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AACTE Statement on Florida Bill HB 7093

On behalf of the Board of Directors of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), President and CEO Lynn M. Gangone issued the following statement today responding to the passage of HB 7093 through the Florida legislature:

“While it is in the purview of states to determine paths forward on school safety that protect students and teachers, the passage of this particular bill in Florida is disconcerting at best.

In particular, after Parkland, Florida enacted a law that created an optional program to have armed ‘guardians’ on school campuses, but explicitly prohibited teachers engaged in classroom instruction from being a guardian, with limited, focused exceptions. HB 7093 eliminates this prohibition, opening the door for classroom teachers to be armed. Expanding what was already a controversial policy is the wrong path toward ensuring the safety of all students and staff on school campuses.

AACTE Commends Increase of Teacher Quality Partnership Grant Funds in Draft Funding Bill

The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) is pleased by the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies’ (Labor-H Subcommittee) draft bill released for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) yesterday. Among the programs seeing an increase in funding is the Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) grant program, the only federal initiative dedicated to strengthening and transforming educator preparation at institutions of higher education.

AACTE members have worked tirelessly to inform Congress about the effectiveness of this program, and the result is now tangible. The AACTE community can take heart, as their voices have clearly been heard on Capitol Hill. The bill in its current form increases TQP by $10 million for a total of $53 million; TQP has been flat-funded at $43.1 million since FY15. 

Report Identifies Student Diversity in U.S. Colleges of Education by Race and Ethnicity

(February 26, 2019, Washington, D.C.)Education Students and Diversity: A Review of New Evidence, an issue brief released today by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), provides new information on student diversity in U.S. colleges of education. As a supplement to AACTE’s signature report, Colleges of Education: A National Portrait, the new issue brief draws from a recently released U.S. Department of Education survey—The National Postsecondary Student Aid Study. It examines the characteristics of students working toward bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education, compares these students to the general student population, and identifies key differences by race/ethnicity.

The issue brief presents newly available data on the following topics for education students in bachelor’s and master’s degree programs:

  • Personal characteristics
  • Family circumstances
  • Parental education
  • Financial status
  • Employment
  • Attendance patterns

Kim Metcalf of UNLV Begins Term as New AACTE Board Chair

(Feb. 25, 2019, Washington, D.C.) – The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) welcomes the new chair of its Board of Directors: Kim Metcalf, Ph.D., dean of the College of Education at the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV). During his one-year term, Metcalf will lead the Board through strategic planning in partnership with AACTE President and CEO Lynn M. Gangone.

“I believe colleges of education are at a turning point,” said Metcalf. “As an association, we can continue to sustain the status quo, with an emphasis on ‘best practices’ based on ideas or outcomes that are nearly 40 years old, or we can focus our efforts on research and innovation that provide our member institutions and our professional colleagues with the tools they need to address the challenges of tomorrow.” 

Metcalf has served in his current role at UNLV since 2013, where he has focused on leveraging the unique context of Southern Nevada and the Clark County School District to encourage development of “next generation” approaches to education, educator preparation, and education policy. His research in teacher education and in education policy—particularly his research on school choice—is nationally recognized by the Association of Teacher Educators, the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, and the American Evaluation Association, among others. His publications include the coauthored textbook, The Act of Teaching, now in its sixth edition.

AACTE Response to the Federal School Safety Commission Report

AACTE President/CEO Lynn M. Gangone issued the following statement on December 20, 2018 regarding the latest Federal School Safety Commission report:

On December 18, 2018, the Federal School Safety Commission released its final report, outlining the background of its work and providing recommendations for action across three broad areas: 1) prevent, 2) protect and mitigate, and 3) respond and recover. While AACTE appreciates the effort of the current Administration to explore the critical issue of school safety, the report raises significant concerns and poses further questions.

The Commission’s report talks about the social-emotional and mental health needs of our K-12 students; however, it does not address capacity building for schools to have the tools to reach more students. The recommendation to rescind the current guidance on school discipline, created to combat the disproportionate suspension and expulsion of students of color, students with disabilities, and LGBTQ youth, is also highly problematic and contrary to our Association’s values of equity and inclusion. AACTE President and CEO Lynn M. Gangone testified before the Commission and joined others in strongly discouraging the use of federal funds to arm teachers as a solution to ensure school safety, yet the report does not eliminate the option of training and arming school personnel with firearms.

AACTE Statement on DeVos’s Proposal to Arm Teachers

AACTE President/CEO Lynn M. Gangone and the AACTE Board of Directors issued the following statement today regarding the Trump administration’s proposal to use federal funds for placing guns in schools:

“AACTE strongly opposes U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’s consideration to arm teachers in the classroom as this will endanger the safety of both students and educators. Teacher preparation programs across the nation ensure profession-ready educators are prepared to create safe learning communities where children can learn without fear.

Report Identifies Key Challenges, Characteristics of U.S. Colleges of Education

(August 9, 2018, Washington, D.C.)Colleges of Education: A National Portrait, a report released today by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), provides a comprehensive picture of the nation’s schools, colleges and departments of education: the work that they do, the people who do that work and the students they serve.

Because teacher preparation is so important to society and central to the work of most colleges of education, the report describes in detail the key trends and challenges in meeting the nation’s need for profession-ready teachers. It also portrays the full spectrum of undergraduate and graduate programs, research and service that are in the broader portfolio of colleges of education.

AACTE Statement on Child Separation Policy

On June 22, AACTE President/CEO Lynn M. Gangone and the AACTE Board of Directors issued the following statement regarding President Trump’s executive order ending the immigration policy of separating children from families:

“Detaining children without their parents in prison-like environments is harmful to their mental, emotional, and physical health and well-being, and will be a detriment to their ability to thrive and perform at high levels in the classroom. While we understand that immigration policy is complex and often fraught with challenges, it is our duty to care for and protect children, regardless of their national origin. The executive order issued is prospective and accordingly does nothing to reunite already-separated children with their parents; it is only a temporary fix for a flawed policy.

AACTE Convenes 2018 Washington Week, June 3-6

(June 4, 2018, Washington, D.C.) – Teacher educators and other members from colleges and schools of education across the nation are convening June 3-6 for the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) 2018 Washington Week. This national advocacy event for educator preparation, themed “Your Voice Matters,” is taking place at the Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel in Arlington, Virginia, and on Capitol Hill.

“Washington Week is one of our premier programs, and AACTE is very proud to gather our colleagues and students from throughout the states to focus on policy and advocacy. I strongly encourage all of our members–administrators, faculty and staff—to attend and to make their voices heard,” said Dr. Lynn M. Gangone, president and CEO of AACTE. “Washington Week also showcases many of AACTE’s partnerships and highlights the importance of coalition and collaboration, particularly among education organizations here in Washington, to advocate for educator preparation at the federal and state levels.”

AACTE Statement on School Safety

On behalf of members and the AACTE Board of Directors, President and CEO Lynn M. Gangone issued the following statement March 8 regarding the Association’s position on school safety:

“It is imperative to protect the safety of teachers and students in the classroom, as it is a fundamental right for children to go to school and learn and for teachers to teach without fear; the sanctity of the classroom must be preserved. Since Sandy Hook in 2012, there have been 239 school shootings; 438 people have been shot and 138 killed. The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida, and its students’ advocacy have reinvigorated an urgency in the national discourse to ensure safe learning environments across America.

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