1 (a 0.05% use […]

Students Engage in Policy Practice on Capitol Hill

US Capitol Bldg. Text reads: Students Engage in Policy Practice on Capitol Hill. CFPI news

March 29, 2017 With Capitol Hill as their classroom, 23 Brown School students spent Spring Break immersed in policy education and training in Washington, D.C.  Throughout the week, they learned from a variety of policy practitioners and government officials working on issues connected to the Brown’s School’s core mission of advancing social change through education, […]

The Earned Income Tax Credit and the white working class

Man with hardhat leaning against wall. Text reads: The Earned Income Tax Credit and the white working class. CFPI News

April 18, 2017 In a recent blog post, the Brookings Institution outlines the broad-reaching benefits of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), particularly how it crosses race and education lines, as well as rural and urban boundaries. Since it’s creation in 1975, the EITC has gained bi-partisan support and has shown to reduce poverty, encourage […]

Missouri Senate votes to fully fund the School Foundation Formula

a yellow school bus

April 25, 2017 For the first time since 2005, the school foundation formula will be fully funded. This will allow state funding to be allocated to previous legislation such as the PreK law of 2014. This legislation provides that schools can receive state funding for up to four percent of their at-risk three and four-year-olds […]

New guidelines for smart decarceration offer concrete strategies for policymakers

headshot of pettus davis

May 3, 2017 “As the era of mass incarceration appears to be coming to an end, promoting smart decaraceration in the United States requires deliberate action,” said Pettus-Davis, assistant professor and director of the Institute for Advancing Justice Research and Innovation. Pettus-Davis is co-author of “Guideposts for the Era of Smart Decarceration: Smart Decarceration Strategies for Practitioners, […]

Uninsured breast cancer patients more likely to die

Black woman holding an image of breasts. Text reads: Insurance increases survival. CFPI news

May 8, 2017 Uninsured women with breast cancer were nearly 2.6 times more likely to have a late stage diagnosis than cancer patients who were insured, finds a new study from Kimberly Johnson, associate professor at the Brown School. The study, “Breast Cancer Stage Variation and Survival in Association with Insurance Status and Sociodemographic Factors in […]

St. Louis voters approved $5 million for affordable housing, but budget routinely falls short

Image of father and daughter looking into a dollhouse. Text reads: affordable housing budget. CFPI news

May 22, 2017 St. Louis is on track to underfund the city’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund for the sixth straight year, despite a $5 million minimum annual allocation voters passed in 2002. This comes about a month after voters approved a half-cent sales tax increase for public transit and affordable housing. Washington University assistant professor Molly […]

Some ACA costs are offset by societal savings linked to fewer home delinquencies

June 13, 2017 Low-income people who gain health insurance are much more likely to make their rent and mortgage payments, according to a new Washington University study of families living near the poverty line. Lead researcher Emily Gallagher, with the Center for Social Development (CSD), says “the spin-off benefits to the community may offset a substantial share […]

Senate plan is biggest cut yet to health-care safety net

June 26, 2017 Timothy McBride, professor at the Brown School and co-director of the Center for Health Economics and Policy, expects that the bill will lead to over 24 million people being uninsured and very large, perhaps devastating, cuts to the Medicaid program, which currently covers about 75 million children, disabled, aged and other adults. Source:

Parker Leads Community Discussion on Communications and Social Justice

Gary Parker sitting on a stage moderating a panel

On January 20, 2018, Gary Parker, Associate Dean of External Affairs and Director of the Clark-Fox Policy Institute at the Brown School, moderated a panel discussion hosted by the Community Service Public Relations Council (CSPRC) titled Aligning Our Work with Action: Communicating During Times of Unrest and Uncertainty. Parker led the group through a conversation […]

Three questions on economic insecurity with Mark Rank

August 21, 2017 Rank and Hirschl are the authors of Chasing the American Dream: Understanding What Shapes Our Fortunes, which uses the Panel Study of Income Dynamics — the longest-running longitudinal household survey in the world — to paint a picture of income inequality in the United States. Using the same data, the two created a poverty risk calculator that […]

School health clinics are growing in number in St. Louis region 

August 23, 2017 Research has shown that poor health is a barrier to student learning, is associated with lower grades and is a common reason why students miss school or drop out. School-based health clinics such as Normandy’s are one of a number of ways educators are seeking to address not just their students’ educational needs, […]

Missouri Children’s Leadership Council advocacy efforts bring policy efforts to federal attention

August 30, 2017 Last week, Rep. Kathy Swan (R-147, Cape Girardeau) wrote an OpEd urging Congress to reauthorize and fund the Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visiting program (MIECHV). You can read Rep. Swan’s OpEd here. Additionally, Dana Carroll, Springfield’s Child Advocate, had a letter to the editor published asking congress to act before CHIP funding expires […]

Sheretta Butler-Barnes: Equity in Education

September 12, 2017 In summer 2017, Assistant Professor Sheretta Butler-Barnes continued her work with the Girls Inc. Eureka! Program, which exposes high school girls of color to an intensive STEM-based curriculum. Her research addresses structural racism and inequalities in education and youth development.

Disparities in educational experiences of black youth

September 20, 2017 A more comprehensive picture of mental health that includes subjective well-being and other positive mental health characteristics could lead to more successful educational experiences among black youth, finds a recent study from the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis. “We demonstrated the need to use a dual-factor model of mental health […]

WashU Expert: CHIP demise devastating to millions of American children

October 5, 2017 An estimated 9 million children are now covered by the CHIP program across the U.S. In Missouri, more 624,000 children are covered by a combination of CHIP and Medicaid, though most children are covered by Medicaid. “CHIP has led to a substantial reduction in the uninsured rate for children, to the point […]

Washington People: Sheretta Butler-Barnes

October 25, 2017 Sheretta Butler Barnes, assistant professor in the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis, focuses her research on structural racism and inequalities in education. In this video, she talks about her motivation and her work, including a program to encourage girls of color in STEM subjects.

Congressional briefing on human trafficking includes Washington University presence

A photo of a class in front of the capitol building in DC

November 16, 2017 The Clark-Fox Policy Institute (CFPI) at the Brown School and the Human Trafficking Collaborative Network (HTCN), a multidisciplinary group housed in the university’s Institute for Public Health, brought to Capitol Hill a delegation of Missouri researchers, advocates, law enforcement representatives, service providers and survivors to bring attention to the dehumanizing industry of […]

Legislator files bill aimed at protecting Missouri kids receiving CHIP

December 4, 2017 State Rep. Cora Faith Walker, D-Ferguson, has filed legislation that would require the Missouri Legislature to fund the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, if the federal government fails to budget money towards the program. Congress has not reapproved CHIP funding, which provides health coverage for nearly 90,000 Missouri kids. The Show-Me […]