Dr. Jane Fowler Morse

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Jane Fowler Morse lived in Washington, DC and suburban Philadelphia before moving to a chicken farm in rural southern New Jersey at age nine when her parents decided to move their children to the country. The family had 5,000 laying hens and supplemented their income with truck crops including strawberries, raspberries, cherries, and green peppers.

Jane studied French horn and played in the Haddonfield Symphony Orchestra as a teenager. She attended the Boston and Oberlin conservatories for a short time, but decided to attend the University of Chicago soon after. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Classical Languages and Literature, minoring in the archeology of the Bronze Age Aegean. Moving with her husband, Warner A. Morse, to Washington State University where he taught philosophy, Jane taught Humanities for several years before starting a family. She has three children who reside in Lawrence, Kansas and East Aurora, New York.

Later, the family moved to The University of Kansas, where Warner taught in the Philosophy Department until his death in 1991. Jane pursued a PhD in the Foundations of Education at the University of Kansas and obtained five certifications to teach in the Kansas public schools. Subsequently, she taught gifted education, grades 7-12, AP English Literature and Composition, AP European History, AP US History, and Humanities at Washburn Rural High School in Topeka, Kansas for 12 years.

After Warner’s death, Jane finished her doctorate and took a position at SUNY Geneseo in the School of Education teaching Foundations and other education courses in 1994. Dr. Morse teaches and serves on committees for masters’ theses in the graduate program that she helped to establish in Multicultural Education, Grades 1-6. She also teaches Humanities in the college. She currently serves on the Executive Committee, the Personnel Committee, and the Undergraduate Programs Committee of the Ella Cline Shear School of Education.

Dr. Morse’s book, A Level Playing Field: School Finance in the Northeast (2007), on legal battles over inequitable school funding was published by SUNY press. Her research concerns mainly focus on equity issues, although she publishes articles in the philosophy of education as well. Dr. Morse is the co-editor of the journal of the New York State Foundations of Education Association, Educational Change.

Dr. Morse is currently engaged in an eight-year longitudinal research project on the graduation rate of a cohort of Rochester City School students who have attended a two-week summer camp at Geneseo and a Saturday School that takes place during the school year following the camp. Dr. Morse works with Dr. Brian Morgan and a team of ten to fifteen undergraduate researchers on this longitudinal project. They are interviewing study participants every semester looking for factors and strategies that contribute to the eventual graduation of members of the cohort. The project, now entering its fifth year, is titled “Keeping Kids in School” [KKIS].

Dr. Morse is married to Dr. Lars Charles Mazzola, who teaches English at SUNY Brockport. They reside in Geneseo and enjoy music, gardening, canoeing, vegan cooking, working on the Mazzola family farm, and playing with the grandchildren.