Cairen Ireland

Cairen Ireland, Ed.D. '20, is currently the Assistant Principal of Florence Griffith Joyner Elementary in Watts, California. She was raised in Carson, California, where she matriculated through Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). Cairen earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from the University of La Verne in California. After undergrad, Cairen returned to LAUSD as a special educator and began her career at Grape Street Elementary, where she taught students with disabilities in grades 2-5, was a math coach, and an intervention coordinator. While gaining her tenure, Cairen also attended California State University Dominguez Hills. By 2007, she earned an education specialist credential, Master of Arts degree in special education, and her administrative services credential. When Cairen completed her 13th year at Grape Street Elementary, she began to seek administrative opportunities within the Division of Special Education. With the blessings of her Principal, colleagues, and parents, she continued her professional growth as a Least Restrictive Environment Specialist. Cairen supported networks of schools with compliance and advocated for inclusive learning environments prior to transitioning to her current role. Cairen's dissertation, "Racial Profiling in Education: A Study of Teacher Perceptions of Students in Special Education,” examined how White teachers perceived their discourse with African American males in special education and how the teachers perceived their influence on the   educational trajectory of their African American male students.