Kathleen P. Loftus, EdD, is a Full-Time Lecturer in the Education Department at Columbia College Chicago, where she teaches courses in Educational Psychology and Exceptional Children for both the Early Childhood and the Master of Arts in Teaching programs.
Dr. Loftus joined Columbia College Chicago in 2013. She holds an EdD in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Special Education from Nova Southeastern University (2006); an MA in Counseling from Northeastern Illinois University (1990); and a BA in Communications, also from Northeastern (1988). In addition, Dr. Loftus completed post-graduate programs and was awarded State certifications in Special Education teaching, Prevocational Coordinator, School Guidance, School Administration, Director of Special Education and School Superintendency.
Prior to entering the field of Education, Dr. Loftus worked for several years as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor to adults needing to change careers due to injury. She successfully placed numerous individuals into rewarding alternative careers. Since then, Dr. Loftus spent the majority of her subsequent 20-year career in Education working in and overseeing high-needs, low-performing schools. She has served as a teacher, vocational coordinator, guidance counselor, school building administrator, district special ed administrator and State monitor of special ed compliance. In her roles as State monitor for the Illinois State Board of Education, Dr. Loftus monitored numerous Chicago Public Schools for their compliance with the Least Restrictive mandate of the Individuals’ with Disabilities Education Act. Dr. Loftus also conducted extensive research on nationwide teacher licensing practices for ISBE, as well as presenting at State conferences on Transition Planning and implementing LRE.
For the past ten years, in addition to working as an administrator, case manager and district testing coordinator for one of Illinois’s school districts, Dr. Loftus also regularly taught graduate courses in Special Education, Action Research for Teachers, Research for Administrators, Behavior Management, Public Relations and Educational Psychology for two Chicago-area universities. As an ISBE-approved Professional Development Provider, Dr. Loftus has developed and presented on a variety of topics related to school improvement at school professional development days, throughout her career. She continues to serve as a consultant to schools and districts throughout Chicago the area. She also serves as an advocate to parents of students with disabilities. Her areas of expertise include special education, including current State and Federal rules and laws, student behavior management, student transition planning, response-to-intervention procedures, career and vocational development, as well as action and longitudinal research.
Dr. Loftus’ greatest passion has long been related to public school improvement. In 2006 she authored, “Set Up to Fail: 100 Things Wrong with America’s Schools,” and has contributed numerous op-ed articles to “EducationNews.org,” a nationwide daily online publication with renowned writers from around the globe addressing current issues in education.
Believing strongly that, given the right opportunities, all students can become successful and self-sufficient adults, Dr. Loftus continues to explore and research various issues and practices affecting student learning, including exclusionary and ineffective school practices, unequal school opportunities, student discipline matters, student dropouts, and student college and career access.Dr. Loftus is a member Mensa, as well as the Council for Exceptional Children, the Learning Disability Association, and the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Contact Dr. Loftus:
Dr. Kathleen Loftus
Columbia College Chicago
600 S. Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605
33 E. Congress Parkway, Room 425