Bondy named new director of School of Teaching and Learning

Buffy Bondy



March 14, 2008



Buffy Bondy


Professor Elizabeth “Buffy” Bondy, known around the state for her work to turn around the fortunes of high-poverty schools, will be the next director of COE’s School of Teaching and Learning, Dean Catherine Emihovich announced last week.

“(She) has been an outstanding teacher and scholar at UF for many years, and is very service oriented both toward the university and the community,” Emihovich said.

Bondy will move into the position in August. She will replace Professor Tom Dana, who will become COE’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in July.

“I think one of my great strengths has always been my ability to work
with people,” Bondy said. “I hope to create an environment where each
of my colleagues feels valued and significant.”

A UF faculty member since 1989, Bondy has focused her research on
elementary education, particularly in high-poverty schools. Among her
other work, Bondy has served as Professor-in-Residence at Duval
Elementary School in northeast Gainesville, and helped the school move
from an F to an A rating in a single year.

Bondy also directs the UF Lastinger Center for Learning’s Teaching
Fellows program at Duval, a collaborative, professional development
program in which teachers engage in inquiry about their own practice
and their students’ learning.

She also heads COE’s long-running Bright Futures mentoring program,
which sends UF elementary education students to public housing
neighborhoods for regular visits with elementary-age children who need
help outside the classroom.

Bondy is planning to transition into her new position slowly, while
working to put major research projects “to bed.” Bondy said she is also
seeking a way to continue her involvement with Duval, and is seeking
someone take her place as the head of Bright Futures.

“I am so involved in all these things, I hate to let any of them go,”
she said. “But after 17 years of Bright Futures, for instance, it was
probably time to start thinking about who will run the program after

Bondy said Associate Professor Colleen Swain, STL’s associate director
and graduate coordinator, will be in charge of the department during
the transition period in July and August.

“I’m so lucky to get to transition in this way,” Bondy said. “Dr. Swain
knows so much about STL, and I expect to learn a lot from her.”

Bondy also expressed confidence that STL staff will make the transition an easy one.

“I know I can count on them,” Bondy said. “I’m very lucky to start a
new position with a staff that is so experienced, and that works so
well together.”