I am pleased to announce that today marks the official launch of the redesigned AACTE.org.
In service to our members and the broader educator preparation community, AACTE undertook a major overhaul of its web site over the past year. Last August, many of you responded to our request for feedback on our web site. Based on your thoughtful input, we have transformed our information-sharing platform to be a more useful, supportive asset for our ongoing collaborative work.
In a time when information is almost exclusively created, shared, and accessed electronically, it is important that our electronic information-sharing tools be technologically current, well-designed, and user friendly. This redesign of AACTE.org serves as a smart, relevant electronic business card among power players in the greater education community—and more important, as a go-to resource for members like you.
The Innovations Inventory of AACTE’s Innovation Exchange is an online database highlighting members’ pioneering practices in educator preparation that have shown a positive impact on issues of student learning, preparation program advancement, or educator workforce needs. This blog post is one in a series highlighting entries from the inventory. To request inclusion of your institution’s innovations, contact Jessica Milton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Beginning in 2009, California State University (CSU) Fullerton has enjoyed a partnership with neighboring Placentia Yorba Linda Unified School District to support science instruction in the classroom. The partnership has served not only to improve the practice of teacher candidates in science instruction, but also to improve K-5 student achievement in science and content literacy. Throughout their time in the classroom, candidates jointly plan, teach, and reflect on their lessons.
Since the partnership began, student achievement scores have experienced double-digit gains, and teacher candidates report greater confidence in their science pedagogy. Proficiency levels in one school increased from 25% to 44% in just 1 year of partnership work. Candidates’ confidence to engage students in science increased from 77.5% to 97.5%, and the percentage reporting confidence in their content knowledge in science increased from 57.5% to 90.0%.
Thanks to heavy involvement by the Oklahoma Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (OACTE), Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin recently signed HB 2885 into law, restoring the state’s teacher induction program.
The Oklahoma Teacher Induction Program (OTIP), which had been suspended since 2010, provides professional support, mentorship, and coaching for beginning teachers. Under the new law, school districts can voluntarily offer the induction program during the 2014-15 academic year; it becomes mandatory in the 2015-16 academic year. Furthermore, the bill permits teacher mentors to support more than one beginning teacher, and it establishes a paid teacher internship program at teacher preparation institutions.
In the next few days, Chief Representatives at 400 randomly selected AACTE member institutions will receive an invitation from the Association to complete a survey on data use in their teacher preparation programs.
As readers of this blog know, teacher preparation institutions are under increasing pressure to provide data on the effectiveness of their programs and to use these data to make decisions about ongoing program improvement. However, a growing body of research shows that using data to make decisions about policy and practice involves much more than collecting, aggregating, and analyzing information. In order to understand what it takes to go from collecting to effectively using data, AACTE and the University of Washington have been collaborating over the last 2 years on a Spencer Foundation-sponsored project focused on describing how teacher education programs are learning to use new sources of outcome data for the purposes of program improvement.
Updated to reflect new application deadline.
Applications are now available for a new slate of Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) grants, the federal government’s only investment in reforming teacher preparation in institutions of higher education. Interested applicants will have to act quickly, though—the deadline for letters of intent is June 27, and full applications are due July 15.
Last week, in the Federal Register, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced the availability of approximately $35 million in new awards for fiscal year 2014 under the TQP grant program.