Key Professional Appointments

Assistant Professor, Education Policy, Organization and Leadership, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign


MA, Science and Math Education, University of California at Berkeley

BA, Molecular & Cell Biology, University of California at Berkeley

BA, Philosophy, University of California at Berkeley

MA, Economics, University of Southern California

PhD, Urban Education Policy, University of Southern California

Awards, Honors, Associations

Journal of Education Finance Article of the Year <em>National Education Finance Academy (2020)</em>

Emerging Education Policy Scholar <em>Thomas B. Fordham Institute (2019)</em>

New Scholar Grant <em>Association for Education Finance and Policy (2018)</em>

David L. Clark Scholar <em>University Council for Educational Administration (2018)</em>

Rossier/Graduate School Ph.D. Fellow <em>University of Southern California (2015-2019)</em>

Teaching Effectiveness Award <em>University of California, Berkeley (2009)</em>

Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor <em>University of California, Berkeley (2009)</em>

California Flanders Fellow <em>University of California, Berkeley (2007-2009)</em>

Distinction in General Scholarship <em>University of California, Berkeley (2004)</em>

Research & Service

I am an assistant professor of education policy, organization, and leadership in the College of Education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I use quantitative methods to study school finance, school choice, resource allocation in schools, and teacher quality. In addition to writing policy briefs and reports for policymakers and practitioners, my research has been published in a variety of peer-reviewed journals, including Educational PolicyJournal of Education FinanceAmerican Educational Research Journal, and Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis.

I completed a PhD in urban education policy and a MA in economics at the University of Southern California. Prior to enrolling at USC I earned a MA in science and math education and BAs in philosophy and molecular biology from the University of California, Berkeley and taught middle school science in Oakland and Los Angeles, California.


Marianno, B. D., Bruno, P., & Strunk, K. O. (2021). The Effect of Teachers’ Union Contracts on School District Efficiency: Longitudinal Evidence From California. SAGE Open, 11(1). https://doi.org/10.1177/2158244020988684  link >

Bruno, P., Rabovsky, S. J., & Strunk, K. O. (2020). Taking Their First Steps: The Distribution of New Teachers in School and Classroom Contexts and Implications for Teacher Effectiveness. American Educational Research Journal, 57(4), 1688-1729. https://doi.org/10.3102/0002831219882008  link >

Bruno, P. (2020). Teacher Screening and Hiring: Lessons from the Los Angeles Unified School District. Education Policy Innovation Collaborative, Michigan State University. https://epicedpolicy.org/teacher-screening-and-hiring-lessons-from-the-los-angeles-unified-school-district/

Mann, B. A., & Bruno, P. (Accepted/In press). The effects of charter school enrollment losses and tuition reimbursements on school districts: Lifting boats or sinking them? Educational Policy. https://doi.org/10.1177/0895904820951124  link >

Bruno, P. (2019, Sep 1). A Tough Assignment.

Bruno, P. (2019). Charter competition and district finances: Evidence from California. Journal of Education Finance, 44(4), 361-384. https://muse.jhu.edu/article/738160

Bruno, P., & Strunk, K. O. (2019). Making the Cut: The Effectiveness of Teacher Screening and Hiring in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 41(4), 426-460. https://doi.org/10.3102/0162373719865561  link >

Bruno, P. (2019). The Challenges of Health and Welfare Benefit Costs for California Districts. Policy Analysis for California Education. https://www.edpolicyinca.org/publications/challenges-employee-and-retiree-health-benefit-costs-california-districts

Lewis, C., Bruno, P., Raygoza, J., & Wang, J. (2019). Alignment of goals and perceptions of computing predicts students’ sense of belonging in computing. In ICER 2019 - Proceedings of the 2019 ACM Conference on International Computing Education Research (pp. 11-19). (ICER 2019 - Proceedings of the 2019 ACM Conference on International Computing Education Research). Association for Computing Machinery, Inc. https://doi.org/10.1145/3291279.3339426  link >

Bruno, P. (2018). District Dollars 2: California School District Finances, 2004-5 through 2016-17. Getting Down to Facts II. https://gettingdowntofacts.com/sites/default/files/2018-09/GDTFII_Report_Bruno.pdf

Strunk, K. O., Marsh, J., & Bruno, P. (2017). An Effective Teacher for Every Student: Developing a Research Agenda to Further Policy Change. Policy Analysis for California Education. https://www.edpolicyinca.org/publications/effective-teacher-every-student-developing-research-agenda-further-policy-change


Invited talk, Secondary CS Equity, Policy and Administration Issues: Lessons from California, 2020

Invited talk, Current School Finance Issues in California, 2019

Invited talk, Research Perspectives on School District Fiscal Pressures, 2019

Invited talk, The Challenges of Health and Welfare Benefit Costs for California Districts, 2019

Invited talk, District Dollars 2: California School District Finances, 2004-5 through 2016-17, 2018


<strong>UIUC College of Education COVID-19 Seed Funding</strong> (PI, $10,000) 2020-2021

Teacher Hiring Before, During, and After a Pandemic</p><p><strong>Google Computer Science Education Research (CS-ER) Program</strong> (Co-PI, $125,000) 2020-2021

Equitable Expansion of High School CS: Trends and Trade-offs Between and Within States


EPOL 590: Quantitative Policy Analysis (PhD)
EPOL 595: Independent Study (Action Research) (EdD)
EPOL 542/EOL 546: Public School Finance (EdM)


Public School Finance (EOL 546) Study of financing public education systems in the United States; focuses on the social, economic, political, legal, and technical dimensions of developing school finance policy for federal, state, and local governments; relates theory and research in public school finance to administrative practice in budgeting and financial administration.

Public School Finance (EPOL 542) Synchronous attendance required. Moodle LMS.

Public School Finance (EPOL 542)

Quantitative Policy Analysis (EPOL 590) Synchronous attendance required. Moodle LMS.

Quantitative Policy Analysis (EPS 590) Seminar in educational policy studies; sections offered in the following fields: (a) history of education; (b) philosophy of education; (c) comparative education; (d) social foundations of education; (e) philosophy of educational research; and (f) historical methods in education.

Profile Picture for Paul Bruno

Assistant Professor, Education Policy, Organization and Leadership



351 Education Building
1310 S. Sixth St.
Champaign, IL 61820

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