• AACTE 70th Annual Meeting, Baltimore, MD

Archive for September, 2015

Here They Come: Proposed Federal Regulations for Teacher Preparation Programs

The U.S. Department of Education is moving on finalizing the proposed federal regulations for all 25,000 teacher preparation programs across the country. Given some questions and misinformation I have received since the comment period closed, I want to clarify a key piece of information:

As drafted and released in December 2014, these proposed regulations would apply to each individual teacher preparation program at your institution regardless of whether you offer TEACH grants.

Accreditation Survey: Let Us Hear From You

The AACTE Board of Directors subcommittee formed to engage with the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) has been working throughout the summer, and now it’s time for you to share your perspectives with us.

Please take a moment to complete our short survey about accreditation. In order to be better informed on where our members are in relationship to our national accrediting body, we hope to capture your voices to help guide our ongoing conversations with CAEP.

Student Teaching Innovation: Coteaching Trios at Colorado State University

A new video in AACTE’s Research-to-Practice Spotlight Series explores the innovative coteaching model of student teaching newly employed by Colorado State University, offering perspectives from administrators, student teachers, and a cooperating teacher. This blog highlights some of the observations they share about the model.

An innovative coteaching model is reshaping student teaching for candidates at Colorado State University (CSU), placing two teacher candidates with one cooperating teacher for a semester-long collaborative learning experience.

How Can You Use Twitter With Teacher Candidates? Join Our Webinar Sept. 29

Education is no longer a profession in which teachers retreat to their classrooms and close their doors to work in isolation. Today, many teachers are involved in their professional associations, school-based professional learning teams, and increasingly in virtual collaboration of different kinds. Using a variety of technology tools such as Edmodo, Google Hangouts, Twitter, and more, many teachers are reaching out beyond their schools, districts, and even countries, to develop virtual networks that provide both professional challenge and support.

Participants Needed for TPACK Diagnostic Tool Case Study

AACTE’s Committee on Innovation and Technology seeks participants to pilot a recently developed formative diagnostic tool designed for self-reflection and guidance for educational leaders as they develop technology-rich models for teacher candidates to successfully become 21st-century educators. The diagnostic tool serves as an opportunity to examine current practices and help develop realistic goals for program development. Participation in this study will consist of a telephone interview that should take no more than one hour.

The tool utilizes the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework to further the development of TPACK-proficient teacher candidates. Leaders can use the diagnostic tool as a means to gather assessment and curriculum development data and to make decisions as to where to further emphasize selected steps in the process. By engaging in self-assessment throughout the change process, deans, chairs, or department heads can record progress, determine necessary recalibrations, and keep their vision in mind as they continue their evolution towards the goal of preparing TPACK-ready teacher candidates.

Pedro Noguera to Speak at AACTE Annual Meeting

Be inspired at the AACTE 68th Annual Meeting by Pedro Noguera, one of the nation’s most important voices on the state of education today. Noguera will speak at the Welcoming Session, to be held Tuesday, February 23, 2016 at The Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.

An expert on school reform, diversity, and the achievement gap, Noguera is a powerful, articulate, and far-reaching advocate for a strong and vibrant public education system. He is Distinguished Professor of Education in the Graduate School of Education and Information Sciences at the University of California Los Angeles. Previously, he served as Peter I. Agnew Professor of Education at New York University and as executive director of the Metropolitan Center for Research on Equity and the Transformation of Schools.

Teacher Preparation Is Smart (Response to ‘Teachers Aren’t Dumb’)

Sometimes the story is as good as the headlines, and sometimes it’s even better. The New York Times op-ed “Teachers Aren’t Dumb” (Sept. 8) by Psychologist Daniel T. Willingham is a case in point. As Willingham notes, contrary to popular belief, new teachers are solid academic performers. And as his article asserts, they can benefit from the research on effective teaching that is being conducted in the schools of education that prepare them. Willingham also points out—with rhetorical hyberbole—that not all preparation programs are using the latest research. While program quality varies, the excellent preparation provided by the universities whose researchers he cites illustrates that teacher education has strong exemplars. Unfortunately, Willingham does not acknowledge the widespread change within the education preparation community.

The direction of today’s preparation programs is truly good news. Willingham accurately identifies two guiding principles for improving teacher preparation and program accountability: evaluate programs based on graduates’ performance on a rigorous, credible culminating assessment, and base that assessment (and programs’ content) on evidence of what works best for student learning.

Teachers Learn in the Classroom, Too

Research out of Brown University (RI) shows that teachers improve tremendously in their first year of teaching and continue to do so during their career. Researchers John Papay and Matthew Kraft discussed this work in a free AACTE webinar last month, “Toward a Broader Conceptualization of Teacher Quality: How Schools Influence Teacher Effectiveness,” which was recorded and is now available in AACTE’s Resource Library.

Papay, assistant professor of education and economics, and Kraft, assistant professor of education, shared findings from their research, recently published in Productivity Returns to Experience in the Teacher Labor Market: Methodological Challenges and New Evidence on Long-Term Career Improvement and Can Professional Environments in Schools Promote Teacher Development? Explaining Heterogeneity in Returns to Teaching Experience. These studies show that teachers’ learning develops exponentially in their early years in the classroom but also continues to grow throughout their careers at a slower rate, and teachers working in more supportive professional environments improve their effectiveness more over time than teachers working in less supportive contexts.

CEEDAR, AACTE Working to Engage Educators for All Students

Last month, we were honored to participate and speak at a convening to support teacher educators in their work to prepare teachers to educate all learners, including students with disabilities. At the meeting in Indianapolis in August, the University of Florida’s Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEEDAR) Center convened educator preparation leaders from the center’s partner states to support their shared reform agenda.

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