PDS Director Reflects on Partnership Themes

AACTE’s Research-to-Practice Spotlight Series on the Patton College of Education at Ohio University is coming to a close. We’ve enjoyed sharing the successful partnership work of the college and its network of professional development schools (PDSs) in a series of videos and blogs over the past 2 months, and now we’ve posted one final video – a longer clip with some great insights from the college’s leaders about their clinical practice model.

I invited Marcy Keifer Kennedy, who directs the college’s Center for PDS Partnerships, to reflect on this series. Here is her response:

As director of the Center for Professional Development School Partnerships in the Patton College of Education, I often tell people that I have the best job in the world. I have a job that allows me to be an active participant not only in the important work of teacher preparation but also in P-12 education. In my position, I serve as a bridge between the university and schools with the central mission of helping to facilitate programming that positively impacts both P-12 student learning and the development of new teachers in the field.

When I first learned about AACTE’s Research-to-Practice Spotlight Series, I was excited for the opportunity to showcase our school partners and faculty in southeastern Ohio who are committed to the clinical model of teacher preparation and to working together to develop programming that has the strongest impact on P-12 students. Under the support and leadership of Dean Renée Middleton, we have had the opportunity to do some exciting work of which we are very proud.

As I watched the filming of the video series, I was struck by recurring themes expressed by school-based and university-based partners alike, which included the importance of mutual respect and open communication in collegial collaboration. The PDS partnerships are one way that the Patton College is committed to the clinical model of teacher preparation. With an emphasis on P-12 student learning as a priority, strategies such as coteaching to improve student learning, sustained clinical experiences for teacher candidates and professional interns, and a focus on deriving theory from practice, we strive to continue developing and implementing programming that is mutually beneficial to all.

At Ohio University, we believe that we are “called to lead.” We prepare candidates who are change agents, committed to lifelong learning. As such, we continue to reimagine the clinical model of teacher preparation, recognizing the importance of collaborative programming being teacher and educator led. With significant attention to the importance of school performance-based outcomes, advocacy, and social justice, we continually reflect on current practice to ensure the development of new and innovative programming that best serves the needs of P-12 learners in the ever-changing school environments.

Learn more about the Patton College’s PDS partnerships in the Research-to-Practice Spotlight Series and these summary blogs:

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Rodrick Lucero

Vice President for Member Engagement and Support