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UVI Launches Inclusive Childcare Laboratory & Diagnostic Center

This article and photo originally appeared in The Virgin Islands Consortium and is reprinted with permission.

The University of the Virgin Islands on Monday launched an Inclusive Childcare Laboratory and Diagnostic Center on the St. Thomas Campus. According a release the institution of higher learning issued, the new facility is intended to enhance the educational experience of preservice teachers who will be supervised by professors as part of their studies—while supporting the university’s students and employees to better manage the challenges of balancing parenthood and college life. UVI will be among the first Historically Black Colleges and Universities to provide this service.

The establishment of a research-based childcare program linked to early childhood and the School of Education has been a goal of UVI President David Hall’s since 2014. “This idea has evolved over the years and it’s no longer just a place to care for our students’ children, but an opportunity to create a model early education center that can help enhance the quality of early childhood education throughout the Virgin Islands,” Mr. Hall said. “The significance of this project is now more transformative than our students imagined.”

As many as 30 children can be admitted at the center at a time. The center is open for children between ages two to eleven. Initially, the center will be operational from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. However, it is expected to evolve from an after school to full-day childcare center, according to the university.  

The idea for the childcare center arose from a survey of UVI students, staff and faculty who emphasized the need for such a facility on campus. “The University’s ability to address this critical need indicates that we listen to our students and we strive to address their needs,” Mr. Hall said.

HACU proposes PK-12 and Higher Ed Collaboration Initiative for Federal Grant Funding

Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) across the country have just concluded another successful observance of National HSIs Week, celebrated this year from September 17-23. The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) joined the celebration by releasing a Resource Page dedicated to its new legislative initiative, the PK-12 and Higher Ed Collaboration. This initiative would create a new Part C under Title V of the Higher Education Act for a grant program to support partnerships and collaboration between HSIs and Hispanic-Serving School Districts (HSSDs) that educate the majority of Hispanic students.

On the Resource Page, you will also find a recently launched interactive map that shows the geographic relationship between HSIs, HSSDs, Emerging Hispanic-Serving Institutions, and Emerging Hispanic-Serving School Districts. Click on this link for details on our PK-12 and Higher Education Collaboration initiative and to view our interactive maps.

SHEEO Initiative Focuses on Practice at HBCUs to Increase Teacher Diversity

image of teacher in a school hallway

As the nation’s classrooms become more diverse, research has demonstrated that developing a more diverse teaching workforce is imperative to meeting the needs of all students. Efforts are under way across the nation to identify successful strategies for increasing the recruitment and retention of teachers of color, especially men of color, into the education workforce. Organizations including AACTE and the State Higher Education Executive Officers (SHEEO) are among those leading such efforts.

At AACTE, this work includes the Black, Hispanic, and Latino Male Teacher Initiative Networked Improvement Community (NIC), the AACTE Holmes Program, and the Diversified Teaching Workforce: Recruitment and Retention Topical Action Group. Each of these initiatives is focused on increasing educator diversity by identifying and implementing practice that supports degree attainment and teacher certification. The NIC is currently developing a conceptual framework paper to highlight some of these strategies and plans to release the paper at the 2018 AACTE Annual Meeting.

Penn Center for MSIs Convening Highlights New Report

On October 28-30, we had the privilege of taking part in the National Convening on Success in Teacher Education at Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs), held at the University of Pennsylvania. Hosted by the Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions, the convening was focused around the release of the Center’s new report, A Rich Source for Teachers of Color and Learning: Minority Serving Institutions.

MSIs, which include Hispanic-serving institutions, tribal colleges and universities, historically Black colleges and universities, and Asian American and Native American/Pacific Islander-serving institutions, educate 20% of college and university students, many of whom are low-income and first-generation college students as well as students of color. Because of their focus and scope, MSIs play a key role in teacher preparation and efforts to diversify the nation’s teaching workforce.

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