Loyola University Chicago

Civitas ChildLaw Center

School of Law

Leadership and Faculty

Dean Michael Kaufman serves as Director of the Education Law and Policy Institute as well as Dean and Professor of Law at Loyola University Chicago. Dean Kaufman is the author of countless books and articles on education law and policy, including the leading text-book used in law school and education classes devoted to education: Education Law, Policy and Practice (2009). He has been a member of the law school faculty for more than 25 years, and teaches courses in education law, education policy and comparative education law.

Dean Kaufman also has been elected to three terms as a member of the board of education for a large, diverse elementary school district in the Chicago area, and has served as its president and vice-president. Before joining the law school faculty, Dean Kaufman litigated education and disability rights issues at a leading law firm, clerked for Judge Nathaniel Jones of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and counseled the parties in the Kansas City school desegregation matter.

Miranda Johnson is the Associate Director of the Education Law and Policy Institute. In this role, she works closely with Dean Kaufman to effectuate the Institute’s goals in the areas of curriculum development, research and outreach, and educational advocacy.  She also teaches experiential learning courses in education law and supervises law students in the representation of parents and students in school discipline and special education cases.  Before assuming her position in the Institute, she served for two years as the Salisbury Clinical Teaching Fellow in Child and Family Law in the Loyola’s Civitas ChildLaw Clinic.

Prior to joining the law school faculty, Professor Johnson worked as a staff attorney at Advocates for Children of New York (AFC), where she provided legal representation in administrative proceedings and class action lawsuits related to educational equity in New York City.  She also clerked for the Honorable Allyne R. Ross in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.  Before law school, she worked in Tanzania for three years at a local civil society organization focusing on women’s rights and gender equality. She also taught high school social studies. She holds a J.D. from New York University School of Law and a Master in Public Affairs from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

Kathleen Hirsman is the Institute’s Senior Lecturer in Residence. Professor Hirsman has over 25 years of experience in school law practice, representing and counseling school districts in board governance issues, student issues, labor and personnel matters, collective bargaining, special education, general litigation, and in a general corporate advisory capacity. She also has prior experience teaching English as a second language in public schools and at the college level.

Professor Hirsman is an adjunct faculty member of the graduate departments of education of Benedictine University and Concordia University, and she has taught graduate courses in school law for over 20 years. She holds a J.D. from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and a Master's degree in Linguistics from the University of Illinois.


In addition to the leadership of the Education Law and Policy Institute, the following faculty and staff members teach substantive education law courses and/or oversee volunteer opportunities in the education law field and can serve as a valuable resource to students on matters relating to curriculum and/or job opportunities:

Mary Bird, Director of Public Interest Programs 
Hillary Coustan, Adjunct Faculty
Josie Gough, Director of Experiential Learning 
Maureen Hager, Adjunct Faculty
Maureen Kieffer, Associate Director of Career Services and Public Service Law 
Monica Llorente, Adjunct Faculty
Micki Moran, Adjunct Faculty