Dr. Camika Royal is an incisive scholar-warrior, a critical race theorist, an urban education expert with more than 20 years of experience, and a fierce defender of our collective humanity. She uses her teaching, speaking, and writing to oppose anglonormativity, antiblack racism, cultural oppression, patriarchy, and transphobia. Her work focuses on the intersections of race, politics, history, and urban school reform. After teaching, coaching teachers, and helping to lead a charter high school in the public schools of Baltimore City and Washington, D.C., Dr. Royal returned to her hometown—Philadelphia—and transitioned to higher education. She taught pre-service teachers at Lincoln University of Pennsylvania other colleges and universities in the Philadelphia and Baltimore regions, while she continued to coach and support urban school leaders and teacher educators.
"She is a highly requested speaker, consultant, and professional developer..."
In 2014, she returned to Baltimore as Assistant Professor of Urban Education at Loyola University Maryland. There, she helped to launch the School of Education’s urban education minor, and for two years, she led the Center for Innovation in Urban Education (CIUE). Under her leadership, the CIUE’s externally facing work was aimed toward anti-racist, anti-oppressive education in partnership with urban schools and community organizations. The internally facing work was devoted to challenging the color-evasive racist ideology that permeates traditional pre-service preparation and in-service educator development. During her tenure, she established the CIUE’s first ever Community Advisory Board, secured a partnership with the Baltimore Algebra Project, and brought the Free Minds, Free People Conference to Loyola University Maryland in the summer of 2017. In 2021, Dr. Royal was tenured and promoted to the rank of Associate Professor.
Dr. Royal’s debut book, Not Paved For Us: Black Educators and Public School Reform in Philadelphia, was released in 2022 from Harvard Education Press. She is a highly requested speaker, consultant, and professional developer on issues of school context-based racism and other forms of oppression through ideologies, policies, and practices. Dr. Royal earned her bachelor of arts degree in English Literature at North Carolina Central University, her master of arts in teaching degree at Johns Hopkins University, and her doctor of philosophy in urban education at Temple University.