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  • Founder

    Maurice Falk Professor in the Child Study Center; Associate Dean for Student Affairs, School of Medicine

    Research Interests
    • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive
    • Child Psychiatry
    • Education
    • Psychiatry
    • Race Relations
    • Schools

    Dr. James P. Comer is the Maurice Falk Professor of Child Psychiatry at the Yale University School of Medicine's Child Study Center in New Haven, Connecticut. He is known nationally and internationally for his creation of the Comer School Development Program in 1968. This teamwork concept promotes the collaboration of parents, educators and community to improve student development that, in turn, helps them achieve greater academic and overall school success.

    Dr. Comer's pioneering work in school restructuring has been featured in numerous newspaper, magazine and television reports and has been published in many academic journals. He is a co-founder and past president of the Black Psychiatrists of America. He has been a consultant to the Children's Television Workshop and has devoted his efforts to numerous local and national organizations serving children.

    He is the author of ten books, including Maggie's American Dream and Leave No Child Behind and the recipient of many honors and awards, including forty seven honorary degrees.

    In 2014 President Barack Obama appointed Dr. Comer to the President's Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans.

  • Associate Research Scientist in the Child Study Center; Director, Child and Adolescent Development School Development Program Yale Child Study Center

    Fay E. Brown, an Associate Research Scientist at the Child Study Center at Yale University, serves as the Director of Child and Adolescent Development for the School Development Program in that Center. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Connecticut in 1984 and later received a Master of Education degree in Guidance and Counseling, and then a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Howard University.

    Dr. Brown has worked at the elementary, high school and college levels, teaching and counseling students. In 1993, she was recognized by the National Association for Personal Workers (NAPW) for her outstanding contribution to
    student development. Her major focus is to help schools create and maintain developmentally appropriate conditions to ensure the holistic development of every child.

    Dr. Brown has served as educational consultant to various groups, including the educational task force of the United Church of Christ. She is a motivational speaker, and in that capacity, presents at local, national, and international events.

  • Lecturer in the Child Study Center; Director of Teaching and Learning for the School Development Program

    Camille J. Cooper, Ed.D. is Director of the School Development Program's Learning, Teaching and Development initiatives which include Teachers Helping Teachers and Balanced Curriculum programs. Teaching, Learning, and Development (T, L, &D) expands the focus of the Yale Child Study Center's School Development Program (SDP) from relationships and school climate to student achievement and school performance.

    Camille also leads the organization’s intake, implementation, and professional development activities for schools and districts. Implementation includes on-site workshops, consultation sessions, and school and classroom visits. Customized on-site professional development also supports the implementation process for schools and districts that have adopted the SDP program.

    Prior to joining the SDP, Camille served as a professional educator in public schools over 25 years. Her professional experiences include special education, career/vocational education, associate director of elementary humanities, associate director elementary language arts, assistant and elementary principal, executive director/assistant superintendent for academic services, curriculum and instruction, and executive regional principal/assistant superintendent.

    Camille attended Kent State University and earned a B.S. in elementary education and a M.Ed. in the education of exceptional individuals from Wright State University. She has completed postgraduate work at Miami University, Wright State University and the University of Dayton in the areas of supervision, curriculum and instruction, school administration and educational leadership. The doctorate degree in educational leadership and policy Southern Connecticut State University. Research focus is teacher collaboration and professional learning communities.

  • Lecturer in the Child Study Center

    Cynthia R. Savo, M.A. is responsible for the Comer SDP’s communications including the organization’s e-newsletter, YouTube, and Facebook pages, and web content. She also contributes to the organization's customized professional development activities with pre-K-12 educators.

    Savo rejoined the SDP staff in 2007 after ten years as the principal of Cynergy Associates, LLC, a consulting practice that served school districts, and other nonprofits. She consulted to the Rockefeller Foundation's Working Communities program for nine years, providing the officers with research to inform grant making and program impact; and assistance to grantees on proposal development and communications.

    In 1990 she joined the School Development Program staff and as the communications and dissemination manager, she used emerging technologies to link the SDP to its national network of school, districts, and universities. Savo was a member of the design and technology teams of the ATLAS Communities Project that brought together Harvard Project Zero, the Coalition of Essential Schools, the Education Development Center, and the School Development Program to design a "break the mold" education model.

    Savo has worked as a school counselor at an alternative high school and served as a grant writer for the New Haven Public Schools. She was a founder and publisher of the New Haven Independent, and was an aide to former U.S. Rep. Bruce A. Morrison.

    She has a B.S. in psychology from Georgetown University and an M.A. in counseling and community services from Fairfield University.