Under the Dome

Hunt Institute moves to Duke

The Hunt Institute has a new home down the road from UNC – Duke University.

On Thursday, Duke University announced that its Sanford School of Public Policy was joining forces with the James B. Hunt Institute for Educational Leadership and Policy.

“This partnership between the Sanford School at Duke and the Hunt Institute unites the legacies of two of North Carolina’s most transformative governors and creates new opportunities to connect research and practice in the most vital areas of education policy,” Duke President Richard H. Brodhead said in a statement.

The announcement comes after the Hunt Institute and UNC-Chapel Hill severed ties following the Republican-led legislature’s move to cut funding for the entity. Though the institute was nonpartisan, it was closely identified with its namesake, North Carolina’s former four-term governor, a Democrat.

The institute, established by the UNC Board of Governors in 2001, has made a national name for itself by convening governors and other policymakers to explore research and issues aimed at improving public education.

At Duke, the institute will collaborate with the Sanford School on a national conference on early childhood education and policy.

“We could not be more excited about the possibilities for engagement and collaboration with Duke University and the Sanford School of Public Policy,” Hunt, chair of the Hunt Foundation Board, said about the move. “It was Terry Sanford’s advocacy and commitment to improving public education for all that’s always been a driving force for me. It’s the same commitment that the Sanford School brings to education today and why this alliance is a perfect fit.”

The Sanford School has experts in education research and child policy. It is home to the Duke Center for Child and Family Policy.

This is the second score by Duke following political fallout at UNC.

Former UNC President Tom Ross, ousted by the Board of Governors in 2015, is now the first Terry Sanford Distinguished Fellow at Duke’s Sanford School, where he is working on a project on bipartisan redistricting. Ross recently accepted a new job at the Volcker Alliance, a nonpartisan organization in New York.