• AACTE 70th Annual Meeting, Baltimore, MD

Archive for September, 2015

Don’t Miss Out on AACTE in Vegas—Everyone Will BE THERE

The AACTE 68th Annual Meeting in Las Vegas will provide a forum for you to engage in meaningful deliberation, share the latest research and best practices, and become better equipped to drive change in your field. Each year, thousands of educators come from around the country to discuss their challenges, discover new strategies, and join the nationwide conversation on the future of the profession. Don’t be left out of the largest gathering of educator preparation professionals—everyone will BE THERE!


Four Weeks Left to Apply for AACTE Awards

Just 4 weeks remain before the deadline to submit entries for the 2016 AACTE Awards! Nominate your own program for one of our three Best Practice Awards, or enter an admired colleague in the running for a Professional Achievement Award. All entries must be received through AACTE’s online submission site by midnight EDT on Friday, October 9.

Spotlight on Colorado State University’s PDS Partnership

The latest video installment to AACTE’s Research-to-Practice Spotlight Series features university faculty, students, PK-12 cooperating teachers, and school leaders discussing the professional development school (PDS) model of clinical practice they use in Fort Collins, Colorado. For this blog, one of the partnership’s leaders—Donna Cooner, director of Colorado State University’s School of Teacher Education and Principal Preparation—spoke with AACTE Director of Member Engagement Tim Finklea about how this model works. Key lessons from their discussion are highlighted below.

New Think Tank Seeks to Inform Education Policy With Timely Research

A new nonprofit think tank led by Linda Darling-Hammond launched last week, aiming to inform education-related policies by sponsoring high-quality research on timely topics and making the findings easy to access and interpret. This Learning Policy Institute will target PK-12 policies at the federal, state, and local level and will both examine existing studies and conduct or sponsor new research to meet pressing needs for student learning.

In her Huffington Post article announcing the initiative, Darling-Hammond pledges to prioritize whatever works best for students over any partisan agenda. “We will follow the evidence wherever it leads, and will work with those of any political affiliation or point of view who share that commitment,” she writes.

Key State Policy Makers Complete Hunt-Kean Fellowship

Fifteen high-level state policy makers recently completed the inaugural class of the Hunt-Kean Leadership Fellows program, a 9-month training for state policy makers on education policy issues. The Hunt Institute, a center based at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, created the Hunt-Kean Leadership Fellows program in 2014 and named it in honor of former governors Jim Hunt (D-NC) and Tom Kean (R-NJ).

In their program, the fellows discuss and develop political and policy strategies around state education topics including teachers, school leaders, data systems, and higher education. The fellows are influential state leaders including governors, lieutenant governors, attorney generals, and state legislators considered to be some of the nation’s top “education catalysts of change.”

You Said Vegas, We Listened! BE THERE for AACTE 2016

Why hold the AACTE 68th Annual Meeting in Las Vegas? A recent AACTE member survey ranked Las Vegas as a top city to convene the nation’s largest conference for educator preparation. So by popular demand, we’re heading to Nevada in February 2016!

BE THERE to connect with your peers from across the country and get solutions for your toughest challenges as we discuss “Meeting the Demands of Professional Practice.” You’ll delve into best practices in educator preparation research, policy, and programs with leaders in the field. From the major forums and concurrent sessions to the Speaker Spotlight Session and the Job and Information Fair, you’ll become empowered to build a stronger teaching workforce, institution, and community.

Community Opportunities: USED Bus Tour Coming Sept. 14-18

Get ready to connect with your communities this month around the U.S. Department of Education’s 2015 “Ready for Success” bus tour, making stops in 10 cities September 14-18.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan and other senior officials will hold events in schools, universities, and other education settings to celebrate efforts to improve educational access and opportunity. Each “bus stop” will spotlight a different topic, ranging from college access and affordability to teacher leadership, disability resources, and technology.

Demystifying Clinical Practice in Teacher Preparation

This post also appears on the Public School Insights blog of the Learning First Alliance.

Educators from PK-12 schools and higher education share the goal of preparing preservice teachers in a way that develops candidates’ skills, contributes positively to student growth, and stimulates mutual renewal of schools and collegiate preparation programs. The conception of clinical experience as a few weeks of student teaching not only is antiquated but runs counter to our professional commitment to quality. Instead, today’s preparation programs are nurturing complex clinical partnerships with yearlong residencies or internships that both produce beginning teachers who are practice-ready and support a process that strengthens the schools’ capacity to deliver high-quality education for their students.

NCTQ Solicits School Districts to Partner on Student Teaching Agreements

In its latest effort to debase educator preparation programs, the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) is reaching out to PK-12 school districts to develop an “Honors Student Teaching” program in partnership with NCTQ. The effort seeks to replace existing student teaching commitments the districts may have with their local institutions of higher education (IHEs) over the course of 2-3 years. See this document for the details of the proposal.

A recent NPR story quoted NCTQ President Kate Walsh as saying, “It’s time for school districts to be much more insistent on what the qualifications are of teachers who enter and try to get a new job with them.” The new partnership proposal demonstrates that NCTQ intends to take charge of defining those qualifications. The proposal offers districts a set of complimentary services that include developing the knowledge and skills requirements for teacher candidate selection, as well as identifying local teacher preparation programs that would best meet the needs of the district—presumably using NCTQ’s Teacher Prep Review as a guide.

Research-to-Practice Spotlight: Partnering for Principal Preparation

A new video is now available in the Research-to-Practice Spotlight Series, part of AACTE’s Innovation Exchange. Kicking off a series focused on building partnerships for clinical preparation, this first video presents an interview with Jennifer Roth, who is both a doctoral candidate in principal leadership at Colorado State University and assistant principal at nearby Fort Collins High School. This blog highlights Roth’s experiences shared in the interview, which was conducted by AACTE with support from the Wallace Foundation.

Jennifer Roth’s principal leadership journey began more than a decade ago, when she was a teacher at Fort Collins High School and wanted to step up her work developing educator interns from Colorado State University (CSU). To do so, she completed a master’s degree for principal licensure at CSU, after which she became assistant principal at Fort Collins. This move allowed her to co-instruct CSU’s school-based course for interns, have a greater impact on future educators, and jump-start her own leadership trajectory.

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